The Super Bowl is the most watched sporting event in the world each and every year for many reasons. But there are certain moments that have happened throughout the years that are still talked about to this day (the Seahawks still did not run the ball on the one-yard line).
Not every great moment in the Super Bowl’s history requires it to end in a touchdown. Some have even happened before the opening kickoff.
These next few moments are the reasons for why people continue to tune into the NFL’s big game year after year. The moments are also one of the main causes for why very little work is accomplished in offices all over the country the day after the Super Bowl.
That and the whole getting blackout drunk-thing on a Sunday.
8 – Super Bowl XLIV: New Orleans Saints vs. Indianapolis Colts
Saints shock the world (and the Colts) with an onside kick
Trailing 10-6 at the half, the Saints felt they needed to dig into their bag of tricks to increase their shot at a Super Bowl victory over the Colts. So that is just what they did.
New Orleans head coach Sean Payton called for an onside kick to open the second half and it worked to perfection. Indianapolis never saw it coming and the Saints were able to recover the ball and drive downfield for a touchdown.
7 – Super Bowl X: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Dallas Cowboys
Lynn Swann makes his own immaculate reception
As the second quarter was coming to a close, the Steelers had to begin their last drive of the half from their own six-yard line. After a couple of short runs on first and second down, Pittsburgh quarterback Terry Bradshaw fired a bomb downfield to wide receiver Lynn Swann.
At first, Swann had it knocked away by a Cowboys defender. But the receiver did what he was taught in Pee Wee football and kept his eye on the ball until it landed back into his hands.
6 – Super Bowl XXVII: Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
Don Beebe says, “not so fast Mr. Lett!”
With the Cowboys already up 52-17 over the Bills in the game’s fourth quarter, Buffalo was basically playing for pride and decided to go for it on fourth down. Bills quarterback Frank Reich ended up getting sacked and fumbling the ball out into the open field.
Dallas defensive lineman Leon Lett then scooped the ball up like it was a rotisserie chicken and started heading the other way toward the end zone. As he began to get closer to scoring, Lett started to celebrate.
Little did he know, speedy Buffalo wide receiver Don Beebe had been chasing him the whole time and was able to knock the ball out of Lett’s hand before he crossed the goal line.
5 – Super Bowl XLII: New York Giants vs. New England Patriots
You wouldn’t know from listening to Joe Buck, but David Tyree just caught that
Two minutes and 45 seconds is all that stood between the Patriots and the NFL’s second perfect season ever. But somebody forgot to tell that to the Giants.
In the midst of their game-winning drive, New York quarterback Eli Manning was able to avoid the grasps of the New England defenders and chuck the ball 32 yards down the field to Giants receiver David Tyree. The combination of the scramble by Manning and the catch by Tyree is a moment that Patriots fans still hate to talk about.
4 – Super Bowl XLIX: New England Patriots vs. Seattle Seahawks
Malcolm Butler’s interception causes Tom Brady to scream like a little girl
To this day, no one, absolutely no one, knows why the Seahawks opted to throw the ball on second and goal from the Patriots’ one-yard line. But it was the decision Seattle made and it backfired as their surprise play ended in New England rookie cornerback Malcolm Butler intercepting the ball and sealing the win for the Patriots.
It also caused Tom Brady to jump up and down like he just received a new pair of Uggs in the mail.
3 – Super Bowl XXXIV: Tennessee Titans vs. St. Louis Rams
Close enough does not count for anything in the Super Bowl
Looking up at the scoreboard with the Rams leading 16-0 midway through the third quarter, everyone watching already figured this game was over. But the Titans scored 16 unanswered points of their own and managed to tie the game with under three minutes left to go in the fourth quarter.
St. Louis pulled ahead with a quick touchdown pass and Tennessee had one last drive to stay in contention. The Titans made it all the way down to the Rams 10-yard line and had five seconds to run one more play.
Tennessee wide receiver Kevin Dyson caught a pass from quarterback Steve McNair and the receiver’s path to the end zone looked clear. However, the Titans’ dreams were shattered like Teddy Bridgewater’s knee and Dyson was tackled just one yard short of the goal line as time expired.
2 – Super Bowl XXXII: Denver Broncos vs. Green Bay Packers
If John Elway were playing charades, most would guess he was pretending to be a helicopter
At 37 years old, the career of Broncos quarterback John Elway was beginning to come to a close and he had yet to win a game on the NFL’s biggest stage. Despite leading Denver to three Super Bowl appearances earlier in his career, the quarterback had never been able end the game on the winning side of the scoreboard.
So when he got another shot in the 1997 season to play in the Super Bowl, he was not going to let anyone get in his way of a victory. The determination Elway showed when he scrambled for a first-down in the third quarter is exactly what is shown by those who are truly championship material.
He put his old bones on the line and it paid off when he and his teammates were hoisting the Vince Lombardi trophy in the air at the end of the night.
1 – Super Bowl XXXVI: New England Patriots vs. St. Louis Rams
The Patriots win as a team and do Super Bowl introductions as a team
Traditionally before the start of the game, each team competing has a specific group of players introduced one by one.
But coming into this matchup against a heavily favored Rams team, the Patriots wanted to make a statement and it began with their player introductions. New England opted to take a different route and instead they showed a sign of great solidarity by having the PA announcer introduce them as a team.
Then they went out and shocked the world by ending the night with a Super Bowl victory.