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No more scowling Bill Belichick, angry as always under his hoodie. No more sly smiles and phony platitudes from Tom Brady. No talk about Spygate; no worries about deflated footballs. And no more speculation about just what New England owner Robert Kraft might be up to. For the first time in four years, the Patriots will be sitting at home when the NFL championship is decided.
And, really, on the th anniversary of the NFL, that should be reason enough to celebrate. They are already excited at sports books around the country, where hundreds of millions of dollars will exchange hands Super Bowl Sunday. They should be excited at Fox network headquarters, too, for a Super Bowl matchup that is really Super this year.
Pick a winner if you can. But sports fans across America — with the exception of a little slice of the Northeast — are already winners before the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers even arrive in Miami. Like all dynasties, though, this one appears ready to be shut down.
Even at the age of 42 he still may have another Super Bowl in that magical right arm. Enough of Brady taking an ever-changing cast to the game, only to have to find a way to win it himself. Enough of Belichick dismissively answering even the most basic questions like he was being asked to give away his first-born. They did cheat, of course, which taints this dynasty unlike any other. Spygate itself might have sunk any other team, but the Patriots just brushed it off and kept winning games. And win they did, on the biggest stages and in the biggest moments.
They gave us arguably the greatest comeback in a Super Bowl against the Falcons, rallying from a point deficit midway through the third quarter in to win in overtime. Greatness, indeed.
But greatness not celebrated much outside of New England. Patriots fatigue was evident at Nevada sports books, too.
Expect the TV s to break the million mark again. And a new sports betting record is pretty much a given, both in Nevada and the 13 other states that now allow legal sports betting. Hopefully the Chiefs and 49ers will deliver. Brady and the Patriots usually did, even while they took some of the fun out of the game.
Tim Dahlberg is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at tdahlberg ap. Column: Finally, the Super Bowl might be fun again. The Titans defeated the Patriots Margaret Bowles via AP. Connect with the definitive source for global and local news.
The Associated Press. All rights reserved.Snapchat bree olson october 23 2016
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