11. Super Bowl LII, 2018: Philadelphia 41—New England 33
In the franchise’s unprecedented ninth Super Bowl appearance, the ageless Patriots of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick met an upstart Eagles team with a backup quarterback in Nick Foles and a little-known commodity in Head Coach Doug Pederson. Following a breathless three-hour track meet, the Eagles struck last and held off the Pats in a 41-33 shootout. A half-century into the game’s inception, Philadelphia has its first Super Bowl victory.
Competitiveness: 10 out of 10. A back and forth contest was marked by surprisingly poor defensive play on both sides of the ball. In a game dominated by skill position players on offense, both teams boasted standouts: Alshon Jeffery, Rob Gronkowski, and Zach Ertz all made plays for the ages.
Star Power: 8 out of 10. The terminally low-key Patriots coupled with the relative low-wattage Eagles was never going to be a glamorous meeting. With Brady and Gronk the only household names, it was up to Nick Foles and Corey Clement to liven the atmosphere. And they did!
Controversy/Intrigue: 9 out of 10. Without explanation, the Pats benched star cornerback and previous Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler. In the moment the move by Belichick appears capricious and ill-conceived – maybe there is more to the story. The Eagles are finally champions! That feels like a scandal itself.
Aftermath: 7 out of 10. Too soon to speculate, but it is possible that the Eagles just vanquished the last vestige of the Patriots dynasty.
Aggregate Score: 34 out of 40.
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