BOSTON (CBS) — Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are champions of the football world.
The Buccaneers took a 21-6 lead over the Chiefs before halftime, en route to a 31-9 victory on Sunday night in Super Bowl LV.READ MORE: 'A Game Changer': CDC Recommends Johnson & Johnson's 1-Dose COVID Vaccine, Paving Way For Distribution To Begin
For Brady, this marks the seventh championship of his legendary career. He won his first Super Bowl in his first year as a starter, way back in 2001. He won again in 2003 and 2004, before going on a decade-long championship hiatus. He won in 2014, 2016, and 2018. Now 19 years after that first title, and in his first season after leaving the Patriots following a 20-year career in New England, Brady has No. 7.
Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs were seeking to become the NFL’s first repeat champs since those Patriots in ’03 and ’04, but bad defense, bad penalties, and bad execution had them trailing by 19 points in the middle of the third quarter. It never got any closer than that.
The Chiefs actually opened the scoring in the first quarter with a 49-yard Harrison Butker field goal. But in the final minute of the first quarter, Brady hit Rob Gronkowski for an 8-yard catch-and-run to give Tampa a 7-3 lead — a lead which the Bucs would never relinquish.READ MORE: Irv Cross, Former Eagles Star DB And Pioneer Black Analyst, Dies At 81
Brady connected with Gronkowski for another touchdown midway through the second quarter, a 17-yard connection to give Tampa a 14-3 lead. And just before halftime, Brady connected with Antonio Brown for a 1-yard score to make it 21-6 at halftime.
The Chiefs kicked a field goal to cut the lead to 12 points to start the second half, but the Bucs embarked on a 74-yard touchdown drive, capped off by a 27-yard touchdown run by Leonard Fournette.
The Bucs had one final chance to score in the final minutes, but Mahomes’ pass in the red zone to Travis Kelce deflected into the air and was picked off by Devin White.
Brady finished the game 21-for-29 for 201 yards with three touchdowns and no interecptions, as the quarterback didn’t have to do much in the second half to earn his seventh Super Bowl victory. Fournette had 89 rushing yards and a touchdown.MORE NEWS: COVID In Philadelphia: City Easing More Restrictions Monday On Road To Recovery
The championship was the second in Tampa Bay franchise history and their first since 2002. The Bucs had won zero playoff games from 2003-19, prior to Brady’s arrival last spring.