By Matthew Cunha,
The dreaded two-week layoff between the league championship games and the Super Bowl is almost over. Here are the top storylines to keep an eye on just days before the big game.
The injury status of Rob Gronkowski – Gronk is on the record saying that he will be ready to go on Sunday. He has been present at practices this week but still needs to pass the league’s concussion protocol before Sunday’s game.
The Eagles’d-line vs the Pats’ o-line – Without Carson Wentz, the strength of the Eagles moves over to the defensive side. Vinny Curry, Fletcher Cox, Brandon Graham and Chris Long can bring pressure up the middle on Tom Brady. If the Eagles win the Super Bowl, this is the area that will be the Patriots demise. Historically, up the middle has been the way to get to Brady
Old friend LeGarrette Blount – Something I don’t think is getting enough attention is that LeGarrette Blount is on the Eagles. Last year, he ran for 18 TD’s and over 1000 yards for the Patriots. This season with the Eagles, he managed less than 800 yards and two TD’s in a talented group of running backs. Blount loved the Patriots and will look to seek revenge on the squad who let him go and may add some hints for the Eagles against an unfamiliar opponent.
Stephon Gilmore vs. Alshon Jeffrey – Gilmore was paid top-dollar this offseason by coach Bill Belichick. In the beginning of the season, with the team 2-2, many already considered him a bust. Gilmore rebounded for a decent rest of the campaign but fans did not take notice until Gilmore’s diving pass deflection to seal the AFC title. He will be matched up vs. the Eagles talented offseason acquisition, Alshon Jeffery. Jeffrey went for 85 yards and two scores vs the Vikings. Both of these guys will want to prove they were worth the price tag and should see a lot of each other one on one.
TB12’s Blitz for 6 – Tom Brady is the greatest to ever throw the pigskin. The 6th Super Bowl for Brady would end all doubt. Especially if the quarterback is as heroic as he was in previous Super Bowls.
Matthew Cunha is a producer of The Drive, weekdays 4pm to 6pm on 92.9fm The Ticket and streaming live at DriveShowMaine.com. Follow us on Twitter, @DriveShowMaine and “Like Us” on Facebook, Drive Show Maine.