So a buddy at work came up to me today and said, “Want to go get some coffee?” to which I replied, “I already got some,” which prompted him to say, “Any thoughts about the game?” I think my reply summed up Super Bowl XLI perfectly: “Pretty much what I expected.”
Now obviously, judging by my statement, I expected the Colts to win. There’s even some fellows who may or may not vouch for my predicted final score of 27-21; which wasn’t far off. But I’d have to be a pretty self-absorbed person to think that the fact that the game ended about the way I thought it would sums up the experience for everyone; so I want you to hear me out because I’m really not saying that.
This Super Bowl seemed unique to me because regardless of the outcome, the storyline was already prepared. If the Colts won, as they did, Peyton/Dungy finally got the monkey off of their collective back, and Grossman blew it; leading to the debates of whether Grossman should start for Chicago next year, and Brady-vs.-Petyon who’s-better-now-that-they-both-have-rings. If the Bears won, we’d be inundated with 1985 comparisons, and thoughtful pieces about complex players who just can’t win the games that history has decided are important.
Granted, last year’s outcome was scripted as well, with Jerome Bettis winning it all in his hometown, and then announcing his retirement; but had Seattle won, the media would have had to do their own writing without a script, and you can imagine the utter chaos that would have occurred had that scenario played out. So there was still some suspense.
Even still, the first half was actually quite surprising; featuring an opening kickoff return for a touchdown, five fumbles, and a botched PAT. All that stuff that happened between the whistles was surprising and riveting. It’s just too bad that the outcome was already written, so none of it could really impress any of us.