The Top 10 Super Bowls

The Giants won their fourth Super Bowl when Eli Manning led a fourth-quarter drive allowing them to defeat the Patriots 21-17 in Super Bowl XLVI. While this was one of the most anticipated Super Bowls in recent years, and the Patriots had a chance to win on the last play, the game did not have enough big plays to make my list of the top 10 Super Bowls of all time.

1. N.Y. Jets 16, Baltimore Colts 7 (Super Bowl III) — This is the game that made the Super Bowl a cultural institution. The first two championship games were routs by the heavily favored Packers over the Chiefs and Raiders respectively. In Super Bowl III, the Baltimore Colts were expected to pick up where the Packers left off and dominate the Jets. However, New York quarterback Joe Namath would have none of it and he guaranteed the win in the pregame hype and then delivered on his promise by picking apart the Baltimore defense and leading the Jets to the upset. It marked the first time that the American Football League representative defeated the powerful NFL champion and it changed football forever.

2. Pittsburgh 35, Dallas 31 (Super Bowl XIII) — The Steelers became the first team to win three Super Bowls when they raced out to a big lead and then held off a furious Dallas rally to secure the victory. Quarterback Terry Bradshaw threw for 318 yards and four touchdowns to earn the game’s Most Valuable Player Award.

3. St. Louis 23, Tennessee 16 (Super Bowl XXXIV) — The Rams used the passing of Kurt Warner to gain command of this game, but Tennessee would not go down easily despite falling behind by 16 points. After Warner threw a 73-yard touchdown pass to give St. Louis the lead late in the fourth quarter, Tennessee quarterback Steve McNair led the Titans on a furious last-minute drive. On the game’s final play, McNair hit Kevin Dyson with a short pass and it looked he would get into the endzone for the tying touchdown. However, St. Louis linebacker Mike Jones tackled Dyson on the 1-yard line as the game ended.

4. N.Y. Giants 20, Buffalo 19 (Super Bowl XXV) — The heavily favored Bills had the most explosive offense in the NFL, but the Giants came at them with a hard-hitting defense that featured Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor. The Giants held the Bills in check and won the game when Buffalo PK Scott Norwood’s 47-yard field goal attempt on the game’s final play was wide right by inches.

5. New England 20, St. Louis 17 (Super Bowl XXXVI) — Patriot placekicker Adam Vinatieri kicked a 48-yard field goal as time expired to give the Patriots their first Super Bowl title. The Patriots were heavy underdogs to the explosive Rams, but Bill Belichick’s physical defense prevented Kurt Warner from wreaking havoc. Patriot quarterback Tom Brady threw a first-half touchdown pass to David Patten and also led the late drive that set up the winning kick.

6. Pittsburgh 27, Arizona 23 (Super Bowl XLIII)

7. San Francisco 20, Cincinnati 16 (Super Bowl XXIII)

8. N.Y. Giants 17, New England 14 (Super Bowl XLII)

9. Denver 31, Green Bay 24 (Super Bowl XXXII)

10. Kansas City 23, Minnesota 7 (Super Bowl IV)

Super Bowl III recap

Super Bowl XIII recap

Super Bowl XXXIV recap

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