Super Bowl LIII: A Game of Contrasts and Throwbacks
The 53rd Super Bowl is fast approaching. The game promises an exciting conclusion to the NFL season. Super Bowl LIII will feature the venerable New England Patriots facing the newly-relocated Los Angeles Rams. The two teams have much in common – with performance topping the list. It’s the contrasts that make this Super Bowl different from others in recent history.
Veteran versus rising star
The LA Ram’s Jared Goff does not take the record for youngest starting quarterback in a Super Bowl at 24. However, Tom Brady easily takes the oldest spot at 41 – a difference of 17 years. The contrast in ages is, by far, the largest in a Super Bowl. The previous record was set in 2016 when Peyton Manning competed against Cam Newton in Super Bowl 50.
NFL’s newest stadium
Opened on August 2017, the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta is the newest in the league. At a year and a half in age, it will keep that title until 2020. Las Vegas and Los Angeles both complete their new stadiums that year.
A return to form for Los Angeles
This won’t be the first Super Bowl appearance for the Los Angeles Rams. Although they lost, they made it to the Super Bowl in 1979 against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Yet, this is the first Super Bowl for the Rams since they returned to LA and their third Super Bowl total.
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The Patriots continue to break their own records. Super Bowl LIII marks Tom Brady and Bill Belichick’s 9th Super Bowl, and the 10th for the Patriots as a franchise. All three are records for the league.
Anticipating high scores
The Super Bowl is a traditionally high scoring game. In the past ten years, the average total points sit at 45. This year’s line-up could shatter that score, due to both the Rams’ and the Patriots’ strong offense, suggesting that we may see a race for points.
Old school uniforms
In another nod to age and history, the Los Angeles Rams will be wearing a set of throwback jerseys. The retro blue and yellow uniforms are a stark contrast to their prior blue-and-whites. The blue and yellow style is a fan-favorite.
Almost a rematch
This will be the second time that the New England Patriots compete against the Rams in the Super Bowl. The St. Louis Ram’s previous attempt came in 2002 during Super Bowl XXXVI. 2019 grants them a rematch against not only the Patriots – but Tom Brady and Bill Belichick as well. Time will tell if their return to Los Angeles will make a difference in performance.
The Rams and Atlanta
The previous Super Bowl between the Rams and the Patriots ended in a Patriots victory. But, in the last Rams appearance at an Atlanta-based Super Bowl, fortune favored St. Louis. Hosted at the now-defunct Georgia Dome, Super Bowl XXXIV featured the St. Louis Rams against the Tennessee Titans. The Rams won 23-16.
East Coast versus West Coast
The Los Angeles Rams vs. the New England Patriots is a coast-to-coast battle. The Patriots are the most geographically North-East team in the league. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Rams share the South-West location with the Chargers. This is the greatest possible geographic distance between teams. Unless Seattle goes against Jacksonville in the Super Bowl
A look at the averages
The New England Patriots are going into their 11th Super Bowl. Their average score over the previous nine games is just below 24 points. The Rams don’t provide quite so much data, with only two NFL championship games under their belt. The average of those two games is 20. Combined, these two scores are 44 – within one point of the average Super Bowl point total of 45.
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