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The AFC Champion New England Patriots and NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks will face off against one another this coming Sunday for the right to call themselves the champions of Super Bowl XLIX. A staunch Seahawks defense led by Richard Sherman and Cam Chancellor will attempt to put the brakes on the Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady.
The Odds: The New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks in this year’s Super Bowl is listed as a pickem.
For all the talk about the Patriots dynasty it is worth nothing their last Super Bowl win came in 2004. Brady will set a record with his sixth Super Bowl start but the biggest question is whether or not he leaves with his fourth ring.
Seattle Seahawks' Russell Wilson celebrates after overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan. Seattle Seahawks' Chris Matthews (13) and DeShawn Shead celebrate after overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan.
Seattle Seahawks' Ricardo Lockette celebrates after during overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan.
Seattle Seahawks fans celebrate after overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan. Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll talks with Fox Sports announcer Terry Bradshaw after an NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan.
Seattle Seahawks' Russell Wilson reacts after overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan. Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen celebrates after an NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan.
Seattle Seahawks' Jermaine Kearse catches the game winning touchdown pass against Green Bay Packers' Tramon Williams during overtime of the NFL football NFC Championship game, Sunday, Jan.
Seattle Seahawks' Marshawn Lynch catches a pass during the second half of the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan.
Buy Windows 10 * Cortana * Edge Browser * Getting Started with Windows 10 * How Many Versions of Windows 10? The president honored the team that vanquished the Seattle Seahawks in a dramatic come-from-behind victory on Feb. FOXBOROUGH, Mass.— The Super Bowl champion New England Patriots were feted at the White House Thursday.
The New England Patriots' Lombardi trophies are displayed outside the White House on Thursday in this photo posted by the Patriots on Twitter.
Members of the New England Patriots relax at the White House before the reception with President Obama. Patriots special teams star Matthew Slater said earlier this week that the entire team was excited about the opportunity to meet the president and planned to enjoy it.
Some players were already putting the championship in the past, however, as off-season workouts began this week with an eye on next season. The visit continued the tradition of the president honoring sports teams for giving back to their communities.
Here at MaineToday Media we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. The New England Patriots were gradually starting to become a franchise with expectations in the latter part of the 1970s.
Thus, while they were a far cry from a dynasty, they had played consistently well enough to merit excitement at the start of each season. The Pats had talent, starting with left tackle John Hannah, a 1st-team All-Pro and in the conversation as the greatest offensive lineman of all time. Defensively, there werena€™t any Pro Bowlers in 1981, but inside linebacker Steve Nelson had achieved that designation previously and the corners were very talented, with Raymond Clayborn and Mike Haynes both having lockdown ability.
In spite of all this, the Patriots were mediocre on offense (15th in the NFL in points scored) and subpar on defense (22nd in points allowed). New England opened the season at home with the Baltimore Colts and in spite of playing a bad team, the Pats allowed 249 yards on the ground and dropped a 29-28 decision.
Grogan threw three interceptions at Philly and had been relieved by Matt Cavanaugh, the quarterback of Pitta€™s 1976 national championship team, but mostly unaccomplished in the NFL. The Pittsburgh Steelers were falling into mediocrity, two years removed from the last Super Bowl title of the Steel Curtain era, but they jumped out to a 14-zip lead on New England. New Englanda€™s season had already slipped awaya€”no team had ever made the playoffs after an 0-4 start and that streak would hold until the San Diego Chargers pulled it off in 1992.

The rush defense was no better, but this time the Patriots answered with a potent ground game of their own, as Collins led an attack that piled up 240 yards. New England traveled to old Shea Stadium to face the New York Jets, who were trying to recover from a slow start themselves, having begun the year 1-3-1. The Johnson-to-Morgan passing combination worked to create another touchdown pass the next week at home against the Houston Oilers. The calendar went to December and though New England was a miserable 2-11, there was still a chance to play spoiler, with a road game in Miami and home date with Buffalo. The 1981 season was misery for New England, with the bookend losses to Baltimorea€”a much more horrific team, who set defensive records for incompetencea€”being the lowlight point. In fairness to New England, Sims was a consensus #1 choice, and they arena€™t the only team who would have made the mistake. There are no comments for this article at this moent, but you can be first one to leave a comment. It may not display this or other websites correctly.You should upgrade or use an alternative browser.
If you have a mobile device or use your computer most of the time, here are some cool wallpapers. While the Patriots have dealt with allegations of using under inflated balls in the AFC Championship game, the Seahawks are still riding high on the momentum of a stunning come from behind win against the Green Bay Packers to earn a trip to this years Super Bowl as they attempt to repeat as champions. Thata€™s what makes the complete collapse of the 1981 New England Patriots even more disheartening. They had balance at the skill positons, with fullback Sam Cunningham and a good rookie in Tony Collins in the backfield. But even those disappointing ranks should have at least given the team a respectable record. The next game was in Philadelphia, where the Eagles were coming off a Super Bowl appearance and would get off to a 6-0 start in 1981. Cavanaugh got the call for a Monday Night home date with the Dallas Cowboys and threw four interceptions of his own. The Patriots still trailed 21-7 when Cavanaugh rallied the offense to tie the game, forcing overtime on a 12-yard touchdown pass to Morgan.
Another running back, Andy Johnson, got in the act with the passing game, finding Morgan for a touchdown on a halfback pass.
More important, Collins outrushed the great Houston back Earl Campbell and the Pats won going away, 38-10. When New England gave up a punt return for a touchdown, the Patriots ended up on the wrong side of a 24-22 final. But the inability to run the ball caught up with the Pats in the fourth quarter and the Raiders won 27-17. Grogan got the game off to a strong start, hitting Morgan on a 76-yard touchdown pass and the Patriots led 17-6 against a team that would ultimately win the AFC East and get the 2-seed in the playoffs.
Another AFC East rival squarely in the mix of the playoff race was the Buffalo Bills, the defending divisional champs who would be a wild-card this year. They were tied 14-14 with the Dolphins, but the typically poor rush defense again caught up with the Pats in the fourth quarter of a 24-14 loss. Instead, the 1981 New England Patriots mastered the art of losing close games and the losses just piled up, all the way to the number one pick in the ensuing springa€™s NFL draft. Facing a 1st-team All-NFL running back in Tony Dorsett, ita€™s no surprise that the defense continued to get muscled up front, again allowing over 200 yards in a 35-21 loss. The following week in Washington, they were in position to get some momentum, when they jumped out to an early lead against a lowly Redskins team. Just as the Jets game gave an opponent new life, this one did the same for the Redskinsa€”they stormed on to finish 8-8 after losing the first five and one year later won the Super Bowl. But Grogan also threw four interceptions, the rush defense again allowed 200-plus yards and the game went to overtime tied 27-27.
New England was competitive on the road, with the improbable Andy Johnson-to-Stanley Morgan passing combo producing its third touchdown of the year on a 56-yard play. Their problems came early against Buffalo, giving up a couple early touchdowns in a 19-10 defeat. New England drafted defensive tackle Kenneth Sims out of Texas, who proved to be a monumental bust.
But given how disappointing the 1981 season was in Foxboro regardless, the draft legacy was just one more dose of salt in the wound.

Even the three years where they missed the playoffs (1977, 1979, 1980) were marked by winning seasons. Steve Grogan was at quarterback, and while he was mistake-prone, he also had a demonstrated capacity to be prolific. These two division rivals, within a half-game of each other coming in, would go in opposite direction. Allen, of course, would be a Super Bowl MVP by 1983, a league MVP by 1985 and make the Hall of Fame. Plagued by turnovers and outplayed much of the day, the Seahawks staged a stunning rally built on resilience. Russell Wilson, who struggled until the final minutes, hit Jermaine Kearse for a 35-yard touchdown 3:19 into the extra period to win it. The Seahawks became the first defending champion to make the Super Bowl in 10 years, and will play the winner of the AFC title game between Indianapolis and New England. Wilson finally put a drive together with passes to Doug Baldwin and Marshawn Lynch - initially ruled a touchdown but called back because he stepped out of bounds.
The onside kick went high to Packers tight end Brandon Bostick, but he couldn't gather it, and Seattle's Chris Matthews recovered at the 50. The crowd, quiet since Seattle fell behind 16-0, came alive, and Lynch sped and powered his way to a 24-yard TD run. On the 2-point conversion, Wilson - about to be sacked - threw a desperate pass hauled in by Luke Willson to make it 22-19 with 1:25 remaining. Aaron Rodgers, limping on an injured calf, calmly led the Packers (13-5) downfield to set up Mason Crosby's fifth field goal, a 48-yarder with 14 seconds to go to force overtime. Then Wilson and Kearse struck, with Kearse - the target on all four of Wilson's interceptions - beating Tramon Williams on the winning pass. Kearse has also caught the winning score in last year's conference title win over San Francisco. Wilson ran through cameramen to jump on Kearse's back, and defensive end Michael Bennett borrowed a bicycle from a police officer and rode around the edge of the field saluting the "12s." Until the final minutes, there seemed to be no doubt the Packers were headed to the big game Feb. Despite All-Pro Rodgers' injury, Green Bay and its overlooked defense was carrying the day. We can't blame anybody but ourselves." Special teams trickery lifted the Seahawks back into the game after falling behind 16-0. Their first touchdown came on a fake field goal when holder Jon Ryan threw 19 yards to tackle eligible Garry Gilliam in the third quarter. Lynch rushed for 157 yards on 25 carries and was the one consistent offensive force Seattle had. And after the Packers tied it, Seattle wouldn't be denied in overtime, winning the coin toss and going 87 yards in six plays.
Somehow, somehow we pulled it out." The matchup of Green Bay's top-ranked scoring offense against the league's stingiest defense instead was being controlled by the Packers' ability to stop - and turn over - the Seahawks. Rookie safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix had two interceptions and Green Bay sacked Wilson five times. The center of conversation after last January's NFC championship win against the 49ers, he quietly left the field with his arm still pinned to his body, an NFC championship towel hanging off his right arm. But the Pack was right back in scoring position moments later when Clinton-Dix grabbed a tipped pass and returned it 26 yards to the Seattle 4.
Fullback John Kuhn, another All-Pro, had his TD dive reversed by a replay review and Seattle held.
Randall Cobb caught an 18-yard TD pass on the final play of the opening quarter to make it 13-0; Green Bay outgained Seattle 137-3 in the period. Wilson was picked off three times, had a QB rating of 0.00, and Seattle was fortunate it didn't trail by more.
Even after the fake field goal TD made it 16-7, the Seahawks didn't seem likely to pull off the comeback. Yet they did, becoming the first team since New England a decade ago to return to the Super Bowl.

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