Jaron Nutter, Contributing Writer
Everything about the 2019 Super Bowl pointed to a shootout. Both the Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots boasted a top-five offense coming into the game and were fresh off thrilling overtime victories in their respective conference championships.
Instead, both teams combined for only 16 points. It was the worst Super Bowl ever.
The Rams averaged 32.9 points this season, second in the NFL. Quarterback Jared Goff threw 32 touchdowns and nearly 4,700 yards this season. Running back Todd Gurley finished with 21 rushing and receiving touchdowns combined. Wide receivers Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods garnered over 2,400 combined receiving yards.
The high-powered Rams offense even took part in the third-highest scoring game in NFL history this season, when they defeated the Kansas City Chiefs, 54-51. After that game, many speculated the NFL was moving toward an offensive-driven league. Rodger Sherman, writer for sports and pop culture site The Ringer, thought the Chiefs-Rams game would be the future of the NFL.
“Football is changing. Getting better, really,” Sherman said in a Ringer editorial. “The NFL has recently been accused of providing a lukewarm product with stagnating ratings. That’s not a problem anymore. Monday night will go down as the game that encapsulates these changes, the birth of a better football.”
However, these speculations were unfounded. The Rams’ consistent offensive machine fell flat on the NFL’s biggest stage.
Leading up to the Super Bowl, the Patriots did not fall short of offensive fireworks this season either. New England finished fifth in the league with 27.3 points and ended first in yards with 476.3. Quarterback Tom Brady was coming off another impressive year, finishing with 29 touchdowns and more than 4,300 passing yards. Just last season, the Patriots were defeated by the Eagles in a thrilling 41-33 finish. Every Patriots Super Bowl since 2001 was decided by 8 points or less. For the first time, that didn’t hppen. The usual offensive strike expected from the Patriots in the Super Bowl didn’t appear.
In the 2019 Super Bowl, both quarterbacks failed to throw a touchdown or even 300 yards. Gurley finished with a disappointing 10 carries and only 35 yards. At halftime, the Patriots led by a score of 3-0. It took 53 minutes of game time for running back Sony Michel to score the first and only touchdown of the game.
All in all, the Patriots defeated the Rams 13-3. Both offenses were awful and could barely enter opposing field territory throughout the game. This was especially shocking ,considering both teams defeated offensive juggernauts in previous playoff rounds. Any football fan would have predicted a shootout, but we were all wrong.
The halftime show was disappointing as well. Leading up to the performance, many famous artists such as Cardi B and Rihanna turned down offers to perform. Both artists said they turned down the performance to support Colin Kaepernick and his kneeling during the national anthem, which essentially cost him his career. Maroon 5 and Travis Scott ended up performing at the 2019 Super Bowl, and received backlash for not standing up in support of Kaepernick. Scott’s representatives released a statement saying Scott and Kaepernick came to an understanding about the performance. The controversy of the halftime show led to one of the worst halftime shows in Super Bowl history. Travis Scott only appeared on stage for about two minutes and more people paid attention to Adam Levine’s tattoos than his terrible singing performance.
With a boring game and disappointing halftime show, the Super Bowl was a letdown. According to Don Reisinger, writer for The Fortune, the 2019 Super Bowl finished with its lowest viewership since 2008.
If a certain pass interference call was made by officials in the NFC Championship game or a coin flip landed differently in the AFC Championship game, maybe we wouldn’t have had to watch the worst Super Bowl ever.