Facing the hated Patriots, the Falcons are now America’s Team

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick watches from the sideline during the second half of the AFC championship NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sunday, Jan. 22, 2017, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Mr. Warmth. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

The Atlanta Falcons aren’t just going to the Super Bowl. They’re going as the choice of everyone who isn’t a New England fan, and why would you be a New England fan if you don’t, you know, live in New England? Maybe the folks in New Orleans will root against the Men of Quinn — the way Atlantans did against the Saints when they lucked up and won that Super Bowl — but those in Texas and Tennessee and California and Colorado and both Carolinas?

They just became Bird-lovers.

Because the Patriots, as great as they have been and are, aren’t revered. They’re reviled. There’s that lingering suspicion that their coach and their franchise quarterback cheated along the way. Lose to Pete Carroll and you tip your hat. Lose to Belichick/Brady and you want to chew nails.

We’ll have more about the matchup tomorrow, but the early lines have the Patriots as a three-point favorite. That’s not much, and I’m betting, as it were, that it shrinks over the next fortnight. The Falcons just blew out Pete Carroll’s team and then Aaron Rodgers’. They can win this game.

Further reading: A Super day – Atlanta domination, Atlanta validation.

Reader Comments 0

174 comments
TomK52
TomK52

Deleted.

Double Post.

TomK52
TomK52

Mr. Bradley,

As a Californian who grew up in Boston...

Atlanta is a great city. I've been thru once and had a great time, meeting a bunch of warm, welcoming people. That is one significant civic characteristic that Atlanta has over Boston.

And the Falcons are a great organization & superb team. Even though I'll be rooting for the other side, best of luck to you. i hope everyone (on both sides) comes thru without injury. And, whoever wins, whoever loses, both teams & both cities should be proud.
__

But I want to discuss your reference to "cheating". Specifically Deflategate. You are right. The vast majority of the country thinks that the Pats manipulated the pressure in their footballs.

Do you know whose fault that is?

Look in the mirror, sir.
It is your fault.

"You" as a representative of the media, that is.

Because you guys choose to be incompetent at your job.

A competent reporter would NOT ask ex-football players, or referees, or NFL bureaucrats, or talking heads, or lawyers or fans or OTHER REPORTERS about the technical aspects of the interaction between pressure, temperature & water absorption in footballs. All of those people are clueless amateurs.

A competent reporter would ask a real expert: a mechanical or chemical engineer, or physicist ... WITH experience in gas statics & experimental methods.

(someone like ... me.)

I do not expect reporters to know about gas statics. I DO expect them to have a functional epistemology, so that they may learn the truth about topics outside of their expertise. This is "Journalism 101".

There are at least 10,000 such experts in the US. Every single one of us is laughing our tails off at the incompetence of the media at getting this story correct. Every competent researcher (except one) came to the same conclusion after running the experiments: "nobody let any air out of any footballs in the 2014 AFC CC game. The pressure was exactly where Mother Nature dictates that it should have been, for that temperature & rain water exposure."


The one exception: Exponent Inc. Ted Wells' "Litigation Engineers"

A vote of approximately 15 to 1 should raise a boatload of red flags for a good reporter.

So how did we get to this crazy endpoint? Simple: Ted Wells & Exponent's Hired Guns (NOT engineers!) lied thru their teeth. Then Roger Goodell lied thru his teeth.

If you have any competence or ethics as a reporter, it is YOUR JOB to expose this.

And the exposure is trivially easy.

Go to Goodell & DEMAND that he release the pressure data that the NFL monitored, in all teams' footballs, over the course of the 2015 season.

That data PROVES that nobody let any air out of any footballs. That every single teams football's pressure "deflated" on exactly the same temperature & water exposure schedule as did the Pats' & Colts' footballs during that game.

When Goodell announced (in Feb. 2016) that he was continuing with the prosecution of Brady, he had all that data in hand, & KNEW that Brady & the Pats organization were innocent.

When one of your colleagues asked him to release the pressure data, he replied, "We said we were going to monitor the data. We never said we would release the data."

There is only one reason that Goodell refuses to release that data: because it exonerates Brady & the Pats.

And you sports reporters meekly ACCEPTED this ludicrous stance.?!! Huntley, Brinkley, Cronkite, Murrow & Bradlee would all roll over in their graves at such credulous incompetence & submissiveness.!

Mr. Bradley, please DO YOUR JOB.!

Demand that Goodell release that data.

This data will finally close the book on this sordid affair.

Then you will find out who has been lying, & who has been telling the truth all along.

And, if you have any Southern pride or decency, you'll prepare a sincere apology to Mr. Brady.

David Mark Belcher
David Mark Belcher

I would anticipate any team playing the Pats would be America's team.  Last week it was Pittsburgh.  Doesn't mean you have developed national loyalty.  People who bet on the team they want to win are soon parted from their money.  You should bet on who you expect will beat the spread.

TideDawg
TideDawg

There's a lot of Patriot fans on the blogs. What's the state of football in your area(Patriots excluded)?

whydoyouwannaknow
whydoyouwannaknow

Dwight Freeney goes out the way God intended. Last play of the game, the "Patsies" down by 7 at midfield; Brady scrambles to buy time, Freeney plows Brady INTO Belichick on the sideline. Time expires, and the two New England d-bags are taken to the hospital for precautionary x-rays as the Falcons celebrate the win. 

Peter Dale
Peter Dale

The Falcons are the hated team !!

Wayne N Jenn
Wayne N Jenn

I'm pulling for the Falcons, but there's only one Americas Team!

Nappily EverAfter
Nappily EverAfter

I've been a Falcons fan since forever so eff who doesn't like them. I'm always gonna represent for the home team!

Nappily EverAfter
Nappily EverAfter

Who cares? Let them hate from the couch with the rest of their teams \U0001f604

Wayne Tucker
Wayne Tucker

Well where have the falcons been for the last twenty years? They have a good team and I wish them well. However you may not like the Patriots but one thing is for sure, they are a team not a group of individuals like the steelers. The team is what matters and it shows when they play. Listening to the pregame crap you would have thought the Steelers would only have to show up to win. They looked like they played each player for himself bickering when things didn't go their way. Great game Patriots. Good luck in the Super Bowl. You will still be my team win or lose.

Bob Stewart
Bob Stewart

Hahaha!!! The Patriots and who Is playing??

Dan Curran
Dan Curran

When you finally make the Super Bowl, but realize you have to play the New England Patriots. #GOPATS #NewEngland #GOAT #WeAreNewEngland

Brian Baker
Brian Baker

I need to win the lottery. But if I do get sun and mon off, Atlanta could be a option . #GOAT #PATS

Dan Curran
Dan Curran

Brian Baker hell yeah!!\U0001f3c8\U0001f3c8\U0001f389\U0001f389

Brian Baker
Brian Baker

Since we both live far away from home, I feel the hatred of Patriots down here. We cheat , or they are sick of us winning. I hear it all. #GOPATS #TheLastJedi

SeenItBefore
SeenItBefore

A Pats fan pulled the fire alarm at the Steeler's hotel the night before the AFC Championship game and woke the team up at 3am.  What else would you expect from America's Favorite Cheating Team?

StevePatriot
StevePatriot

@SeenItBefore 

It happens all around the nfl. The night before the superbowl 2 years ago when the Pats beat the Seahawks, the fire alarm at the Patriots hotel was pulled twice in the early morning. Did the Pats piss and moan and cry and make excuses? No, they went out and won.  It seems like there are  a lot of Atlanta fans in these comments already trying to make excuses for their team. Whiners whine, winners win.

Paul Voorhees
Paul Voorhees

Patriots have a unique way of cheating. Changes every year.

Nathan Farrar
Nathan Farrar

They still hate us. Its alright, though. It's going to be pretty sweet listening to the postgame scramble for excuses.

Robert Korey
Robert Korey

Atlanta first start showing respect for your 4x World Champ Evander Holyfield, brought you more world titles than all ATL pro teams combined - long overdue

Mr. Math Expert
Mr. Math Expert

Atlanta is "America's team?"


Jesus Christ.


Everybody is rooting for New England to win, and they will win without a problem.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@Mr. Math Expert

"Everybody"???

That ended any hope you may have had for validity on here. 

What a delusional dinkleberry you are.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@StevePatriot

You mean like your fellow jerk, Mr. Math Expert, who stupidly proclaims that "everybody" is rooting for NE???


Bud Keck
Bud Keck

They are both americas team

Chuck Jakubisin
Chuck Jakubisin

Hated? The finest franchise of the last 20 years is hated? You hate success, especially the kind Belechick consistently produces. Go Pats!

Ross Barnard
Ross Barnard

We are bored! Where is the fun in seeing the same team win all the time?

Tony Price
Tony Price

They're not hated America just don't like cheaters

Dsm Mabs
Dsm Mabs

Every team has cheated at some point

Jaz McIntosh
Jaz McIntosh

I like the Falcons but the Pats are just a better team all around.

Shon Kemp
Shon Kemp

Oooohhh the hate is SO real!!! #RISEUP

Terry Peets
Terry Peets

Wish it could be the Colts but i'll be pulling for the Falcons and a great super bowl game for all to watch.\U0001f3c8\U0001f3c8\U0001f3c8\U0001f1fa\U0001f1f8\U0001f1fa\U0001f1f8\U0001f1fa\U0001f1f8

sting_em
sting_em

Life long Atlanta Falcons fan. The Falcon's 2nd Superbowl in my 48  years. Can't wait for this game. Some of my favorite players as a kid were Steve Barkowski, William Andrews, Mike Kenn & Billy "White Shoes" Johnson. Julio and Matt are starting to get up with those guys.


When they win this thing, they will beat the crowds in DC for the Woman's March, Obama's & Turmp's Inaugurals, and the Cub's parades.


Was rooting for NE to beat Pitt. Better team, better franchise since 2002 or 1998 when the Falcons were last in. If you want to be classified as an elite organization, first you must beat the best team and the Pats are the best. Then do it again and again. I can't wait to see what Julio, Matt & the Birds can do.


RISE UP!!!!!!!!!!!

Big Wally
Big Wally

Amazing how these Patriot fans are so sensitive.  Bring up all their cheating scandals and it's like someone took their deflated balls away from them.   Talk about whiners.  





Chris Smith2001
Chris Smith2001

@Big Wally Pump Some more Fake Cheering and Noise into the Stadium Please. That way the headsets will not work!

JACKINHAVERHILLL
JACKINHAVERHILLL

@Big Wally 

Wally, Pat's fans constantly having to deal with dopes who actually think Brady deflated footballs is like dealing with liberals who think Hillary isn't a liar and corrupt.

No matter how many times you point out the facts they still don't believe the truth.


Geytta Lyffe
Geytta Lyffe

@Big Wally The crowd noise is too loud, I can't hear what you are saying.  Can you tell me how the footballs got deflated in the Steelers vs Giants game?  Is pumping in crowd noise cheating Big Wally?