Patriots upset the Rams 20-17

By Catherine Dilworth
February 7, 2002

AP photo

Super Bowl XXXVI proved to be a Super Bowl game where the actual game was better than the commercials. The New England Patriots had a revolutionary war and beat the St. Louise Rams in the last seconds of the battle.

Losing the Super Bowl is doubly tough when your team goes in as a 14-point favorite, rallies from a big deficit in the fourth quarter, and still loses. That’s what St. Louis found out Sunday as the New England Patriots’ Adam Vinatieri kicked a 48-yard field goal with no time remaining to beat the Rams 20-17 in the Super Bowl.

The loss spoiled what many fans figured would be a coronation. Few experts gave the Patriots much of a chance against St. Louis, who had the NFL’s best record (14-2) in the regular season.

The loss left St. Louis fans crying in their Budweiser; disappointed their team didn’t capture its second Super Bowl title in three years.

The Rams were down the whole game with the 3-point lead the Patriots had started off with in the first quarter. With each quarter the patriots stayed ahead but the gap slowly started to close. Rams tied the game with 1:30 to play. Cheers were had in hopes that the game would go into over time and a chance for the Rams could still be had. When the field goal sailed through, there was dead silence, by Rams fans anyway.

Adam Vinatieri, the kicker of the New England Patriots, brought them, or perhaps they brought him, so calmly to one of the most dramatic points in the history of American sport that the overwhelming favorites St Louis Rams must have known they were doomed. Vinatieri’s 48-yard kick sailed over the bar so majestically, for the stunning 20-17 victory.

The hero made it sound like a stroll in the neighborhood park rather than a pulsating Superdome. “I didn’t have too much time to think about the meaning of the kick,” Vinatieri said. ” I didn’t hear any noise of the crowd. I didn’t look around. I just kinda focused on what I had to do. Maybe I’ll wake up in a cold sweat but right now I just feel as though I’ve earned my money.”

Super Bowl XXXVI proved that there was lack of Ram. The Rams spent all season energized by the arm of league MVP Kurt Warner. But Warner’s two interceptions in Super Bowl XXXVI were costly, as they helped give the Patriots gain the Super Bowl victory.

Nonetheless, the Rams remain focused on returning to the Super Bowl in the near future. Even with the victory the Patriots had, it still did not build American confidence in the team. The football pole for 2003 has the Rams in better favor than the Patriots.

A funny coincidence that has happened ever since the Play Station Bowl, where two players are picked from each Super Bowl team to play a Super Bowl football video game, started is the turn out of the game. Every year the team that won the Play Station Bowl has won the Super Bowl and this year the Patriots took the Play Station victory as well.

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Catherine Dilworth

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