Super Bowl 53: Bay Area QBs set to do battle for Lombardi Trophy

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JANUARY 20: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots throws a pass in the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs during the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 20, 2019 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JANUARY 20: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots throws a pass in the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs during the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 20, 2019 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Two quarterbacks, both with Bay Area ties, meet in Super Bowl LIII as the New England Patriots look to add another trophy while the Los Angeles Rams hope to start a new dynasty.

Cool, calm, and poised under center, Tom Brady effectively marches down the field to victory. Facing an up-and-coming quarterback in Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, Brady let him know his chance will come at a later date.

In the AFC Championship, Brady stayed focused, twice having to lead the Patriots to earn another trip to the Super Bowl. After winning the coin toss to begin overtime, Brady dialed in, making sure his counterpart would not see the field. The result? A 37-31 triumph over the Chiefs.

At age 41, Brady is defying the odds of playing at a high level. His longevity is from a regimen he has done from the offseason through the length of a season to stay healthy. If New England’s offensive line can protect Brady, he could certainly play for a few more years.

By now, seeing the Patriots play in another Super Bowl could be getting old. For Tom Brady, appearing in his ninth Super Bowl is unprecedented. He is the model of consistency for an NFL quarterback and will go down as one of the greatest to ever play the game.

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Born in San Mateo, California, Brady is rooted from the teachings and lessons from Junipero Serra High School. Serra Padres learn to work hard and give back to the community, and, in the spirit of St. Junipero Serra, to never give up.

Brady made a perfect example of not stopping until the clock hit zero in Super Bowl 51. With an overwhelming deficit entering the second half, Brady rallied his team to even the score and capped an improbable comeback with an overtime victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

The thrill of victory is rewarding but from the teachings of St. Serra, sometimes dealing with pain and disappointment can sting.

With an opportunity to win back-to-back championships, Brady fell short in Super Bowl 52 as the fourth quarter proved costly. The result was the Philadelphia Eagles claiming their franchise-first championship to the delight of the City of Brotherly Love.

For Brady, losing is never easy, especially coming on the wrong end of the scoreboard in a big game. But throughout his career, Brady quickly gets over the disappointment, and consistently delivers big performances.

Love him or hate him, Brady is a great role model for his excellence on and off the field. Do not think for a moment Brady is spoiled. He gives back, especially to the Serra community, helping to fund students wanting to receive an education at Serra High School and his family makes donations to the athletic programs.

Now, a newcomer local to the Bay Area is looking to take center stage and start a career similar to Brady. A product of Marin Catholic and Cal, Jared Goff looks to lead the Rams to their first championship since moving from St. Louis back to Los Angeles.

The Rams should feel reluctant to be playing the Patriots for a championship. Controversy still rages on after a few pass interference penalties did not get called during the NFC Championship matchup. Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints could be playing instead, but the Rams came away with the win in overtime.

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Regardless of the result, the error by the officiating is just another black eye by the failed tenure of Roger Goodell as the NFL commissioner. His attempt to bring down Brady over the nonsense of “DeflateGate” was petty and sad. The NFL is likely heading for another lockout and Goodell will be the culprit for not having a clue.

Back to Goff… As the former quarterback of the Cal Bears is looking to make a name for himself. His decision to leave early for the draft left questions if Goff could even be a legitimate starter on Sundays. Goff did light up the Pac-12 in passing yards, but his mobility under pressure was one area of concern.

A true freshman who got the starting job for the Bears, a big learning curve became apparent. Goff undoubtedly forced throws, often leading to interceptions. And yet, by his junior year, his stats reached career highs in passing with 43 touchdowns and a 161 QB rating.

Cal has produced multiple quarterbacks who have gone on to play in Super Bowls. Aaron Rodgers was the previous quarterback from Berkeley to appear in one and led the Green Bay Packers over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl 45. Goff hopes to deliver one as well.

For the Rams, pressure on Brady is an absolute necessity to have any chance to knock off the Patriots. Kansas City failed to consistently pressure the pocket, allowing Brady to execute, especially late in the game. The Patriots’ offensive line should expect a heavy dose of blitz packages by the Rams’ defensive line led by Aaron Donald.

Todd Gurley II and C.J. Anderson provide a 1-2 punch for the Rams’ rushing attack. Although Gurley’s health and effectiveness is up in air, his teammates expect him to be ready as he is important for the Rams’ success offensively.

No matter the receivers on the Patriots, Brady is going to make plays. Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski stepped up in critical moments against Kansas City. The two will likely be called upon to have similar impact performances.

My final prediction: the Patriots beat the Rams, 35-27.

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Super Bowl LIII pits a tried and true process of Brady and the Patriots against a young Rams team, both looking to hoist the Vince Lombardi Trophy at the end. Fan or not of the two sides, an entertaining battle is at hand. At the very least, the commercials and halftime show will provide entertainment.