New Orleans Saints fans poured onto the streets Sunday night to celebrate the Philadelphia Eagles 38-7 win over the Minnesota Vikings that clinched the Eagles’ spot in Super Bowl LII against the New England Patriots.
While Saints fans are still in agony over the team’s heart-breaking end to the season last week in Minnesota, fans partied with drinks in celebration of not having to view the team’s final play of the season, known as the “Williams whiff” in New Orleans, over and over on upcoming Super Bowl preview shows.
New Orleans led 24-23 with 10 seconds left in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs when Saints rookie safety Marcus Williams whiffed on a tackle of Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs, giving up a game-winning, 61-yard touchdown. The play broke the collective hearts of Saints fans and has since been a staple of SportsCenter and other sports outlets.
“I know our team didn’t make it to the Super Bowl, but the fact that I won’t be subjected to constant replays of that Vikings touchdown or relive that crushing moment every day over the next two weeks is a victory to me,” Metairie resident Jesse Mills said.
A memo obtained from NBC, which will air Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4, confirmed that the network planned to show the play dubbed the “Minneapolis Miracle” or the “Williams whiff” on repeat for the two weeks preceding the game.
“We need to show that play like TBS shows ‘A Christmas Story’ every year,” the memo reads.
Now that the Vikings have been eliminated and the pregame shows no longer have a need to showcase the play, a spokesperson for ESPN said the network will likely air the Falcons’ 4th-and-goal play against the Eagles, deemed “4th-and-futile”, in which Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan failed to connect with receiver Julio Jones in the end zone, knocking the Falcons out of the playoffs and the Eagles into their first Super Bowl since 2004.
“Other than seeing Matt Ryan cry or the New England Patriots being implicated in the assassination of JFK, this night can’t get any better,” Mills said upon hearing that news.