It was on to overtime. Ironically, the Patriots’ final victory was precipitated by an error by Wes Welker, the former star Patriot receiver who now plays for the Broncos. As so often happens in sports, and particularly football, in an instant a simple mistake can turn into a monumental game changer. Welker, back to receive a Patriots’ punt, opted to let it bounce but failed to warn one of his fellow Broncos defenders of his intent. The ball struck the defender and so was up for grabs by either team. The Pats recovered and a game-winning field goal followed.
The game was big news across the nation, and is already being talked about as one of the greatest football games of the modern era. We lucky New Englanders have enjoyed more than our fair share of these kinds of games.
Sports Illustrated columnist Don Banks put it best. “We saw. And most of what we saw, we had never seen anything quite like it before. Even by Brady-Manning standards, it was a show that will be difficult to ever repeat, or top.”