A record-breaking Super Bowl LIII

Last night, the New England Patriots went head-to-head with the Los Angeles Rams, and won Super Bowl LIII, with a final score of 13 to 3, the lowest score in Super Bowl history.  After a controversial playoff game between the Rams and New Orleans Saints, the Patriots scored their sixth Super Bowl win at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia. To enhance football fans’ live experience, new technologies upgraded the stadium and the stadium’s performance.  The Pepsi-sponsored-halftime show featured Maroon 5, Mr. Travis Scott, and Mr. Antwan André Patton also known as Big Boi.  

In the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, there was a dispute about a penalty call during the National Football Conference (NFC) Championship game between the New Orleans Saints and the Los Angeles Rams, Sunday, January 20.  Late in game’s fourth quarter, the Rams and the Saints were tied.  The Rams cornerback Mr. Nickell Robey-Coleman targeted the Saints receiver Mr. Tommylee Lewis before the ball’s arrival, this play is known as pass interference.  This illegal play caused wide controversy over whether the play would have prevented the Saints from advancing to the Super Bowl.  

Super Bowl LIII was the Patriots’ 11th Super Bowl appearance and their sixth Super Bowl win.  It was the Patriots’ quarterback, Mr. Tom Brady’s ninth Super Bowl.  Last year, the Patriots lost in the Super Bowl to the Philadelphia Eagles, with the final score being 41 to 33.

Ms. Gladys Knight performing the national anthem for the Super Bowl LIII.  Courtesy of AJ Mast for The New York Times

Beginning the evening Ms. Gladys Knight, American singer and songwriter, sang her rendition of the national anthem, and afterward, a formation of jets performed a flyover over the stadium.  Once the stadium’s roof closed, both teams’ captains came together for the coin toss.  The Patriots called heads and lost the toss, but Rams declined to start the game.  The Patriots received the ball, and the game began.

During the first quarter of the game, neither the Patriots nor the Rams were able to advance the ball resulting in a score of 0-0.  On the Patriots first drive, Rams’ cornerback Mr. Robey-Coleman tipped a pass intended for New England’s Mr. Chris Hogan, enabling the Rams’ linebacker, Mr. Cory Littleton to intercept the ball.

The Patriots had better luck during the second quarter when Mr. Tom Brady threw the ball to Mr. Rob Gronkowski from the Rams’ 32-yard line which ended with another New England drive.  A few plays later, the Patriots picked up another first down.  But, Mr. Brady’s throw was incomplete, and his pass to Mr. Patterson fell short when the Rams’ Mr. Marcus Peters knocked Mr. Patterson down.  While the Rams’ defense stopped the Patriots’ drive, Mr. Gostkowski managed to make his second field goal, after missing the first one, earning the Patriots a score of three, heading into halftime, while the Rams still had zero.

Mr. Travis Scott ending his performance at the halftime show by falling on top of the crowd.
Courtesy of AJ Mast for The New York Times

The halftime show featured pop-band Maroon 5, which has sold over 53 million albums and 48 million singles.  American rapper’s Mr. Travis Scott and Big Boi were guest performers.  Maroon 5 started off the performance with “Harder to Breathe,” from their album Songs About Jane released in 2002.  Mr. Scott joined the performance by lighting the stage on fire and singing one of his hit songs “Sicko Mode.”  Big Boi appeared in a vintage convertible signing the Outkast hit “The Way You Move.”  

The Rams’ punter Mr. Johnny Hekker forced the Patriots’ position back by achieving the record for the longest punt in Super Bowl history: 65 yards.  The Rams’ defense prevented the Patriots from advancing, allowing the Rams’ to establish their longest offensive drive of the game ending with a 53-yard field goal from Mr. Zuerlein, giving the Rams their only three points of the game.

The fourth quarter began with a tied score of 3-3.  The Patriots’ Mr. Sony Michel at the two-yard line then made the only touchdown of the game.  The Patriots’ defense was able to hold off the Rams drive, late in the game.  Bringing Patriots their victory, Mr. Gostkowski kicked a 41-yard field goal scoring another three points totaling the score 13-3. 
The Patriots’ Mr. Edelman received the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for his outstanding plays in the game, according to usatoday.com.

The Mercedes-Benz Stadium set the stage for this historic game.  Although it is home to the Atlanta Falcons, the owner of the Falcons Mr. Aurthur Blank wanted to ensure that it was designed to host an array of important events, according to cbssports.com.  To change football fans experience, the Mercedes-Benz Stadium partnered with International Business Machines Corporation (IBM).  The stadium incorporates many different technologies created to work together as a unified system, according to ibm.com.

IBM, founded in 1911, is an American multinational information technology company known for being one of the largest computer companies in the world, according to searchitchannel.techtarget.com.  Currently, IBM is expanding with their Cloud software and services allowing customers to experience a cloud platform that spans public, private and hybrid environments, according to ibm.com.  Recently, IBM partnered with Sacred Heart Greenwich to advance women’s education in the Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) field.

The Mercedes-Benz Stadium being constructed in May 2017. Courtesy of mercedesbenzstadium.com

Mr. Pete Lorenzen serves as IBM’s General Manager, Industry Group, Global Technology Services.  This role requires Mr. Lorenzen to develop specific industry propositions within Infrastructure Services at IBM.  Mr. Lorenzen is also responsible for the development and the deployment of stadium and entertainment solutions.  He oversaw the implementation services that IBM performed for the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.  Mr. Lorenzen also commented on how the fan experience at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium is unlike any other.

“IBM is the backbone of how 71,000 fans experienced Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Sunday.  For the biggest football game of the year, the fan experience was unlike any other,” Mr. Lorenzen said.  “Whether you rooted for the Patriots or the Rams, you experienced lightning fast connectivity to upload real-time videos and photos, all on a free Wi-Fi network.  Everyone shared the excitement thanks to the state of the art connectivity that is controlled by IBM Cloud.”

Senior Olivia Batal, attended last nights Super Bowl and commented on the experience as well as the stadium’s features.

“Watching the Super Bowl live is such an exhilarating experience.  I actually didn’t know that the stadium was updated,” Olivia said.  “However, they had this cool screen set up that was different from the normal stadium screens.  They showed the stats and the game on the screen, as most stadiums do, but it was longer so I could see more.  It was really helpful for me because I wasn’t exactly the tallest person there and it helped me to see the game when I wasn’t able to.”

Featured Image by Christine Guido ’20