Brady rallies Patriots to 28-24 Super Bowl win over Seahawks
Tom Brady threw four touchdown passes, Malcolm Butler intercepted Russell Wilson in the end zone and the New England Patriots rallied from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in the Super Bowl on Sunday.
Brady overcame two interceptions to lead the Patriots to their fourth Super Bowl championship, becoming the third quarterback along with Pittsburgh's Terry Bradshaw and San Francisco's Joe Montana to win four titles.
Brady, coach Bill Belichick and the Patriots needed three tries to win their fourth title since 2001. They lost to the New York Giants twice before dethroning the defending champion Seahawks.
After Jermaine Kearse made a twisting, turning, tumbling catch for a 33-yard gain to the Patriots 5, Marshawn Lynch ran 4 yards to the 1. But Wilson, operating from the shotgun, was intercepted on a pass intended for Ricardo Lockette.
Brady jumped up and down on the sideline and hugged Belichick to celebrate the win. A dejected Wilson walked off the field stunned.
As the Patriots (15-4) ran out the clock, players on both sides fought and Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin was ejected.
Down 10 to start the fourth, Brady rallied the Patriots with a 5-yard TD pass Danny Amendola in the back of the end zone and a 3-yarder to Julian Edelman with 2:02 left in the fourth for the go-ahead score.
With the Seahawks leading 24-14, the Patriots' defense held as Rob Ninkovich sacked Russell Wilson to force a punt. After Brady was sacked on the first play, he drove the offense 76 yards to get New England within a field goal. Brady's scoring strike to Amendola gave him a Super Bowl record 11 TD passes. Brady also set a Super Bowl record with 37 completions. He finished with 328 yards passing.
After Katy Perry's colorful halftime performance, the Seahawks came out firing.
Wilson threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin after Brady's second interception of the game and the Seahawks took a 24-14 lead over the Patriots going into the fourth.
Unknown receiver Chris Matthews had a breakout game in the first three quarters, making his first four career catches for 109 yards. Matthews, a cousin of Hall of Fame defensive end Reggie White, played in just three games before he made the crucial onside kick recovery in the NFC title game against Green Bay.
His first catch was a twisting 44-yard reception over Kyle Arrington to the Patriots 11. Two runs later, Lynch scored on third-and-goal from the 3. Matthews' next catch was an 11-yard TD with 2 seconds left in the second quarter. He had a 45-yard catch on the first series of the third quarter to set up Steven Hauschka's 27-yard field goal for a 17-14 lead.
On the ensuing possession by New England, All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner stepped in front of Brady's pass to Rob Gronkowski and returned 6 yards to the Patriots 34. Wilson had a 15-yard run and Lynch ran 14 yards before the TD pass to Baldwin, who drew an unsportsmanlike penalty for his celebration.
Brady, the first quarterback to start six Super Bowls, had only two interceptions in his first five. He threw his first pick in the end zone in the first quarter.
The teams got down to football under the open retractable roof at University of Phoenix Stadium after dealing with distractions far beyond typical Super Bowl hype over the past two weeks.
The Patriots are being investigated for using under-inflated footballs in their 45-7 win over Indianapolis in the AFC championship game.
Meanwhile, star running back Lynch was a daily sideshow for the Seahawks this week because he refused to answer questions from the media.
In the 12th matchup between No. 1 seeds since 1975 and the second in a row, the Seahawks (14-5) were trying to become the first team to win consecutive Super Bowls since the Patriots a decade ago. Seattle routed Denver 43-8 last year.
Brady bounced back after his first pick to throw his NFL record-setting 50th postseason TD pass - an 11-yarder to Brandon LaFell on the next drive. He threw a 22-yarder pass to Gronkowski with 31 seconds left in the second quarter to give the Patriots a 14-7 lead.
But the Seahawks answered quickly. Wilson drove them 80 yards on five plays in only 29 seconds.
Robert Turbin ran 19 yards. Wilson followed with a 17-yard run. Wilson then connected with Lockette for 23 yards and a facemask penalty away from the ball tacked on 10 yards.
Instead of kicking a field goal, the Seahawks ran one more play with 6 seconds remaining. Matthews beat Logan Ryan to make the catch.
Jeremy Lane made his first career interception on Brady's first poor throw and weaved his way to the 14 before Edelman knocked his own helmet off while making the tackle. Lane went to the locker room after being hurt on the return and was ruled out for the rest of the game with an arm injury.
The Patriots tied Dallas and Pittsburgh for most Super Bowl appearances with eight. They became the sixth franchise to win at least four. Brady and Belichick - the only coach-QB combo to reach six together - led the Patriots to three Super Bowl titles from 2001-04.
After John Legend delivered a stirring rendition of "America The Beautiful," Idina Menzel followed with a rousing performance of the national anthem. A pro-Seahawks crowd booed when Belichick was shown on the video screen during the anthem.
At halftime, the lights went out, and Perry took over the stadium with a spectacular concert that included Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliott.