NFL 2020 Season Recap:
Brady is Still the GOAT After Exciting Playoffs
By Issac Rangel
The 2020 NFL season is over, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and quarterback Tom Brady winning the Super Bowl over last year’s champions, the Kansas City Chiefs. Here is an overall recap of how the season went.
Before it even started, there was some doubt on whether or not the new season should even happen due to the COVID-19 pandemic. There was confusion on how things would be scheduled around outbreaks, if it did happen, but they decided to just begin the new season anyways. In doing so, they had very strict health rules and protocols for the teams to follow. Every player had to keep getting tested over and over again every week. Only some teams allowed for there to be a limited number of fans in the stadium.
However, even with all the new rules and protocols players had to follow, there were still some players that would test positive. There were difficulties with teams schedules, and some of their games were postponed because of players testing positive. Even after all these problems the NFL was having, they still decided just to keep going. And even with all the protocols the teams had to follow, and with their not being able to be as much or any fans at all for some teams, it was still such an exciting and thrilling season, especially when the playoffs started.
Wild Card Round
The 3 NFC Wild Card games featured the Colts vs Bills, Rams vs Seahawks, and Buccaneers vs Washington. The Bills beat the Colts in a thrilling ball game, hanging on until the end and beating the Colts 27-24 for their first playoff victory since 1995. Shortly after the game, Colts quarterback Philip Rivers announced his retirement after just one season with Indianapolis. The Rams beat the Seahawks 30-20 even with their quarterback injury issues, while the Buccaneers beat Washington by a score of 31-23.
The following day were the 3 AFC Wild Card games which featured the Ravens vs Titans, Bears vs Saints, and Browns vs Steelers. The Ravens got their revenge in a heated matchup against the Titans and beat them by a score of 20-13. The Saints easily beat the Bears by a score of 21-9, and finally, the Browns pulled off a major upset, dominating the Steelers by beating them 48-37.
When the Divisional Round started, the 4 teams left from the NFC were now the Rams, Packers, Bucs, and #1 seed New Orleans Saints. The 4 teams left in the AFC were the Browns, Bills, Ravens, and top-seeded Kansas City Chiefs. The first game was between the Packers and the Rams. The Rams had a tough time because of the injuries suffered in their previous game against the Seahawks, and it didn’t help with one of their injured players being their best player–Defensive Player of the Year, Aaron Donald. He struggled all game trying to get through the O-line and to Rodgers, so his impact on the game was minimal. The Packers beat L.A. easily by a score of 32-18. Within a couple of weeks after the Rams elimination, they traded quarterback Jared Goff to the Detroit Lions for Matthew Stafford.
The next game was the Bills vs Ravens, and the Bills held the Ravens to only 3 points the whole game, winning by a score of 17-3; although, part of it had to do with Ravens QB Lamar Jackson getting injured and taken out of the game. The next day held the 2 top-seeded games of Browns vs Chiefs and Bucs vs Saints. The Chiefs beat the Browns in a close game by a score of 22-17. The Browns had a chance to win after Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was knocked out with a concussion, but they couldn’t convert late.
The Bucs vs Saints game was after that, and it was a very exciting and nerve-wracking game for Bucs fans. Both times that the Bucs and the Saints met in the regular season, Drew Brees and the Saints dominated Brady’s Bucs both times. However, this time, when it counted, Tampa Bay ended up winning a close game, 30-20.
Next up were the Conference Championships, the last two teams standing from the AFC were the Chiefs and the Bills, and the last two teams from the NFC were the Packers and the Bucs. The Chiefs and Bills game started off close and competitive, but eventually the Chiefs pulled away and dominated the rest of the game and beat the Bills 38-24.
Now it was time for the very hyped-up matchup between the Bucs and the Packers, mostly between Tom Brady and 2020 MVP Aaron Rodgers. Brady won the rivalry against Rodgers in a close game, which ended up being a 31-26 victory for the Bucs.
Super Bowl LV
Finally, this brought us to the last game of the season–Super Bowl 55. This year’s Super Bowl had a lot of quarterback hype to live up to: Brady vs Mahomes, which some people referred to it as GOAT vs Baby GOAT. There were high expectations from fans for this game, and most people expected it to go down to the wire and have a lot of intensity. Yet, that is totally the opposite of how it ended up going, as the Buccaneers dominated the whole game, and it was never even close. They held the Chiefs to only 3 field goals, which is crazy because this Chiefs team had never been shut down like that.
The final score was 31-9, and Tom Brady got his 7th ring–which is now more rings than any of the 32 NFL teams have. For Tampa Bay, this was their second Super Bowl victory, and their first since Super Bowl 37 when they defeated the Oakland Raiders in 2003.
(photo by MARK J. REBILAS, USA TODAY SPORTS)