The New Orleans Saints beat the Miami Dolphins 20-0 in London today, effectively killing the idea of American exceptionalism for good. The drab, penalty-marred affair at Wembley Stadium caused irreversible damage to the Special Relationship, and America’s strongest ally has no choice now but to abandon her floundering former colony and avoid embarrassment by association.
The Saints led 3-0 going into halftime, and the only highlight of note was a wildcat play made remarkable by Dolphins quarterback and all-around malcontent Jay Cutler’s complete lack of effort:
Cutler really selling his role in the Wildcat at the bottom of the screen pic.twitter.com/WgHxXvxlHL— Mike Tunison (@xmasape) October 1, 2017
Like Michelangelo’s David, Cutler stood with hand on hip, though the quarterback carried less of a threat to run than his marble counterpart. The play resulted in negative yards for the Dolphins and would serve as a fitting representation for the game itself were it not for the fact that Cutler’s insolence in that moment made it somewhat entertaining.
The Dolphins finished with 186 total net yards. The Cutler-led offense managed to put together only one foray into the red zone, and they couldn’t muster a single field goal attempt all game. Their defense, meanwhile, was careful not to disturb New Orleans in the second half, and they coddled and cushioned Drew Brees as he slowly led his team into the end zone. While the Saints were certainly better than their opponents, they didn't exactly play “champagne football," as the British like to say.
Americans watching at home who had hoped to catch a glimpse of that shining city on a hill reassert itself on the international stage were instead treated to a game that featured 19 total penalties. It was a thoroughly unpatriotic display that has made the Statue of Liberty weep tears of red, white, and blue. One can only hope that no innocent American children were watching, lest they mimic the actions of these players on the high school football fields that dot America’s fruited plains.