Super Bowl LI was an American football game played between the American Football Conference (AFC) champions New England Patriots and the National Football Conference (NFC) champions Atlanta Falcons, to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 2016 season. The Patriots defeated the Falcons, 34–28, in the first Super Bowl ever to go into overtime.
Super Bowl LI was played at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, on Sunday, February 5, 2017. It was the second Super Bowl to be held at NRG Stadium, the other being Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004, which also featured the New England Patriots against that season’s NFC South champion Carolina Panthers. It was also the third time the Super Bowl has been played in Houston, with Super Bowl VIII in 1974 having been held at Rice Stadium.
More than 30 team and individual Super Bowl records were either broken or matched in Super Bowl LI. The Patriots overcame a 25-point deficit to win (they trailed 28–3 with 2:07 left in the third quarter), breaking the record for the largest deficit overcome to win the Super Bowl (the previous record was ten points, which was set during Super Bowl XXII and later matched twice, including by the Patriots in Super Bowl XLIX).
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who completed 43 passes on 62 attempts for 466 yards, all single-game Super Bowl records, was named Super Bowl MVP for a record fourth time. James White’s 14 receptions and 20 points scored were also Super Bowl records. The Patriots’ victory was their fifth all-time, moving them into a three-way tie with the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers for second place on the all-time Super Bowl wins list, trailing only the Pittsburgh Steelers who have six Super Bowl victories.
Super Bowl LI was the Patriots’ record-setting ninth Super Bowl appearance, their second in three years, and their seventh under the leadership of head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady. The Falcons entered the game trying to win their first Super Bowl title, having lost their only previous appearance in Super Bowl XXXIII.