The New England Patriots have already played in seven Super Bowls during the Bill Belichick-Tom Brady era. The Pats beat the Rams in 2001, beat the Panthers in 2003, beat the Eagles in 2004, lost to the Giants in 2007 and 2011, beat the Seahawks in 2014, and beat the Falcons in 2016. So yeah, they're 5-2 in Super Bowls over the last 17 years. Pretty impressive stuff!
Even more impressive: check out the score at the end of the first quarter of each of those games:
- 2001: 3-0 Rams
- 2003: 0-0 Tie
- 2004: 0-0 Tie
- 2007: 3-0 Giants
- 2011: 9-0 Giants
- 2014: 0-0 Tie
- 2016: 0-0 Tie
Notice anything unusual there?
The Patriots' scores are all 0. They have not scored a single point in any of the seven first quarters of any Super Bowl they've played during this era of massive success. And they're still 5-2 in those games! That's INCREDIBLE.
Bill Belichick was asked about it this week, and he responded in classic Belichick fashion. "Look, we try to score in every game," he said, per the Boston Globe. "I know that's probably hard to understand, but we try to go out and score and keep the other team from scoring."
Of course. Apparently, Belichick brought up the Patriots' first-quarter futility prior to last year's Super Bowl. Per the Globe, there's a scene in the documentary "Do Your Job Part 2" where linebackers coach Brian Flores shared a story from the Patriots' coaches banquet.
"Coach Belichick prior to the game looked right at Tom Brady, he goes, 'Tom, we've been to six Super Bowls together and we've never scored a point in the first quarter. Can we get that done?' " Flores said. "I look around and I go man, we're going to score 30 points in the first quarter."
And then the game was tied at 0-0 after the first quarter anyway. In their seven prior Super Bowls under Belichick, the Pats are 4-0 when tied after the first quarter and 1-2 when trailing. We don't know what they might be like when leading after the first quarter because we've never seen it. Maybe by this time next week, we'll have a better idea.