Greatest Super Bowl of All-Time – My Faves
Tomorrow is Super Bowl LV. The day before the Super Bowl, I always get a little nostalgic. I like to re-watch the NFL Films season recaps and re-remember the seasons and games of the past.
Here are my picks for the Greatest Super Bowls of All-Time.
49ers Beat Bengals 20-16
SB XXIII #23 – 1/22/1989 – YouTube Link
This is the Super Bowl that started it all for me. I loved the NFL, but watching this game as an 8-year old is something I still vividly remember. It was the first game I remember taping via VCR the entire game, hopping up on every commercial break, then watching for days after.
It was the evil, mouthy, Sam Wyche-led Bengals against the “good guy” 49ers. This kid I hated named Justin McCain was rooting for the Bengals which made me root for the Joe Montana-led 49ers.
Montana connected with John Taylor for the game-winning TD with :34 seconds left.
Giants Beat Bills 20-19
SB XXV #25 – 1/27/1991 – YouTube Link
The closest Super Bowl in history. No one expected the Giants to beat the Bills. They limped in to the Super Bowl led by backup QB Jeff Hostetler, and buoyed in the running game by worn down, old Ottis Anderson.
They controlled the ball for nearly three quarters and kept the Bills offense, led by Thurman Thomas, off the field.
The Bills fought back and had a chance to win. But Scott Norwood’s kick sailed wide-right as time expired.
Colts Beat Cowboys 16-13
SB V #5 – 1/17/1971 – YouTube Link
This game gets pooped on by history. The so-called “Blunder Bowl,” I think it’s ridiculous to not take the game for what it is, and enjoy it.
OK, so there were 11 turnovers in the game. 5 in the fourth quarter. Imagine watching that in-person; a one-score game the entire time.
And, the Cowboys (aka the Foulboys) set a Super Bowl record with 10 penalties for 133 yards. With five seconds left, Colts rookie kick Jim O’Brien made a 32-yard FG to win the game.
Steelers Beat Cowboys 21-17
SB X #10 – 1/18/1976 – YouTube Link
The ultimate contrast of styles in the NFL’s biggest game. The flashy, self-appointed America’s Team Dallas Cowboys. Against the gritty “Steel Curtain” defense and pound it out style of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This was the first Super Bowl pairing teams that had each won a Super Bowl previously. These were also the two most popular teams in the NFL at the time.
The score was 10-7 Dallas heading into the fourth quarter. The Steelers rallied to score 14 unanswered points, including a 64-yard touchdown reception by Pittsburgh wide receiver Lynn Swann, the game’s MVP. Terry Bradshaw had a monster game.
The game ended when the Steelers intercepted a Roger Staubach pass in the endzone to seal the win. Franco Harris had the most rushing yards in the game.
Patriots Beat Panthers 32-29
SB XXXVIII #38 – 2/1/2004 – YouTube Link
The first half was scoreless after 26:55 had elapsed in the game and set the record for the longest amount of time a Super Bowl remained scoreless. The party I was at, people said it was “boring.” Personally, I loved it. My kind of game.
Then suddenly, the two teams combined for 24 points in just over 3 minutes. At halftime, the Pats led 14-10 and the “Wardrobe Malfunction” between Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake “took hold” and “captivated” a nation. It turned into a big play offensive battle with both offenses administering KO attempts via long scores.
The Patriots would ultimately win it on an Adam Vinatieri 41-yard FG as time expired.
This game is one of the most underrated games, not just Super Bowls, in NFL history.