Superbowl 51 was last night, in case you happen to live on Mars.

Or under a rock.  Or something like that.

I’m a sports fan, even though I tend to like some sports more than others.  Pro football, outside the post season, is one of my likes.  I’m not much on the playoffs or the Superbowl per se, since most of the finales tend to be super lopsided and pretty boring in the end.

I was alone at home yesterday, the other half taking advantage of a sparsely populated golf course on a beautiful Phoenix day; our previous conversation about the game last week consisted of him saying that Atlanta would likely kick the Pats a**, and me saying, no, statistically not going to happen.

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I had the game on with the sound muted, and just happened to look up at 14-0, Atlanta, and about the time it got to 21-0, Atlanta, I had to plug my laptop in so I went down the hall to the office.  Said other half showed up at Superbowl halftime,  proceeded to comment on how he said ATL would kick the Pats a**, and I told him not to count the Pats out yet, since there was a LOT of game left to play.   I admit, I didn’t really think they had much of a chance, but I am one to stick by my predictions, even when the rats are jumping off the sinking ship, and I had also posted on my FB that taking the Pats at -3.5 was the bet…

The big winners never quit playing, even when they’re down.

If you know much about me, I spent a few years running around the globe, racing sailboats in hyper-competitive regattas.  We won some, we lost some (I don’t sail alone, the crew ranges from 2-10 people), and in one particular regatta we kicked the daylights out of our competition.  We didn’t even need to race the last time (we did, and we won that one too) because we could not lose overall.

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One thing I learned from that regatta was that big winners never stop grinding it down, not until the very end.  We were in last place early in many of the races (there were 7 of them) in that regatta.  I don’t recall being in first before the end in more than two races, we spent a lot of time in last place early in many races.

Look at how many records were set in the comeback.

That is some seriously crazy stuff.  At least 15 new records, including most wins by a coach and a quarterback.  Pittsburgh still has most wins by a team, and that’s likely to stand for awhile yet, since Brady isn’t getting any younger and neither he nor Belichek can go on forever (unlike Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones, lol); bodies just aren’t designed for it.  Teams play so many more games in a season now than they did when the Steelers were racking up the wins, and that takes it toll on all the bodies, no matter their age.

One big play that stood out for me – Julian Edelman catching what looked to be an uncatchable pass – you know the one that bobbled off the defenders arm when Edelman couldn’t get a good hand on it initially.  His wherewithal to keep his fingers up and the ball from hitting the ground was nothing less than a beautiful example of how ingrained the right thing to do in a business situation can become.  That’s not really a play you can practice, eh?

I’m sure the Pats offensive line heard a few choice words from Brady and Belichek, heck I’ve never seen Brady get smacked around that much in a single game, much less a single drive.  That kid from ATL that took him down 3 times deserves to be in the record books.

At the end of the day, I don’t think the Pats won the Superbowl because Atlanta choked, quite so much as they won because they just kept grinding it down.

It’s much harder to stay in front than it is to get out in front.