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Conflicted rooting for Atlanta/Super Bowl Prediction

Back in 1999, the Atlanta Falcons played the Minnesota Vikings for the NFC championship. Minnesota went into this game HEAVY favorites and rolling over everyone with a combo of Cris Carter, Randall Cunningham, and....wait for it.....Randy Moss. Moss is one of my all time favorite athletes of all time and I was sure that this would be the first of his multiple rings he would get in his career. That year, Atlanta was a ragtag group led by running back Jamal Anderson. They were finding ways to beat other teams and even had a catchy dance called the 'Dirty Bird'. They were a fun group to root for and had no pressure going into the game. Long story short, the Vikings had (just named a Hall of Famer in 2017) legendary kicker Morten Anderson miss a kick he would have made 99 out of a 100 times to win the game and eventually lost in overtime to the Falcons. The Falcons of course then got killed in the Super Bowl. So I had always had that game in the back of my mind while rooting for them. Add to the fact that I am now a Carolina Panthers fan, I have conflicting emotions rooting for them.

Speaking of the Panthers, they also got killed in last years Super Bowl to the Broncos who were led by Peyton Manning (really the defense). So I really don't have a team that I am 'rooting' for. I will probably go for Atlanta, but something tells me that QB Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick have something up their sleeve for this game. So with that background, here's my prediction:

New England: 35

Atlanta: 21

Yep, I'm picking the Patriots. Keep in mind, I also picked the Panthers (loss) and the Tar Heels (loss) to win. I did however correctly pick Cleveland to upset the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, so who knows?

Remember to take care of yourselves.

- John Cannady

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