Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Quickie Sports Chowdah Update- The Butler Did It! Patriots Win 4th Super Bowl on Malcom Butler's Late Pick; Say Clay- Buchholz Hurls Gem in 2015 Season Opener

SUPER BOWL- I know I'm more than 2 months behind on this, but WOW.

All you need to know about Super Bowl XLIX took place in the second half. After the Patriots defense gave up an 11 yard TD pass from Russell Wilson to WR Chris Matthews in the closing seconds of the first half, Seattle and New England headed into the 3rd quarter tied at 14-14.

Glendale, AZ's University of Phoenix Stadium has been home to some cringe-worthy moment for Patriots fans in the past and in the 3rd quarter, it appeared to be happening again as the Seahawks took a 24-14 lead.

About 7 minutes into the 4th quarter, the Patriots cut Seattle's lead to 3 point thanks to a TD pass from Brady to Danny Amendola to make it 24-21. Just before the two minute warning, New England would take a 28-24 lead thanks to Brady connecting to Julian Edelman for a 4 yard TD pass.

However, Patriots fans had that sinking feeling when Seahawks QB Russel Wilson connecting with WR Jermaine Kearse for a 33 yard completion- it was bobbled and appeared to be incomplete as Kearse scooped it up, but a video review from the officials showed that the ball had never touched the ground, giving the Seahawks the ball on the Patriots 5 yard line with 1:06 to go in regulation. After a timeout, Wilson handed off the ball to RB Marshawn Lynch to put the ball on New England's 1-yard line and giving the Seahawks no fewer than three shots at the end zone as the clock ticked down.

For whatever reason, Pats head coach Bill Belichick declined to take a timeout as the clocked ticked down to less than 30 seconds. Instead of handing the ball off to Lynch, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll opted for a short pass with 20 seconds remaining in the game. It would not turn out well for Seattle.

Obscure and unheralded cornerback Malcom Butler singlehandedly sealed the win for New England thanks to his pick of Wilson's short pass attempt to give New England the ball back at a pivotal juncture in the game. The Patriots were flagged for excessive celebration and penalized half the distance to the end zone- basically putting the ball on the one foot line and giving the Seahawks a pretty good shot at a safety, but after a scrum between Bruce Irvin and Rob Gronkowski, the Seahawks were penalized fifteen yards, which gave New England some more wiggle room. After a kneeldown by Brady, the Patriots 28-24 win was official.

Tom Brady was named the Super Bowl MVP [the third time he garnered the award in the four Super Bowl titles New England has won in the Brady/Belicheck era- NANESB!]. After the game, Brady gifted Butler a brand new pickup truck from a Chevrolet dealership in Butler's Mississippi hometown.

Carroll- who was the Patriots head coach before his USC tenure- was questioned for his decision to go for a pass play after Marshawn Lynch had easily picked up four yards on the previous play. Some less-than-kind Patriots fans joked that at long last Carroll had followed through on winning a championship for New England some 15 years after he left.

While some sour grapes Seahawks fans wanted to use New England's championship to gripe about 'Deflategate', the Super Bowl XLIX shold be considered by many NFL fans to ba an 'instant classic'.

MLB OPENING DAY- The Red Sox got it done with the longball and a solid outing from Clay Buchholz in his first-ever opening day start as Boston opened up the 2015 MLB season on the road in Philadelphia.

The Red Sox got on the board early with a 362ft solo shot off the bat of Dustin Pedroia to give Boston a 1-0 lead. Outfielder Mookie Betts belted another solo homer to deep left field off of Phillies starter Cole Hammels in the top of the 3rd. Buchholz would go on to throw even complete shutout innings as the Red Sox added to their lead with solo homers from Pedroia and offseason acquisition Hanley Ramirez in the fifth inning.

Junichi Tazawa would come on and get all three of the Phillies batters he faced out in order in the 8th inning and Hanley Ramirez would belt a grand slam to give Boston an 8-0 lead and Tommy Layne closed things out in the bottom of the 9th.

Through his 7 innings of work, Buchholz allowed a total of three hits and struck out nine while walking one batter. Meanwhile, Hammels only lasted five innings, giving up four earned runs on five hits.

With Tuesday off, the Red Sox will put their undefeated record on the line against the Phillies on Wednesday. Offseason acquisition Rick Porcello will get the start for Boston against Philly's Aaron Harang. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 ET and the game will be televised on NESN and ESPN2.

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