Super Bowl LI analyst predictions: Patriots or Falcons in Houston?

Will Tom Brady and Bill Belichick notch their fifth Lombardi Trophy in New England? Can Matt Ryan and Co. win the first Super Bowl title in Falcons history? Who will steal the spotlight? Which moment will be talked about in years to come? Our analysts provide their predictions for Super Bowl LI.

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** As much as people talk about Atlanta's offense, the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) did 
[rank third in the league in scoring](http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?tabSeq=2&season=2016&seasonType=REG&offensiveStatisticCategory=GAME_STATS&role=TM&d-447263-n=1&d-447263-o=2&d-447263-p=1&conference=ALL&d-447263-s=TOTAL_POINTS_GAME_AVG) at 27.6 points per game. That explosiveness and New England's experience on this stage will be problematic for the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL). 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile) won't be the difference maker in this game that people suspect. Bill Belichick loves to take away an opponent's strength -- and Jones is surely that for Atlanta. 

New England Patriots 31, Atlanta Falcons 27

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** This is subject to change, but I'm going with the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) right now. I think 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) and Co. will take full advantage of the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL)' young defense. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** Brady rushes for a touchdown. 

Atlanta Falcons 27, New England Patriots 24

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** 
[Tevin Coleman](/player/tevincoleman/2552453/profile) will be the deciding factor with a game-changing play. 
**MVP:** Matt Ryan 
**Bold prediction:** There will be zero turnovers. 

New England Patriots 31, Atlanta Falcons 26

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** In a game with long drives, few possessions and even fewer stops, the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) defense's ability to force field goals in the red zone will be the difference. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Dion Lewis](/player/dionlewis/2495469/profile) will lead the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) in receiving with more than 100 yards. 

New England Patriots 24, Atlanta Falcons 21

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** New England's defense takes away the big plays from 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile) and contains the running of 
[Devonta Freeman](/player/devontafreeman/2543583/profile). 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Julian Edelman](/player/julianedelman/238498/profile) comes up big. 

Atlanta Falcons 31, New England Patriots 27

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** Though both defenses have played well throughout the playoffs, I believe this is going to be an offensive showcase. We're going to see numerous big plays downfield from both quarterbacks, but 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) is going to be just a tad better than 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile). 
**MVP:** Matt Ryan 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile) will have 150 receiving yards. 

New England Patriots 35, Atlanta Falcons 31

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** Ultimately, 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) will have the ball last. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Austin Hooper](/player/austinhooper/2555415/profile) has three TDs. 

New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 28

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** Bill Belichick is the best coach ever, with two weeks to prepare for this juggernaut 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) offense. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** X-factors 
[Devin McCourty](/player/devinmccourty/494287/profile) and 
[LeGarrette Blount](/player/legarretteblount/497149/profile) make contributions. And 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) takes the trophy from Roger Goodell. 

Atlanta Falcons 34, New England Patriots 27

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** The 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) love to take away a team's primary weapon. But that's hard to do when you have the panoply of options that 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) and the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) possess. 
**MVP:** Tevin Coleman 
**Bold prediction:** Coleman sets a record for most receiving yards by a running back in the 
[Super Bowl](http://www.nfl.com/superbowl). 

New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 24

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** It will be difficult for the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE)' defense to hold the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) to this point total, more than a touchdown below 
[their average](http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?tabSeq=2&season=2016&seasonType=REG&offensiveStatisticCategory=GAME_STATS&role=TM&d-447263-n=1&d-447263-o=2&d-447263-p=1&conference=ALL&d-447263-s=TOTAL_POINTS_GAME_AVG). It's also more than a touchdown above what 
[New England allows](http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?tabSeq=2&season=2016&seasonType=REG&role=OPP&d-447263-n=1&d-447263-o=1&d-447263-p=1&conference=ALL&defensiveStatisticCategory=GAME_STATS&d-447263-s=TOTAL_POINTS_GAME_AVG). Matt Patricia's unit has done it all season, and I don't see 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) failing. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** Went bold 
[picking Jamie Collins as MVP](http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000465257/article/super-bowl-xlix-analyst-picks-seahawks-or-patriots-in-arizona) the last time the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) were in the 
[Super Bowl](http://www.nfl.com/superbowl). He got traded. So, bold prediction: 
[Nate Solder](/player/natesolder/2495232/profile) scores a touchdown. 

New England Patriots 38, Atlanta Falcons 27

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** It's possible that 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) and the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL)' offense score 30-plus points Sunday, but you better believe 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) and Pats' offense will match Atlanta's production. Both offenses are very good, but the biggest difference in this game is the defenses. New England's D played well all season long. And although the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL)' young unit has played well of late, it has too many holes to keep up with the Pats. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Malcolm Butler](/player/malcolmbutler/2550613/profile) wins it again with a last-second INT. 

Atlanta Falcons 34, New England Patriots 30

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** The 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) have one of the best offenses of all time. They'll get the recognition they deserve after this game. 
**MVP:** Julio Jones 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) and 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) set a 
[Super Bowl](http://www.nfl.com/superbowl) record for combined passing yards, but Ryan does just a little bit more. 

New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 21

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** New England had 
[the No. 1 scoring defense in the regular season](http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?tabSeq=2&season=2016&seasonType=REG&role=OPP&d-447263-n=1&d-447263-o=1&d-447263-p=1&conference=ALL&defensiveStatisticCategory=GAME_STATS&d-447263-s=TOTAL_POINTS_GAME_AVG) and held the 
[Texans](/teams/houstontexans/profile?team=HOU) and 
[Steelers](/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT) to under 20 points the last two games. I think the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will hold the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) far below their average. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Martellus Bennett](/player/martellusbennett/1062/profile) has more TDs than 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile). 

Atlanta Falcons 30, New England Patriots 26

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** I've changed my mind about a thousand times on this pick. But after watching tape today, it's Atlanta. This offense looks to be the difference. 
**MVP:** Vic Beasley 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Devonta Freeman](/player/devontafreeman/2543583/profile) and 
[Tevin Coleman](/player/tevincoleman/2552453/profile) will each have 100-plus scrimmage yards. 

Atlanta Falcons 34, New England Patriots 30

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** The 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE)' defense is good, but hasn't been truly tested in this run to the 
[Super Bowl](http://www.nfl.com/superbowl). The 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL)' offense will cement its status as an all-time unit with a diverse attack that is able to just edge out 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) in what goes down as a classic. 
**MVP:** Matt Ryan 
**Bold prediction:** Four different 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) players other than 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile) score touchdowns -- though Jones puts up a memorable performance with tough, chain-moving catches and over 100 yards. 

New England Patriots 35, Atlanta Falcons 31

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** The 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL)' defense has played well of late, as evidenced by 
[the near-complete shutdown of Aaron Rodgers](http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2017012200/2016/POST20/packers@falcons). But give the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) that additional week to prepare, and 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) and Co. will be able to exploit any weakness that exists. 
**MVP:** 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) 
**Bold prediction:** The 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL), driving late for the go-ahead score, actually try to run the ball from the 2-yard line. And are stuffed as the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) again win at the goal line. 

Atlanta Falcons 38, New England Patriots 35

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** Though 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) has mostly led the way for these 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL), Atlanta will be guided on Sunday by the two-headed monster in the backfield, 
[Devonta Freeman](/player/devontafreeman/2543583/profile) and 
[Tevin Coleman](/player/tevincoleman/2552453/profile). 
**MVP:** Vic Beasley 
**Bold prediction:** Beasley will have three sacks, with his third sack ending Brady's final drive. 

New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 28

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** This game means a lot to each organization, with 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) trying to become the only quarterback to win five rings and 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) trying to bring Atlanta its first Lombardi Trophy. NRG Stadium will be rockin', and experience will net New England its fifth title. 
**MVP:** Malcom Brown 
**Bold prediction:** I think my MVP pick was bold. But Brown will get three sacks. 

Atlanta Falcons 35, New England Patriots 30

**Why the [Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) will win:** 150 combined rushing yards between the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) two lead backs and, more importantly, 90 receiving yards between them, as well. While the 
[Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) are well-equipped to handle Atlanta's passing game, something has to give. 
**MVP:** Matt Ryan 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Julian Edelman](/player/julianedelman/238498/profile) has 10 catches for more than 200 receiving yards. Brady goes back to his old reliable in an effort to move the ball down the field on Dan Quinn's defense. 

New England Patriots 30, Atlanta Falcons 24

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** I want to say Atlanta will blow the doors off, but my gut (and history) says Brady wins. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** 
[Julio Jones](/player/juliojones/2495454/profile) has three TDs, but it's still not enough. 

New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 20

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** Unless Atlanta's running backs can dominate on the ground (which they won't), the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) won't be able to deter 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile)'s meeting with destiny. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** Lady Gaga stays fully clothed. 

New England Patriots 31, Atlanta Falcons 30

**Why the [Patriots](/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE) will win:** 
[Matt Ryan](/player/mattryan/310/profile) will move the ball, but a young 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) defense won't have enough to slow down 
[Tom Brady](/player/tombrady/2504211/profile) in the end. TB12 leads the game-winning drive to culminate a year worthy of being chronicled in books and movies. 
**MVP:** Tom Brady 
**Bold prediction:** Ryan will throw four touchdown passes, but a missed PAT by 
[Matt Bryant](/player/mattbryant/2504797/profile) early in the first half will come back to haunt the 
[Falcons](/teams/atlantafalcons/profile?team=ATL) in the end. 

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