From the Boston Globe’s Eric Wilbur, February 6, 2012
What an embarrassment for the Patriots organization and Bob Kraft. So now the Giants have taken Lombardi from you twice, and you haven’t looked this bad in a playoff game since…well, two weeks ago against the Ravens. Maybe that moment will actually hit you as you’re whittling down water slides in South America looking like Prince Valiant this spring.
Your legacy has been stamped, but you’re turning your Joe Montana status into one of Jim Kelly. But, hey what you worry? There’s that new mansion in the “Names” pages to deal with.
That was Wilbur’s take on Tom Brady’s performance in Super Bowl XLVI, a somewhat hysterical, nearly Shaughnessey-level evisceration of the only New England QB to have won one Super Bowl, let alone three. After being pilloried throughout the blogosphere, Wilbur has today apologized (sort of), claiming “I never intended Sunday night’s column, written in the immediate aftermath of the Patriots’ loss, o garner quite the widespread attention – and negativity.” In other words, Wilbur had no idea whatsoever he was writing something kinda provocative that would be seen by anyone beyond his closest friends.
To the dozens who have pointed out my follically-challenged scalp (thanks, I hadn’t noticed), called me a hack, loser, or some other unprintable expletive, and even the tough guy who promised to put my head (that’s “cue ball” head, sir) through a wall if he spotted me in Boston, consider this my repentance.
I still think Tom Brady was most at fault for the loss, but it wasn’t directly because of the safety as I noted. Granted, it did lead to forcing the defense on the field for most of the first quarter, but it wasn’t the quarterback who happened to be the 12th man on the field. I didn’t take into account how hurt he might have been when he tremendously underthrew that ball to Rob Gronkowski, but if he knew he was hurting, his decision-making process there should have been better. Yes, Wes Welker should have caught the ball, but it also could have been thrown with more accuracy. Again, I didn’t take into account how Brady’s possible injury may have affected his performance.
But rational thinking doesn’t come to head in such a moment, and frankly, that was my intention; to present the knee-jerk reactions of what the fan base had to be feeling at that very moment. As it turned out, there was little anger directed toward the Patriots. Disappointment, yes, but the anger was at a minimum.
That, apparently, was reserved for me.