By Ethan Sacks / January 22, 2019

Patriots-Rams Super Bowl Is Rematch of One That Started Brady Legend

Teams first clashed for 2002 title — the first of New England QB's nine Super Bowl appearances.

Patriots' Tom Brady throws a touchdown pass in the second quarter. New England Patriots face the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, LA on Feb. 3, 2002. (Photo by Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Patriots' Tom Brady throws a touchdown pass in the second quarter. New England Patriots face the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, LA on Feb. 3, 2002. (Photo by Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

A lot has changed in the National Football League over the last 17 years.

But the winning legacy of New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady is one thing that hasn’t — ever since the then-young QB took over for an injured Drew Bledsoe during the second game of the 2001 season and then led the Pats to an 11-3 record in 14 starts before the franchise’s first title run.

Their opponent in that memorable 2002 Super Bowl? The same Rams that they will face 17 years later for this year’s title match-up.

But it was a very different Rams team: A heavily-favored offensive juggernaut that boasted “The Greatest Show on Turf” courtesy of QB Kurt Warner, running back Marshall Faulk, and wide receivers Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt.

Brady and Belichick went on to lead the Patriots to the greatest dynasty in football history.

“On Feb. 3 in Atlanta, the Patriots will try once again for ring No. 6. And they’ll do it against the team that started the run in the first place: the Rams,” writes CBS Sports. “They’ve moved from St. Louis to Los Angeles and not a single player or coach is left in the organization from the first time around, but it feels perfect to have Brady and Belichick still at the top of their respective games and taking on the same team that sent them on this ride in the first place. “

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