Patriots' Night: The Unofficial Offcial Super Bowl LI Timeline

New England Patriots' James White runs for a touchdown as Atlanta Falcons' Deion Jones attempts to defend during overtime of the NFL Super Bowl 51 football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017, in Houston. The Patriots defeated the Falcons 34-28. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)




Jan. 22, 2017 - We settle in for an NFL championship Sunday doubleheader, which proves to be about as much fun to watch as a movie starring Will Smith and one of his kids. Atlanta advances to its second Super Bowl, and New England goes to its 73rd.

Jan. 29, 2017 - The Pro Bowl happens, with Kirk Cousins playing for the NFC, thus invalidating the entire concept of "all-star games."

Feb. 2, 2017 - Atlanta's mayor issues an order allowing bars to stay open later after the Super Bowl, which will either turn out to be the best thing ever or the worst thing ever. Or, knowing Atlanta, possibly both.

Feb. 5, 2017, noon Central Time - FOX's pregame show begins, featuring random concerts, heartwarming stories and a lot of plugs for TV sports discussion shows that no one will watch.

5:15 p.m. - Both teams are introduced with a video package featuring them in an old-timey saloon, presumably because that's what people who aren't from Texas think Houston is like. In reality, to get the actual feel of Houston they should have had the player vignettes set in a chemical plant.

5:26 p.m. - The national anthem is performed by one of those country music guys with two first names.

5:28 p.m. - A commercial airs with Scarlett Johansson as a robot, leading men all over the world to immediately consider that possibility as an investment.

5:36 p.m. - Super Bowl LI kicks off, brought to you by superheroes, George Takei, and a lot of timely commercials that are vaguely about getting along with each other.

5:40 p.m. - On their opening drive, the Patriots go three plays and prepare to punt.

5:41 p.m. - President Trump signs an executive order granting Tom Brady five downs.

5:42 p.m. - Referee Carl Cheffers calls a penalty on Atlanta. Somewhere, Travis Kelce goes on a profane rant that makes everyone else at his Super Bowl party quite uncomfortable.

6:05 p.m. - The first quarter ends with both teams scoreless. Gamblers who took the "under" begin to celebrate.

6:07 p.m. - A commercial airs where Arnold Schwarzenegger plays an app that blows things up.

6:08 p.m. - President Trump tweets that Arnold's app is "SAD!" and promises to create his own app that will blow things up "even more bigly."

6:16 p.m. - Inspired by a turnover and a Justin Bieber commercial, the Falcons take a 7-0 lead.

6:25 p.m. - Taylor Gabriel makes a catch for Atlanta, and Joe Buck points out Gabriel was cut by the Browns, which officially makes him the luckiest man in the world.

6:28 p.m. - The Falcons score and lead 14-0. Boston fans begin to complain again how their sports teams never get a break, and how they've only won 10 championships in the last 15 years.

6:44 p.m. - Tom Brady throws an interception that Robert Alford returns for a touchdown. At Super Bowl parties everywhere, funny guys say the turnover left Brady "deflated." People pretend to laugh.

7:04 p.m. - Halftime, Falcons lead 21-3. Roger Goodell feels better about his chances of not having to hand Tom Brady any awards that might lead to awkward moments, DeflateGate discussions, or Brady's dad taking a swing at Goodell.

7:07 p.m. - The halftime recap is brought to us by Alfa Romeo, who apparently thinks the average sports fan has quite a lot of disposable income. That contrasts with other Super Bowl advertisers who are trying to sell us beer, soda and tacos with shells made from chicken parts.

7:14 p.m. - Lady Gaga performs. Her halftime show seems to be what movies in the 70s thought the future was going to look like.

7:24 p.m. - Lady Gaga ends her show by what appears to be ritual suicide, which might be a good idea for future events.

7:30 p.m. - Halftime ends. For some reason, Fox goes to a special reporter just to tell us how many people were posting on social media about the halftime show. I guess they're trying to remind us no matter how good something is, as a society we're just not going to put down our phones to stop talking about how much we're enjoying it.

7:54 p.m. - The Falcons score again to go up 28-3. Somewhere in his underground bunker, Roger Goodell sits alone in his chair, petting a white cat and watching the game saying only "…Good. Gooooooood."

7:56 p.m. - A commercial airs for the new "The Fast and the Furious" movie, starring The Rock, Vin Diesel, Kurt Russell, Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren, Hugh Jackman, Morgan Freeman, Corey Feldman, Groot, Eleven, Crazy Eyes, the cast of "Hamilton," and a cameo by Rob Gronkowski as a Hummer driver.

8:06 p.m. - The Patriots get a touchdown, but Stephen Gostkowski misses the extra point. When he jogs to the sideline, Bill Belichick rips Gostkowski's heart from his chest, muttering "Kali ma."

8:10 p.m. - New England tries an onside kick but misses, and the cameras catch Belichick on the sidelines saying "…," which only serves to remind us that FOX's reboot of "24" doesn't look very good without Jack Bauer.

8:37 p.m. - The Patriots cause a fumble for Matt Ryan, which leads to a New England touchdown. And a two-point conversion. And a Yahtzee.

8:48 p.m. - Julio Jones makes an all-time highlight reel catch, because that's what receivers always do against the Patriots in the Super Bowl.

8:54 p.m. - Atlanta punts it to New England with less than four minutes to go in the game, thus setting up Tom Brady for a game-tying drive. At this point, that order that keeps Atlanta bars open late tonight seems like it's going to wind up with a lot of people in Falcons jerseys taking gutter naps.

8:59 p.m. - Julian Edelman makes a phenomenal catch of his own that goes under official review. In a promotional tie in, the ruling is upheld by Homer Simpson.

9:05 p.m. - The Patriots score a touchdown and a two-point conversion to tie the game and for the first time in Super Bowl history, we go to overtime.

9:25 p.m. - The Patriots win 34-28. Tom Brady claims his fifth Super Bowl title, then sprouts wings and ascends into the Heavens. Belichick considers giving him the first four games off next season too.


- Reid Kerr talks a lot, as his wife always reminds him. Reid's second book, "I Hate It Here: A Love Story," is out now on You can always tweet questions, comments, and angry messages to him at @reidaboutit.


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