Rodney Harrison talks about leaving Super Bowl LI early

NBC Universal

Midway through the third quarter of Super Bowl LI, the Atlanta Falcons extended their lead over the New England Patriots to a score of 28-3.

So many people thought it was over - the Falcons had won it, and the Patriots were going to lose this Super Bowl in blowout fashion.

But, wait.

No one was prepared for the historic, epic comeback that the New England Patriots were about to embark on. That even includes former Patriot and current NBC football studio analyst Rodney Harrison, who recently reflected on leaving Super Bowl LI early.

“I ended up leaving in the third quarter. I was getting harassed by Falcon fans, so it got to a point where it was so bad, I just left. I felt like we were going to lose and we were actually going to get blown out,” Harrison said. “I ended up going back to the hotel, sitting in the bar watching it along with probably 300 other fans, all rooting against the Patriots. The Patriots end up pulling it out, so I felt terrible for leaving, but at the same point, I was happy the Patriots won.”

Looking back on the championship game, Harrison was reminded of one of Bill Belichick’s major mottos: finishing.

“His theme has always been about finishing,” Harrison said. “The Falcons, that’s something they haven’t been able to do, whether it’s the Super Bowl or the last couple of weeks. That’s probably something [Dan Quinn will] be preaching to his team this week.”

And when the Super Bowl LI rematch happens this Sunday night, we can bet Harrison – and many other fans – won’t leave early this time.

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