Super Bowl XLVI: Why Everyone in Patriots Nation Should Thank Sterling Moore

Kevin JoyceContributor IJanuary 22, 2012

Patriots' fans are thanking Belichick that he found Sterling Moore
Patriots' fans are thanking Belichick that he found Sterling MooreRob Carr/Getty Images

You all know the feeling.

That sinking feeling in your stomach, that one that feels like the dreadfully inevitable has reared its ugly face, and that the Patriots will be sitting at home once again watching the Super Bowl.

The defense had provided the Patriots' offense with two key stops, allowing them ample opportunity to put the game out of hand. And yet, the Ravens hung in there, with Flacco driving the Ravens' down deep into Patriots' territory.

Second-and-one. Ball at the Patriots' 14-yard-line. 27 seconds left in the AFC Championship Game with the Patriots desperately holding on to a 23-20 lead. Can't you just feel it coming?

The Ravens were on a roll. They were at least going to tie it. At LEAST. All Patriots fans were praying for was a stop for a potential overtime win.

Flacco gets the snap; he has all the time he needs in the pocket. He unloads the ball towards the right back corner of the end zone, and as he does so, every Patriots fan's heart jumps into his/her throat.

Lee Evans makes the catch. Game over. For a split second...for one half of a second... it's all over. The Patriots have stabbed a knife into the hearts of their fans and twisted it.

Then a hand flies into the fray...a glorious hand that through pure will rips the ball away...a hand belonging to one Sterling Moore.

A man who went undrafted and as recently as Dec. 23 was on the Patriots' practice squad, a man no one expected to save the Patriots' season and send them to their seventh Super Bowl in franchise history.

The ball falls harmlessly to the ground. Everyone knows what happened next. Billy Cundiff misses the kick, and the entire region of New England flung their arms up and started doing cartwheels in their living rooms.

All thanks to one undrafted player who made the play of the year so far.