Sunday 20th January 2019

Event of the Day: New Orleans Saints versus Los Angeles Rams

Our event of the day is the NFC Championship game between the New Orleans Saints and the Los Angeles Rams at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Competing for a place in the Super Bowl, these two 13-3 sides meet for the second time this year. It’s a battle between veteran and future star in the quarterback duel as Drew Brees matches up with Jared Goff. Be sure you do not miss this highly-anticipated game. The Superdome is one of the last bastions of the NFL’s old guard. On its artificial surface, grizzled veterans wait patiently for the latest challenge from the next generation of new talent. 40-year-old Drew Brees will look to lead his team to the franchise’s second Super Bowl appearance. He threw for 3992 yards and 32 touchdowns this season, completing 74.4% of his passes. However, age is perhaps starting to catch up with the Texas-born signal-caller, he opened last week’s game against the Eagles with an interception and did not have his best game. Despite this, Brees is the comeback king and has led his Saints to victory after falling behind in six matches this season. Case in point, Brees rallied his team and lead them to 20 unanswered points to overcome a 14-0 deficit against the Eagles.

The challenge this week comes from the west as the Los Angeles Rams come to New Orleans. 24-year old Jared Goff has worked his California magic on the Rams in his two-and-a-half seasons as signal-caller. In three seasons as the quarterback for the University of California Golden Bears, Goff took the team from 1-11 to 5-7 to 7-5. After being drafted first overall in 2016, he took the Rams from 4-12 that season to 11-5 in 2017 to 13-3 this season. He threw for 4688 yards this season, good for fourth best in the league. Beyond Goff and his golden arm, the Rams have the young, explosive Todd Gurley. 1251 rushing yards, 17 rushing touchdowns, 89.4 yards per game and six 100 rushing yard games makes Gurley one of the elite players at his position. After Gurley dominates your defence, it’s time for defensive tackle Aaron Donald to dominate your offense. Donald leads the league this season in tackles for loss (25) and sacks (20.5), making him the ultimate nightmare for every quarterback. No offensive line seems able to stop him and an offense must be at the top of its game to overcome him. The last time the Rams went 13-3 was in 1999 and they went on to win the Super Bowl. However, Brees and his veteran Saints will look to halt the upstart Rams in their tracks. This is sure to be a match that will go down in history and one that you aren’t going to want to miss.

Honourable mentions around the globe also go to the NFL, where the Kansas City Chiefs host the New England Patriots at Arrowhead Stadium for the AFC Championship Game. Another clash of the old guard against an upstart challenger, 23-year-old phenom Patrick Mahomes will attempt to usurp 41-year-old, five time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady. Brady is considered one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history of the NFL. However, Mahomes has had an excellent season, becoming the third player to throw fifty touchdowns in a single season and has established himself as the next star of the NFL. Despite a historic season by the Chiefs, the Patriots are never an easy team to play, especially in the postseason. Expect a thrilling match in Kansas City tonight. Elsewhere, Thailand and China face off in the round of 16 at the AFC Asian Cup. The Desert Classic Golf continues at the PGA West Golf Course. In the NHL, the New York Islanders host the Anaheim Ducks at the Barclays Center. The Dafabet Masters continues at Alexandra Palace. The Australian Open continues at Melbourne Park.

Whatever you’re watching, enjoy!

Fixture

Photos by LA Rams; NFL

 

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