Football is a game of inches, which is how close defensive end Chris Long came to being one of the New England Patriots’ Super Bowl LI heroes.
Long was a fraction of a second away from hitting Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan from the blind side as Dont’a Hightower reached him that much faster from the defensive left, jarring the ball loose.
Hightower was explaining the strip sack, which helped lead the Patriots to their historic 34-28 comeback win, on the sideline when Long cut him off. NBC Sports Network’s “Turning Point” captured the moment.
“You son of a (expletive),” Long said. “I thought I had it.”
“Were you there?” Hightower asked.
“Yeah, me and you,” Long said.
Thumbnail photo via John David Mercer/USA TODAY Sports Images