The Super Bowl By The Numbers

Super Bowl XLVII is Sunday.  I did this last year and am updating again with some more facts from this year’s game:

  • CBS will broadcast their 18th Super Bowl this Sunday.  That is more than any other network.  NBC is in 2nd place with 17 Super Bowl broadcasts.
  • Today will be Super Bowl #8 at the Superdome

    Today will be Super Bowl #8 at the Superdome

    This year’s Super Bowl will be the 8th at the Louisiana Superdome.  The city of New Orleans has now hosted 11 Super Bowls, pulling one ahead of the city of Miami for the most all-time.  Miami has hosted 5 at the Orange Bowl and 5 at Sun Life Stadium.  New Orleans hosted 3 at Tulane Stadium in addition to the 8 at the Superdome.

  • Pat Summerall has announced the most Super Bowls with 11.  Al Michaels and Dick Enberg are tied for 2nd all-time 2nd all-time when he announces his 8th Super Bowl.  John Madden has the most appearances as colour-man with 11 games.
  • Sunday’s game will be the 3rd Super Bowl that Jim Nantz and Phil Simms have called together.  This will be Simms’ 5th Super Bowl broadcast having previously called 2 with Greg Gumbel.
  • Jack Buck announced 16 Super Bowls on the radio, most all-time.
  • The Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers each have 8 Super Bowl appearances, tied for the most all-time.
  • The Steelers has 6 Super Bowl victories, which is the most all-time.  The 49ers look to match them this year.
  • There have been 6 re-matches in Super Bowl history.  The Cowboys and the Steelers are the only two teams to play each other in the Super Bowl 3 times.
  • Former Cowboy and 49er Charles Haley 5 Super Bowl rings - more than any other player

    Former Cowboy and 49er Charles Haley 5 Super Bowl rings – more than any other player

    Defensive End Charles Haley has the most Super Bowl victories with 5.  He won 2 with the San Fransisco 49ers and 3 with the Dallas Cowboys

  • One player has played in 6 Super Bowls.  Defensive lineman Mike Lodish played in 4 with the Buffalo Bills and 2 with the Denver Broncos.  Wide receiver Don Beebe played in 4 with the Buffalo Bills and 1 with the Green Bay Packers but was on injured reserve in 1997 when the Packers went to their 2nd straight Super Bowl.
  • The longest pass play in Super Bowl history was a 85 yard touchdown pass from Carolina Panthers QB Jake Delhomme to WR Muhsin Muhammad in Super Bowl XXXVIII.  The longest running play was a 75 yard touchdown run by Pittsburgh Steelers running back Willie Parker in Super Bowl XL.
  • The longest interception return was a 100 yard TD return by Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison in Super Bowl XLIII.  That was also the longest play in Super Bowl history.  The longest fumble return in Super Bowl history was Dallas Cowboys’ defensive tackle Leon Lett’s infamous 64 yard fumble return in Super Bowl XXVII.  Lett fumbled the ball back to the Bills right before he reached the end zone when wide receiver Don Beebe came from behind to knock the ball loose.
  • The longest field goal in Super Bowl history is a 54 yard field goal from Buffalo Bills kicker Steve Christie in Super Bowl XXVIII.  The longest punt in Super Bowl history was a 63 yarder by Cincinnati Bengals punter Lee Johnson in Super Bowl XXIII.
  • The longest kickoff return in Super Bowl history was a 99 yard TD return by Green Bay Packers receiver Desmond Howard in Super Bowl XXXI.  The longest punt return in Super Bowl history was a 45 yard return by San Fransisco 49ers receiver John Taylor in Super Bowl XXIII.  No punt has ever been returned for a TD in the Super Bowl.
  • The highest scoring Super Bowl of all-time was Super Bowl XXIX in which the San Fransisco 49ers defeated the San Diego Chargers by a score of 49-26.  There were 75 total points scored in the game.
  • MIA K Garo Yepremian's botch lead to the Redskins' only TD in the 1972 game

    MIA K Garo Yepremian’s botch lead to the Redskins’ only TD in the 1972 game

    The lowest scoring Super Bowl in history was Super Bowl VII in which the Miami Dolphins defeated the Washington Redskins by a score of 14-7.  21 total points were scored in that one.

  • The largest margin of victory in Super Bowl history was Super Bowl XXIV in which the San Fransisco 49ers defeated the Denver Broncos by a score of 55-10.
  • The smallest margin of victory in Super Bowl history was Super Bowl XXV in which the New York Giants defeated the Buffalo Bills by a score of 20-19.
  • Don Shula has coached the most games in Super Bowl history with 6.  He coached 1 for the Baltimore Colts and 5 for the Miami Dolphins.  Chuck Noll has won the most Super Bowls as a head coach, winning 4 with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
  • The oldest coach ever to win a Super Bowl was St. Louis Rams head coach Dick Vermeil in Super Bowl XXXIV.  He was 63 years and 92 days old when he won that game.  The youngest coach ever to win a Super Bowl was Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin in Super Bowl XLIII.  He was 36 years and 341 days when he won it.
  • No head coach has ever won a Super Bowl with two different teams.
  • Obviously this year’s game will be the first time that the two head coaches in the Super Bowl – Jim Harbaugh of the San Fransisco 49ers and John Harbaugh of the Baltimore Ravens – are brothers
  • The Super Bowl has never gone into overtime.
  • The 49ers are 5-0 all-time in the Super Bowl.  They are looking for their 6th Super Bowl win which would tie them for the most all-time.  The Steelers are 6-2 in the Super Bowl all-time.
  • The Ravens are 1-0 in the Super Bowl.  Their only appearance came back after the 2000 season when they defeated the New York Giants 34-7.  Ray Lewis was the MVP of that Super Bowl.
  • Joe Montana has won Super Bowl MVP 3 times, more than anyone in Super Bowl history.  Colin Kaepernick will try to join Montana and Steve Young as a Super Bowl MVP starting quarterback for the 49ers.  In all but one of the 5 previous Super Bowl wins for the 49ers has the starting quarterback won the game’s MVP.

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Best Super Bowls of all-time – #7 – Super Bowl XXIII – San Fransisco 49ers vrs. Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Montana and the San Fransisco 49ers had been one of the top teams in the NFC since they beat the Miami Dolphins 4 years prior in the Super Bowl however they had not been back to the big game since.  Boomer Esiason and the Cincinnati Bengals were a talented team who were becoming the class of the AFC.  Esiason was the league MVP however the NFC was known to have been the dominant conference back in that time and Montana and the Niners were heavy favorites in the game.

Super Bowl XXIII – San Fransisco 49ers vrs. Cincinnati Bengals – January 22, 1989, broadcast on NBC, announced by Dick Enberg and Merlin Olsen

Jerry Rice made his acrobatic one-handed catch in the 1st half

The game started off auspiciously for both teams.  49ers starting offensive tackle Steve Wallace broke his ankle on the first drive of the game and had to be carted off of the field.  A few plays later Bengals defensive tackle Tim Krumrie broke a bone in his leg in two places and had to be carted off himself.  When things calmed down the Niners were driving down the field for a score.  They had a few drops deep in Cincinnati territory and had to settle for a 41 yard field goal from kicker Mike Cofer.  The Niners held the Bengals and on their next drive.  On the 49ers next drive Jerry Rice made one of the more famous catches in Super Bowl history when he caught a ball with one hand after he tipped it to himself with his other hand.  They moved the ball inside the Bengals’ 10 but safety David Fulcher stonewalled fullback Tom Rathman on 3rd and goal from the 2.  Niners’ center Randy Cross botched the snap on the field goal attempt and Cofer could not convert on the 19 yard attempt, the shortest field goal miss in Super Bowl history.  The two teams went back and forth for the rest of the half without either team being in position to score.  Finally towards the end of the first half Bengals cornerback Ray Horton took a short San Fransisco punt and returned it into 49ers’ territory to the 44 yard line.  They could only manage 28 yards on the drive but it was enough to set up kicker Jim Breech for a game tying 34 yard field goal with 1:15 left to go in the half.  That was all the scoring in the first half, the teams were tied at 3-3 going into the break.

Kick returner Stanford Jennings scored the first TD of the game in the 3rd

The Bengals took the ball to begin the 2nd half and held it for more than half of the 3rd quarter.  Esiason got the Bengals going on their first sustained offensive drive of the game but after 12 plays, 61 yards, and 9:15 of clock time all that they could muster was a 43 yard field goal from Breech to give the Bengals their first lead of the game at 6-3.  The Bengals D forced a punt on the Niners’ first possession of the 2nd half but Esiason threw an interception to linebacker Bill Romanowski on the very first play of the next drive and set the Niners up with a 1st and 10 at the Bengals’ 23 yard line.  The Niners could not generate a 1st down and they settled for a 32 yard field goal by Cofer to tie it at 6-6.  There was less than a minute left in the 3rd quarter and there was still no touchdowns in the game.  No Super Bowl had ever gone without a touchdown through the first 3 quarters.  Bengals running back Stanford Jennings made sure that this Super Bowl wouldn’t be the first.  He took the kickoff after the Cofer field goal and ran it back 93 yards for a touchdown.  It was the first TD of the game and it gave the Bengals their first lead of the game at 13-6 with a little more than a quarter to play.

John Taylor caught the game winning TD with :39 left

Montana was not rattled despite being held out of the end zone for three full quarters.  He hit a 31 yard pass to Rice to open up the next drive.  The next play was a 40 yard pass completion to running back Roger Craig.  After cornerback Lewis Billups dropped a sure interception in the end zone Montana connected with Rice from 14 yards out to tie the game at 13-13.  The Bengals went three-and-out on their next possession.  Montana went deep to Rice yet again, this time going 44 yards on a connection, but the Niners drive stalled and Cofer missed another field goal, this one from 49 yards out.  Esiason and the Bengals went right down the field on the next drive, going 10 plays and 46 yards but once again settled for a Breech field goal, this one from 40 yards out, to give the Bengals a 16-13 lead with 3:20 left to go in the game.  After a penalty on the kickoff the Niners had to start the next drive from their own 8 yard line.  Montana led the 49ers on a 11 play, 92 yard drive.  Montana and Rice keyed the drive, including a 27 yard connection on 2nd and 20 from the Bengals 45 yard line.  Montana capped off the drive by finding receiver John Taylor sliding into the back of the end zone with a 10 yard TD pass with just :39 remaining to give the 49ers a 20-16 lead.  The Bengals couldn’t pull off a miracle and Montana had his 3rd Super Bowl Championship.

Final Score:  San Fransisco 49ers 20, Cincinnati Bengals 16

Montana solidified his “Joe Cool” reputation with his performance in the 4th quarter of Super Bowl XXIII.  The Niners were well on their way to the “Team of the Decade” moniker and would solidify it with a blowout win over the Broncos in the next Super Bowl.  The Bengals have not even made it back to a championship game since the 1988 season.

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