The Super Bowl LI matchup is set with the Atlanta Falcons taking on the New England Patriots.
Many could have expected the Patriots to reach this point earlier in the season. Despite their obstacles, the Pats have become the most consistent franchise in the NFL, and they still have arguably the best quarterback of all time in Tom Brady.
The Atlanta Falcons were a bit more of a surprise based on preseason expectations, but they showcased great offense throughout the season and strong defense as of late to win the NFC title.
While the Super Bowl is always must-see television, this is especially a battle you don't want to miss.
Super Bowl LI
Date: Sunday, Feb. 5
Kickoff Time: 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT
Location: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas
Live Stream: NFL Mobile
The Falcons finished the year 11-5, but they still didn't seem to get the respect they deserved nationally.
While the offense led the NFL with 33.8 points per game, the defense ranked 27th in points allowed. Matt Ryan was best in the league with a 117.1 quarterback rating, but that seemed to be a fluke based on what we had seen the rest of his career.
After seeing this squad in the playoffs, however, no one can deny this group's talent.
Against the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers, Ryan threw for a combined 730 passing yards with seven touchdowns and zero interceptions. In his last six games, he has 18 touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Julio Jones clearly gets a lot of credit as the team's top receiver, but Ryan also found seven other receivers Sunday and has been spreading the ball around all season.
Bleacher Report's Matt Miller described the offense during the NFC Championship Game:
Matt Miller @nfldraftscout
This Falcons offense is football porn.2017-1-22 21:55:23
Meanwhile, the defense also continues to improve with strong performances against both the Packers and the Seahawks.
Fans are likely thrilled to watch their team reach the Super Bowl, but the team itself still has its sights on a higher goal.
"We've worked hard to get to this point," Ryan said after the game, per Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com. "But the challenge is still in front of us. What we set out to accomplish is still in front of us."
The problem is things will get much harder against the Patriots, which head into the next game with a 16-2 overall record.
Brady is 39 years old but is playing as well as ever, finishing the regular season with 28 touchdowns and just two interceptions after missing the first four games due to suspension. He wasn't perfect against the Houston Texans, but he bounced back with 384 passing yards and three touchdowns against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.
He is set to compete in his NFL-record seventh Super Bowl, with his four wins tied with Joe Montana for the most all time.
Kevin Van Valkenburg of ESPN provided his thoughts on Brady's skill set:
Kevin Van Valkenburg @KVanValkenburg
This I believe: The main reason "The Patriot Way" works so well is Brady is better at covering up holes/weaknesses than any QB in history.2017-1-23 02:32:38
With experience in high-pressure games and the ability to still compete at a high level, this is a quarterback who will not be easy to stop.
At the same time, the Patriots defense has almost been overlooked despite allowing an NFL-low 15.6 points per game during the season. Giving the coaching staff two weeks to prepare also could help slow down the red-hot Falcons offense.
There will be a lot of factors that decide a game like this, but when you have the best offense in the league against the best defense, you know it should at least be entertaining.