The New England Patriots masterminded one of the greatest comebacks we have ever seen in football history over the weekend, coming back from 28-3 down to beat the Falcons in Super Bowl 51.
The Patriots started poorly but thanks to a series of adjustments from Bill Belichick and both Tom Brady and the defense deciding to actually step up their game and start playing, New England turned things around and came out on top in what will go down as the best Super Bowl ever.
So, how did the Patriots really do it? Well, we now may know, thanks to the Patriots gameplan apparently being left behind in the locker room at NRG Stadium after SB51. USA Today released images of the whiteboard.
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The Game Plan
There are various sections broken up on the whiteboard, with areas devoted to who is returning punts and kicks, what plays they are going to be running on first and second downs, as well as what plays will likely be called on third down in different areas of the field.
10 Step Plan
And we cannot ignore the 10-point list of "Musts" that have been written on the right-hand side of the board. Let's list them here:
1) Start fast and do your job well. (That did not happen at all!)
2) Stop The Run.
3) Get after #2 (Matt Ryan) > Attack The Spot
4) Eliminate #11 (Julio Jones) & No Big Plays
5) Win the Turnover Battle = Win Game
6) Tackling Is The Game
7) Situational Football
8) Play Smart & Aware
9) Most Physical Team!
10) It’s All About US!!!
And then there is in big letters at the bottom of the board "DEFENSE WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS!" Which makes it very interesting when you consider the fact that it was Tom Brady and James White who really instigated the comeback.
The defense did their part, however. They managed to shut down the Falcons running attack in the second half incredibly well and also followed order number three on the board by getting at Matt Ryan and bringing him down on multiple occasions, forcing a key fumble on one occasion.