HOUSTON (Reuters) - New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was named the Most Valuable Player of the Super Bowl on Sunday after leading his team on a record comeback over the Atlanta Falcons in the National Football League championship game.
Brady, a five-times Super Bowl winner and four-times MVP of the championship game, completed 43 of 62 passes for 466 yards, two touchdowns and one interception in the 34-28 overtime victory, the first Super Bowl decided in extra time.
The 39-year-old Brady set Super Bowl records for completions and yards gained passing as he directed the Patriots on a monumental comeback from a 28-3 third-quarter hole -- the largest deficit ever overcome in a Super Bowl.
“We all brought each other back. We never felt out of it. It was a tough battle,” Brady said on the field after James White plunged past the goal line for the winning touchdown.
”They (Atlanta) have a great team, I give them a lot of credit. We just made a few more plays than them.”
Asked whether his fifth Super Bowl title was the best, Brady replied: “They’re all great. This team resembled a lot of teams from the past that had a lot of mental toughness, great defense. Everyone rose to the occasion in the second half and overtime.”
Brady, who was suspended for the first four games of the regular season over his role in the AFC title game controversy over under-inflated balls two seasons ago despite fighting the punishment in court, was asked if this was redemption.
“This is all positive, man. This is unbelievable.”
Brady was surrounded by his wife, super model Gisele Bundchen, their kids and his father and mother, who has been battling illness the last 18 months.
“They’re all happy,” Brady said about having his family with him. “It’s nice to have everybody here. It’s going to be a great celebration tonight.”
Brady then shouted out to the Patriots fans as he brandished the Lombardi Trophy: “Thank you to all our fans. Everyone back in Boston, New England, we love you. You’ve been with us all year. We’re bringing this sucker home!”
Additional reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Andrew Both