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NFL News and Notes: February 5, 2019

Patriots Win Super Bowl LIII

In a matchup between two of the best offenses in the NFL this season, it was the defenses that controlled the game on Super Bowl Sunday. With the final score of 13-3, only a total of 6 points had been scored through the first three quarters. If it weren’t for a fourth-quarter touchdown and field goal by the Patriots, these teams might not have broken double-digits…combined. In fact, this was the lowest scoring Super Bowl of all time.

Still, in what seemed like a sleeper of a game, congratulations are in store for Tom Brady, Bill Belichick, and the New England Patriots. Winning their 6th title together, Brady and Belichick proved once again that the Patriots are hard to count out, no matter what the regular season looks like. At 11-5, many considered this one of the worst Patriots teams in years, but they still were able to take out the likes of the L.A. Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs, and LA Rams— three of the best teams in the NFL and three teams that had a lot more buzz throughout the season than the Patriots.

The Pats were also able to do it without their offense playing spectacularly. Tom Brady threw for just 262 yards with no touchdowns and one interception and running backs James White and Rex Burkhead were kept relatively in check. The only Patriots who had particularly good games on the offensive side were Sony Michel, Julian Edelman, and Rob Gronkowski. Sony Michel rushed 18 times for 94 yards and the lone touchdown in the game. Julian Edelman, the game’s MVP, had 10 catches for 141 yards and Gronkowski went for 87 yards on 6 catches.

On the Rams side, Goff looked fazed by the big lights. He threw for 229 yards while throwing one interception and being sacked 4 times. A couple of those sacks seemed much more on him than the offensive line. Still noticeably absent from the stat sheet was Todd Gurley. Arguably the best running back through most of the season, he only rushed 10 times for 35 yards. The only offensive player that had a good night was Brandin Cooks, who went for 120 yards on 8 catches.

Regardless, even though overnight ratings showed that not as many tuned in, and even though controversy surrounded this Super Bowl, most notably because of how the NFC and AFC championship games went down, the Patriots once again did their thing and showed why they have been the best team in the 21st century.

Flores Riding High Into New Coaching Job

No one in the NFL might be having a better week than Brian Flores. The former Patriots defensive wizard, who just held the high-flying LA Rams to just 3 points in the Super Bowl, finalized his deal to become the new Miami Dolphins head coach on Monday, according to Ian Rapoport. While Flores will have a lot of work to do with a suspect Miami Dolphins roster, he showed this year that he can do wonders on the defensive side, and now has a Super Bowl ring to show it.

Another Super Bowl Coach Moves Onto Next Gig

While Zac Taylor might not be riding as high as Brian Flores after losing in the Super Bowl, he is also moving onto his next team. Taylor was officially hired as the new head coach for the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday. Taylor, who served as the quarterbacks coach for the Rams, will take on a team that finished just 6-10 this year. Still, Cincinnati is hoping that he can bring an innovative approach to the offense, much like Taylor and head coach Sean McVay brought to the Rams.

Antonio Brown Still Looking To Get Out Of Pittsburgh

Even though some of the tensions between Antonio Brown and the Steelers have simmered down, it appears as if Brown is still sticking to his guns that he would like to be traded out of Pittsburgh. According to Jason La Canfora, Brown has reiterated his desire to be traded, and if they decide to do so, it would likely happen sooner than later. There are major economic reasons for the Steelers to make a decision before June 1st, but with the possibility of draft pieces coming back, it may happen much sooner than June. Only time will tell how this one unfolds, but it seems increasingly unlikely that Brown will be wearing the black and yellow next season.

Julius Peppers Retires

After 17 amazing seasons, one of the best defensive players in modern history is calling it a career. Julius Peppers has decided to officially retire from the NFL. He currently ranks 4th in all-time total sacks at 159.5. His best season from a sack perspective was in 2008 with the Carolina Panthers, when he had 14.5 sacks. He also amassed 11 interceptions and 4 touchdowns in his career. Starting in 2002, he played with the Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, and Green Bay Packers. Still, of his 17 seasons, 10 of them were with the Panthers. He is a sure bet Hall of Famer and one of the greatest to have ever played.

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