For most Patriots fans, re-living Super Bowl LI will never get old. Fortunately for them, NFL Films is set to release the official commemorative film recapping the season on March 7.
Much of what can be seen from the Super Bowl may already be familiar for some fanatics, but we’re guessing they won’t mind watching it again. Here are a few things that stick out from the season long recap.
■ I forgot just how close the Patriots came to losing to the Jets. No, really. I’m not talking about the 41-3 debacle on Christmas Eve at Gillette Stadium. This is about the squeaker one month earlier on Thanksgiving weekend, when the Patriots rallied to defeat the Jets, 22-17 at MetLife Stadium. The DVD shows the comeback, including the critical fourth-and-4 conversion at midfield on the Patriots’ go-ahead drive. The Jets sent pressure, but Tom Brady fired a quick pass to James White, who scampered and lunged for the first down to keep the drive alive.
■ White was the surprise hero of the Super Bowl, but he quietly had a very productive season, hauling in 60 passes for 551 yards and five touchdowns. His name is mentioned often in the film, with his two touchdown performance against the Bengals and his aforementioned catch against the Jets. He also had a nifty 61-yard reception against the Baltimore Ravens.
■ There’s no mention of Rob Gronkowski’s injury. One minute, Gronk is lighting up the Pittsburgh Steelers and Buffalo Bills. We also see his spectacular catch late in the game against the Seahawks, and the failed pass attempt on fourth down in that game. Then we don’t see Gronkowski again until the Super Bowl, when he’s cheering on the sideline as Brady scrambles for 15 yards. Along those lines, there’s no mention of Jamie Collins, or the trade that sent him to Cleveland in midseason and stunned Patriots fans.
■ Coach Bill Belichick was mic’d up for the Week 3 win over the Texans. The footage had been released earlier in the season, but it’s interesting to see how relaxed he appears before the game as he speaks with former Patriots nose tackle Vince Wilfork and defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, especially considering rookie third-string quarterback Jacoby Brissett was making the start.
“You trying to figure out who is going to play?” Belichick said to Crennel. “So are we. You might need a program for some of those numbers.”
■ Included in the special features are the Super Bowl postgame ceremonies, complete with the booing of Roger Goodell as he presented the Lombardi Trophy to Robert Kraft.
Also part of the special features is a segment called The Greats on Belichick in which former Celtics coach Doc Rivers, former Yankees manager Joe Torre, and Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski talk about where Bill Belichick ranks in the pantheon of great coaches.
“Bill Belichick stands alone as far as greatness,” said Torre.
Rivers seems to agree.
“I think he’s the greatest coach of all-time, in any sport,” said Rivers.
Other special features are an interview with Julian Edelman, a feature on Nate Ebner playing in the Olympics, and Tom Brady and his quest to keep playing.
Cinedigm and NFL films will release Super Bowl LI Champions: New England Patriots on Blu-Ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD on March 7.
Follow Andrew Mahoney on Twitter @GlobeMahoney