By Deborah Howell

By Deborah Howell

In my humble opinion, yesterday’s Big Game  (we’re not allowed to call it the S-bowl for legal reasons) was one of the all-time greatest in history–even without my Minnesota Vikings suiting up. I loved irresistible  match-up of 5-time winning QB Tom Brady against a guy who was thinking of quitting football until he went on a camping trip with his brother-in-law and reconsidered.  Thought he’d give it one more try.  And Nick Foles is now MVP of S-bowl 52–and no one can ever take that away from him! I think he’s pretty glad he went on that camping trip!  Methinks he MIGHT not be second-string QB for The Eagles next season….although he’s said that he’ll do whatever his coaches tell him to do.

And who would have thought Foles’ first-ever pass reception in the NFL would be a game-winning TD catch against the Patriots, who tried a similar trick play earlier in the game, but QB Brady just couldn’t quite hold onto the ball.   (!!!)

Two missed extra point kicks added to the drama, as did record-high yardage achieved by both teams. And that BOLD, BRASH Eagles move by Coach Doug Pederson to tell his team to go for two points instead of taking the safe kick for the extra point…..just WOW! That is the stuff bravery is made of.

Halftime was a kick with JT sporting Stella McCartney gear and giving fans a cornucopia of his hits, plus a taste of his new album, “Man of the Woods.”  I loved the marching band joining in on “Suit & Tie”, but where he really got me was when the huge hologram of Prince went up, lit in all purple, and then neighborhood by neighborhood, block by block the city of Minneapolis turned purple.  I was born in Minneapolis and went to many a Vikings game with my family –before there were such things as retractable domes to keep fans and players toasty warm even in sub-zero weather.

I have fond memories of sitting next to my dad in our purple “People Bags” that were sort of like sleeping bags but also covered your head.  It was tricky trying to drink your hot chocolate when all your limbs were cocooned inside your People Bag, but somehow we managed. Cheering when your cheeks were frozen solid was a rite of passage.  And the Vikings caught those passes in snow, sleet, rain, hail and ice–without gloves!  The defensive line was called The Purple People Eaters and they were every bit as tough as their Viking ancestors.  So yeah, I shed a few tears of happy memories when my town turned purple.

Then there was the nail-biting part of the game where we didn’t know if the Eagles’ jaw-dropping touchdown reception would be called back.  And this happened TWICE!!!  And the Eagles hung onto both of those TD’s with their fierce Eagle claws as the Philly-favoring crowd lost its collective mind!  Unreal!

Cheers and kudos to both teams for a game extremely well played, and unbelievably entertaining.

Will be watching the Eagles first-ever S-bowl Victory Parade on Thursday, ALMOST as happy as if it were my Vikings marching down the Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis under millions of purple lights.  And that’s saying something!

What’s your take on the game?

P.S.  My fave commercial was hands down the Doritos Blaze vs. Mountain Dew Ice with Peter Dinklage and Morgan Freeman.  Yours?





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