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The Fans Have Spoken. Their Super Bowl LI Picks.

POSTED February 05, 2017
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney


TORRINGTON: It’s that time again folks. Time for everybody to pitch in with their thoughts on who will win Super Bowl LI on Sunday when the Atlanta Falcons take on the New England Patriots.

This year, as in most, the responses were plenty, the opinions flowing and we appreciate everyone who responded to our request to be part of this forum.

Here they are. I’ll provide the scorecard at the end of this list.

Frankie Graziano 

Atlanta 31 New England 20

I think I've been wrong like every year on this so based on my prediction, New England will probably win. Good luck on the spread. Every sports book has this game as "New England, -3." With the exception of their win vs. Seattle in Super Bowl XLIX, the Patriots have won all their Super Bowls by three points. Oh, and if you're looking for a matchup to watch, look no further than Davonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman vs. the New England Patriots rush defense. Whoever wins that battle, wins the game.

Patrick Higgins

Ok here we go, I am going with the Falcons in this game because of the great offense that they have. There are so many weapons on this team especially when you open up the running game with the best running back duo in the NFL and then you have a great one two punch with Jones and Sanu, the Patriots aren't going to be able to stop both, and if the running game opens up, you can play action not just to Julio, you can use your running backs in the passing game too. Now the real factor is going to come down to two things, 1. If the Falcons can hit Brady and give him the happy feet he has when he gets hit and soars his passes, the Falcons will win because that is what the Giants did and that won two games against them. 2. Like I said the Patriots defense isn't going to keep this offense out of the end-zone, so if they can come up with stops in key situations and keep Jones under 100 yards they will win.

Glenn Carbone

Falcons 34-27. I think their defense is going to be in Brady's face all day. Pats have no run game to stop the pass rush. Not that they don't have a run game just not good enough.

Dean Tsopanides

Falcons 31 Patriots 21. Falcons have an explosive offense and a defense capable enough of putting pressure on Brady, ala Giants 08', and containing the Patriots offense enough to outscore them. Plus, I hate the Patriots and all that cheating isn’t any good for their karma:)

Gaitan Rodriguez

Pats 24-17. Patriots offensively are very balanced and will take advantage of what the defense gives them. Defensively they are tough and don't make mistakes and lastly with special teams the Patriots are always solid there. This is a very good Falcons team but I will take the experience of Patriots on this one.

Joe Perruse

I'm going with Atlanta 38-35. The only reason I'm taking Atlanta is because the guy I bet with every year has New England and it was his turn to pick. I do hope it is a high scoring close game.

Rich "Rusty" Elliot

My heart is with the Falcons. I would like to see Matt Ryan get a ring to cap off the most prolific season of his career. Yet, the realist in me says that the Patriots will win a 5th Super Bowl. There has been too much talk about how explosive the Falcons offense is, the fact that Ryan has thrown a TD to an NFL record 13 different players; the plethora of weapons they possess etc., etc. Bill Belichick had two weeks to prepare for this offense and he will have a scheme in place to contain the Falcons. And with Tom Brady under center in this spot, you simply cannot bet against the Patriots. He will make plenty of plays and the Patriots will win 34-21.

Casey Cochran

I think it's going to be a great/classic game. Not too high scoring but exciting. Both teams should be in it going in to the 4th quarter. Look out for Dwight Freeney (37-Year Old Bloomfield native) for the Falcons

Ed Gadomski

Patriots 38 Falcons 31. Falcons defensive front is a bit undersized and will allow LeGarrette Blount to control the clock in the second half and earn a Patriots victory.

Michelle Cook

I believe a great defense beats a good defense. When you put two teams on a field in what football fans refer to as the most important game of the year, anything can happen. These are two great teams and I believe we see a score 27-21. As much as my daughter would be all about the Patriots, I personally wish for a great game, and safety of all athletes.

Pete Paguaga

Falcons 35 Patriots 31. Too many offensive weapons for Atlanta.

Ken Davis

My prediction is that the Kansas City Chiefs will win the Super Bowl again - sometime. Not this Sunday. I remember when the Chiefs went to the first Super Bowl, I remember winning Super Bowl IV That's how old I am, but they've fallen short again. Couldn't beat the Steelers. Even if they had, they would've lost to the Patriots. That's just the way it is these days. I'm not fond of the Patriots But they know how to win, don't they? I'd love to see the Falcons win, but it's not going to happen. Here's my fantasy: Patriots win, Brady retires right after game and then Belichick follows. What a great sequence that would be. So many of us would be thrilled. It would make it worthwhile to endure one more championship. Patriots 39, Falcons 21. It's all about Brady, right?

Dennis Fowler

Pats 31 Falcons 27 ... Matt Ryan has been the MVP, but that's only because Tom Brady was wrongfully suspended for the first four games of the season. If he had played, New England would have been 15-1 and Brady would have thrown 40 TDs. Edelman scores late in the 4th quarter again and Pats win second Super Bowl in three years. Brady and Coach Belichick end the GOAT debate forever.

Conor Bierfeldt

25-22 Pats. Weird score cause it's the Super Bowl. The GOAT TB12 leads yet another game winning drive in the super bowl to win it.

Christine Gamari

Patriots- 28-13...... not an informed choice whatsoever. I have to give the support to the semi-local team. Going to Holy Cross in Worcester taught me how fanatic Massachusetts fans are about their professional sports teams, so I'm trying to help them out a little bit with some support. You don't want to see them when they lose..... it's a sad day.

Gabriella Levine

Ah, Patriots

Young Falcons team, young defense, field day for Brady.

Michael Criss

 Pats 41-27.

Michael Fritch Jr.

Patriots 31-21 Tom’s missing a ring to complete the set!

Gary Robinson

Hard to root against Brady and the Pats but I enjoy taking the underdog so I will take the Falcons. Plus, I am a Packers fan so it would be nice to say GB lost to the Super Bowl Champs

Michelle Jamieson

I say the Patriots by 14. I think they are a dominant team in every aspect of the game.

Rich Scott

Atlanta wins the Super Bowl, 27 – 20.

Bob Joyce

31-28 Patriots... comes down to late 4th quarter.

Bobby Chatfield

30-27 Falcons. I think they have a very similar recipe on defense as the Giants did when the beat the Patriots.

Kevin Roberts

Falcons 31, Patriots 27: The quarterbacks both go off for big games, but Matt Ryan gets the ball late and leads the Falcons to victory.

Dale Jones

Patriots by 4 points. They'll win by only 4 because all their Super Bowl wins have been narrow. They will shut down the Atlanta secondary and that will be the key.

Johnnie Jasinski

Patriots by 7-10 Brady, offense.

Cheryl Arroyo

The Falcons 35-30.

John Pierson

It's hard to pick against an angry, focused Tom Brady. I like the Patriots, 31-27, with another late game stop to seal it!

Tara Curry

I think the score (with the help of my son) will be 31-28 Falcons....I hope! If you ask my son he will tell you I don't know anything about football, which is true!

Ali Bronson

Patriots 24-21. They may have won four, but they have all been close games. I wouldn't be surprised to see an upset, but stop short of picking it because of experience with Brady and Belichick.

Roberto Medic

38-17 Pats. Brady with 4 TDs and MVP. Ryan with 2 picks.

Aaron Lefkowski

Patriots 31 Falcons 27. Can't pick against Brady and Belichick. They are immortals.

Marshall Miles

Pats 37 Falcons 33...Why? Freaking Belichick!!!

Chris Lovallo

My Super Bowl prediction is: New England 34 Atlanta 32 I think New England just has the edge in experience in the big game. Should be high scoring, and if the Pats defense can slow down Julio Jones and Mohammed Sanu they should win. Looking for a great game.

Vinnie Decker

37 -33 Falcons. Atlanta will come out fast. The Pats will miss Gronk

Jason Bresson

Falcons 34. Pats 31. Two amazing QB’s. Even though the Pats have the big game experience. Falcons are super-hot right now. I'm giving them the edge. I see very few mistakes happening in this game. A total shoot out until the end.

Mario Longobucco

I'll take the Pats.32-24. I think the Falcons are awesome and have a lot of weapons but they don't have Brady and Belichick and all the big game experience they bring. But, if Julio Jones scores twice, all bets are off and the Falcons win.

Kelly Finlay

Patriots. 27-23. Both teams are very good, and can score offensively. Possibly an even higher score than that! I'm a Patriots fan, so I am of course choosing them! Hopefully Hogan has another big game!

Chris McKenna

21 - 10 New England. Brady 4-0 against Atlanta and NE has to prove they can get past Deflategate and Spygate and win with no added drama.

John Holt

As a died in the wool New Englander I'd normally be all for a former Boston College QB winning the Super Bowl. Tough not to root for and believe in Matt Ryan. I just think there's too much motivation for Brady - Deflategate, surpassing Montana, his mom being sick. Patriots offense won't be stopped by Atlanta Defense. New England wins 38-27.

Gary Franklin

Patriots 38-27. Because...well...they are the Patriots.

Tim Fontenau

Patriots 35, Falcons 31. This will be a great offensive duel between two great quarterbacks with stellar casts around them. If they played 10 times, I'd predict a 5-5 split, maybe even a 6-4 edge for the Falcons. But this is the Super Bowl. This is the game Tom Brady and Bill Belichick have built their legacies on. Brady has been a man possessed since coming back from his four-game suspension. And while the defense hasn't been anything spectacular for the Patriots this year, they deliver when called upon. Matt Ryan is exceptional, the rightful MVP this season. His time is coming. But it's hard to imagine the Patriots not finding a way, as they always do when they're not playing the Giants. Regardless, this Super Bowl will be one for the ages. 

Patrick Tiscia

The way Roger Goodell handled DeflateGate and its ensuing madness was disgraceful. The way the Patriots have cheated over and over and over again over the last 16 years has been disgraceful. No two parties deserve each other more than these two. And they'll get that special time together on the podium Sunday night. Patriots 41, Falcons 13

Curtis Anthony

As a Giants fan, I hate to say it but I'm going with Patriots 34, Falcons 31. Brady wants revenge on the NFL for his suspension and I wouldn't want to play a pissed off Tom Brady.

 Rick Dubois

First off-if you give Coach Belichick two weeks to prepare for ANY team, he's going to do a better job than anyone else at using that extra time to his advantage. I think this game is going to go right down to the end, but I feel pretty good about a Patriots win. At the end of the day, the Patriots have so many players who have played in the big games, I think that's going to make the difference. The Falcons are a great team and I expect them to play well. Their awesome group of receivers can't be stopped for an entire game, but the Pats will have figured out a game plan to minimize the damage they can do. I see a barn burner with the final score being something like 27-23 Pats.

Matt Zampini

Patriots. Brady and company have made it their mission all year long to run through everyone else in the NFL and send a message to Roger Goodell. And I think that their offense can match Atlanta's and they will edge them out in the end, 34-30.

Richard Zalusky

Patriots. Brady and company have made it their mission all year long to run through everyone else in the NFL and send a message to Roger Goodell. And I think that their offense can match Atlanta's and they will edge them out in the end, 34-30.

Rich Romanchick

Falcons over Pats 37-28 because they are a younger and a better over-all team. It’s their time to shine.

Barry Soucy

Pats 35-24

Carissa Carbone

I predict the Patriots will win, and the score to be close at like 28-20. The Patriots have more experience in the situation and they played a great game against the Steelers.

Connor Finn

The Patriots! I've always loved the patriots but Tom Brady is Tom Brady, he's the smartest player ever and has the best coach ever over on his sidelines. Also, the defense will bend but not break, which is crucial in a game against the Falcons offense. 27-17.

Mike Kabelka

NE because they are deep, however, the Falcons QB can go pass for pass with Brady. 20-17 NE

Mike Conway

Atlanta wins 31-21. I like Atlanta and the under. If Atlanta can't keep the Patriots under 24 points, then I think New England will win.

Christopher Bunel

Who: Falcons over the Pats Score: 34-28 Why: I can't fathom having to listen to all of my Patriot loving friends pontificate about their dynastic reign.

Nick Spino

My opinion is 31-24 Patriots. two high scoring offenses and the Falcons play a zone defense, which Tom Brady is known to pick apart. I believe the Patriots have a slight advantage on defense which will give them the decisive win.

Edward Lopes

I think the Patriots will win the game 38-28, being in the South and not being a huge Patriot fan I'll be pulling for the Falcons!! But.. I really am looking for that awkward moment when Roger Goodall has to hand the trophy to Kraft and MVP to Brady!!

Stan Ozga

New England will come out on top. It will be close game with a lot of great defense, but Brady and company with do it again.

Owen Spino

Patriots, 24-20, Pats because of experience, coaching, and having the greatest QB of all time. Only reason it's close is because Falcons have playmakers on offense who will get theirs.

Joe Palladino

Pats - 28-17: Let's see, the best defense, a solid offense, and the G.O.A.T. - this one is locked in.

Scott Langenheim

I want Atlanta because am tired of the Pats. If Atlanta can bring pressure and beat Brady up a little bit they're going to have a chance if they sit back Brady will pick them apart and it's going to be a very short Super Bowl for Atlanta. My prediction; Atlanta 31 New England 28

Chris Saunders

Going to be a very high scoring game. Pats defense has never seen an offense like the Falcons and on the same page Falcons who are very fast and young are facing a veteran QB in Brady. I do like chances of Falcons pass rush getting to Brady and putting little pressure on him and as long as they don't miss tackles like Steelers where. Pats can be controlled somewhat. big thing will be who controls clock and whoever blinks first and commits least number of mistakes and the Falcons don't get shocked by surroundings. That being said, I have the Falcons winning, 35-31. 

Robbie Albreada

As much as I dislike the Patriots, I have to pick them over the Falcons given their experience in the Super Bowl and Tom Brady. Score - 28 - 24 in favor of the Pats.

Paul McLaughlin

New England 35-27. Pats still on a mission. Belichick and Brady have had two weeks to prepare, hard to beat.

Kevin Poniatoski

As much as I would love to see Matty Ice and Julio do what my boy Eli has done to Brady twice, I can't bet against the Pats. Experience seems to always rule. Plus, I would love to see Goodell hand Brady and Belichick that trophy.

Chris DeBerry

I would have to go 31 - 27 Patriots

The Patriots have the number one scoring defense in the NFL which is a good indicator of a Super Bowl Champion. It also helps to have one of the best Quarterbacks of all time. Not to mention the Falcons are young and their first trip to the Super Bowl in a while.

Edwin Ben

I'll say New England Patriots. 34-28. I have to be loyal to my area of the country. Go New England!

Ian Buthune

Patriots, 31-27, Why? Tom Brady is on a mission stick it to Goddell.

Joe Friscia

Julio Jones is unstoppable. With that being said, I'll go with the Falcons winning, 31-28.

Tina Louise

Pats. 24 to 17 because the Super Bowl is harder to score in usually and the Pats always take the lead!!

Gerry deSimas

Atlanta 31, New England 28. The Falcons defense is too quick and harass Tom Brady just enough to pick up their first Super Bowl championship

Ben McKenna

Patriots 28-21... As a Steelers fan, I hate saying it but Tom Brady and the New England Offense is just too much to handle for the Atlanta Falcons. Tom Brady is arguably the best QB ever and he makes plays that most people can make. So as much as I hate saying it, Tom Brady will get his 5th ring!

Desmond Williams

Pats by 10! They have the best QB ever!!

Kat Zagrodnik

New England Patriots 34-24 Plain and simple. They are the greatest team in the NFL.

Me?

Don’t care, still waiting for the Jets to get in….

Final score here.

Patriots: 49 picks

Falcons: 20 picks

I think I actually like that score and prediction.

Thanks to all who participated!

For more from Timothy W. Gaffney click here