Super Bowl XIX
|Super Bowl XIX|
|Date||January 20, 1985|
|Stadium||Stanford Stadium, Stanford, California|
|MVP||Joe Montana, Quarterback|
|Favorite||49ers by 3.5|
|Future Hall of Famers|
49ers: Bill Walsh (coach), Fred Dean, Ronnie Lott, Joe Montana.|
Dolphins: Don Shula (coach), Dan Marino, Dwight Stephenson.
|National anthem||San Francisco Boys Chorus and San Francisco Girls Chorus and Piedmont Children's Chorus and San Francisco Children's Chorus|
|Coin toss||Ronald Reagan (via satellite from the White House) and Hugh McElhenny|
|Halftime show||"World of Children's Dreams" with the USAF Tops In Blue|
|TV in the United States|
|Announcers||Frank Gifford, Don Meredith, and Joe Theismann|
(est. 85.53 million viewers)
|Cost of 30-second commercial||US$525,000|
Super Bowl XIX was an American football game between the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Miami Dolphins and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion San Francisco 49ers to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 1984 season. The 49ers defeated the Dolphins by the score of 38–16, to win their second Super Bowl. The game was played on January 20, 1985, at Stanford Stadium, on the campus of Stanford University in Stanford, California.
The game was hyped as the battle between two great quarterbacks: Miami's Dan Marino and San Francisco's Joe Montana. The Dolphins entered their fifth Super Bowl in team history after posting a 14–2 regular season record. The 49ers were making their second Super Bowl appearance after becoming the first team ever to win 15 regular season games since the league expanded to a 16-game schedule in 1978.
With Marino and Montana, the game became the first Super Bowl in which the starting quarterbacks of each team both threw for over 300 yards. In addition, the two teams combined for 851 total offensive yards, which at that time was a Super Bowl record. But after trailing 10–7 in the first quarter, the 49ers would end up taking the game in dominating fashion, scoring three touchdowns in the second quarter, and 10 unanswered points in the second half. Montana, who was named the Super Bowl MVP, completed 24 of 35 passes for a Super Bowl-record 331 yards and three touchdowns. He also broke the Super Bowl record for most rushing yards gained by a quarterback with his 5 rushes for 59 yards and 1 rushing touchdown.
This was the first Super Bowl to be televised in the United States by ABC, joining the annual broadcasting rotation of the game with CBS and NBC. It was also the first time that the sitting U.S. president participated in the coin toss ceremony; Ronald Reagan appeared live via satellite from the White House and tossed the coin. This Super Bowl was unique in that it fell on the same day that he was inaugurated for a second term; because Inauguration Day (January 20) fell on a Sunday, Reagan was sworn in privately and the public ceremony took place the following day.
NFL owners voted to award Super Bowl XIX to Stanford University Stadium in Stanford, California on December 14, 1982 at an owners meeting held in Dallas. It became the fourth primarily college stadium to host a Super Bowl, following Tulane Stadium, then the home of the New Orleans Saints (1970, 1972, and 1975), Rice Stadium (1974) and the Rose Bowl (1977, 1980, 1983, 1987, and 1993).
San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers advanced to their second Super Bowl in team history after becoming the first team ever to win 15 regular season games since the league expanded to a 16-game schedule in 1978. Much of the hype surrounding the team was their offense, which boasted five Pro Bowlers. Quarterback Joe Montana recorded 279 out of 432 completions for 3,630 yards, 28 touchdowns, and only 10 interceptions. Running back Roger Craig was one of the 49ers' major weapons, both rushing and receiving. Craig was the team's second-leading rusher with 649 rushing yards and 7 touchdowns, and also caught 71 passes for 675 yards. Pro Bowl running back Wendell Tyler, who had rushed for a team record 1,262 yards during the regular season, recorded 7 rushing touchdowns, and also caught 28 passes for 230 yards and 2 touchdown receptions. Fullback Earl Cooper also made an impact with 41 receptions for 459 yards and 4 touchdowns. Wide receivers Freddie Solomon and Dwight Clark also were deep threats, gaining a combined total of 1,617 yards and 16 touchdowns. Up front, three of the 49ers' five starting offensive linemen, Randy Cross, Fred Quillan, and Keith Fahnhorst, had been selected to play in the Pro Bowl. Overall, San Francisco's offense finished the season ranked second in the NFL in scoring (475 points) and fourth in total yards (6,544).
Although they did not get as much media attention as the offense, the 49ers' defense led the league in fewest points allowed during the regular season (227). All four of the 49ers' starting defensive backs, Ronnie Lott, Eric Wright, Carlton Williamson, and Dwight Hicks, were selected to play in the Pro Bowl. Pro Bowl linebacker Keena Turner was also a major defensive weapon, recording 2 sacks and 4 interceptions for 51 yards. Defensive end Dwaine Board anchored the line, recording 10 sacks and a fumble recovery.
As the Dolphins advanced to the Super Bowl for the fifth time in franchise history, much of the media focus was on Miami's young quarterback, Dan Marino. In just his second year in the league, he broke nearly every NFL single-season passing record. Marino set a record for the most completions in a season (362) and became the first quarterback ever to throw for over 5,000 yards, reaching a total of 5,084. He set the record for the most games throwing for at least 300 passing yards (9) and the most games with 400 yards (4). Marino's 48 touchdown passes broke the previous record of 36, which was held by both George Blanda for the Houston Oilers in 1961 and Y.A. Tittle for the New York Giants in 1963. And he had the most games with at least 4 or more touchdown passes (6) and the most consecutive games with at least 4 touchdown passes (4).
Thus going into Super Bowl XIX, many sports writers predicted that it would be the first of many Super Bowls that Marino would play in during his career. Marino had a unique ability to read the defenses quickly before setting up to throw, and his skill of quickly releasing the ball made it very difficult for defenders to sack him. In addition, he had protection given to him by an offensive line led by All-Pro center Dwight Stephenson and Pro Bowl guard Ed Newman. Coming into Super Bowl XIX, Marino had only been sacked 13 times in the regular season and not once in the playoffs.
The Dolphins had a number of offensive threats for Marino to use. Wide receivers Mark Clayton (73 receptions, 1,389 yards, 18 touchdowns) and Mark Duper (71 receptions, 1,306 yards, 8 touchdowns) became the first teammates ever to each gain over 1,300 receiving yards in one season, while Clayton's 18 touchdown catches broke the NFL single-season record of 17 set by Don Hutson in 1942. Receiver Nat Moore caught 43 passes for 574 yards and 6 touchdowns, while tight end Dan Johnson contributed 34 receptions for 426 yards. While Miami's main offensive attack was passing, they still had a trio of great running backs: Tony Nathan, Woody Bennett, and Joe Carter. Both Nathan and Bennett finished the season with over 1,000 combined rushing and receiving yards, while Carter contributed 495 rushing yards. Despite Miami's superb offense, punter Reggie Roby still made the Pro Bowl, averaging 44.7 yards per punt with a net gain average of 38.7.
However, the Dolphins' defense was a little suspect. They tied the Houston Oilers and the Minnesota Vikings for the most rushing yards allowed during the regular season (4.7 yards per attempt), and ranked just 19th in fewest yards allowed (5,759). The main bright spots on the defense were safeties, brothers Lyle and Glenn Blackwood, along with Pro Bowl inside linebacker A.J. Duhe, Pro Bowl nose tackle Bob Baumhower, and defensive end Doug Betters. Glenn Blackwood had picked off 6 passes during the season and returned them for 169 yards, while Betters recorded 14 sacks and a fumble recovery. Linebacker Charles Bowser was also a big contributor, recording 9 sacks and one fumble recovery.
Despite their defensive flaws, the Dolphins' powerful offense led the NFL in scoring (513 points) and total yards gained (7,064), and helped the team reach an AFC best 14–2 regular season record.
Further information: NFL playoffs, 1984-85
The Dolphins gained 405 yards of total offense in their 31–10 playoff win over the Seattle Seahawks, and over 500 yards as they defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers, 45–28, in the AFC Championship Game. In the victory over the Steelers, Marino completed 21 of 32 passes for 421 yards and 4 touchdowns, with 1 interception.
Meanwhile, the 49ers' underrated defense allowed the team to blitz through the playoffs. Although Montana threw a combined total of 5 interceptions in their 2 games, they only gave up a combined total of 10 points and zero touchdowns in their victories over the New York Giants, 21–10, and the Chicago Bears, 23–0.
At 33–3, the combined records for the two teams coming into the game were and still are the best in Super Bowl history. The 49ers were 17–1 and the Dolphins 16–2 including their playoff games.
Pregame news and notes
This was the second time a team could have been considered a home team for a Super Bowl, with Stanford just 30 miles away from San Francisco proper - Stanford is actually 15 miles closer to the city than Santa Clara, where the 49ers play "home" games today. Promotion for the Super Bowl also contributed to that feeling with many photographs of the Vince Lombardi Trophy near San Francisco landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge. Thus, the 49ers may be considered the only team to have won the Super Bowl at home. The Los Angeles Rams also played near home at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California in Super Bowl XIV, but lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
As a result of the 1982 television contract signed by the NFL with the three networks, this game was the first Super Bowl to be televised in the United States by ABC, as they earned their first turn at the Super Bowl, with a new alternation process started for the 1983 game. Previously, the Super Bowl telecast alternated between CBS and NBC, while the networks simulcast the first AFL-NFL World Championship Game.
ABC's NFL program, Monday Night Football, happened to be celebrating its 15th season in 1984. Two more ABC-aired Super Bowls would occur during major anniversary seasons for MNF – Super Bowl XXIX (also won by the 49ers) closed out the 25th anniversary season (1994), and Super Bowl XXXIV (won by the St. Louis Rams, bitter rivals of the 49ers) closed out the 30th anniversary season (1999).
Frank Gifford was the play-by-play announcer, while then-ABC Sports analyst Don Meredith and then-Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann served as color commentators. Al Michaels and Jim Lampley hosted the pregame (2 hours), halftime, and postgame (Lampley presided over the Vince Lombardi Trophy presentation ceremony) coverage for ABC. Michaels and Lampley were joined by analysts O. J. Simpson (who would normally have been the second color commentator) and Tom Landry (in a separate booth during the game). Also helping out with ABC's coverage were Jack Whitaker, Dick Schaap, Donna de Varona, Ray Gandolf, and ABC News reporters Stone Phillips, Jeff Greenfield, Judd Rose, and Bill Redeker.
This would be the only ABC Super Bowl for Gifford as play-by-play announcer, the final game for Don Meredith and the second (and last) time a commentator for the Super Bowl (Theismann) was an active player (Jack Kemp in Super Bowl II was the only other active player to provide commentary). Michaels would call ABC's next six Super Bowls, until the network lost NFL rights in 2006.
The pregame festivities featured a tribute to the NFL and an appearance by various team mascots. Later, a mega-choir formed by members of the San Francisco Children's Chorus, San Francisco Boys Chorus, San Francisco Girls Chorus and Piedmont Children's Choir performed the national anthem under well known choir director Louis Magor.
In honor of Inauguration Day, Ronald Reagan, himself a longtime California resident and former Governor of the state from 1967–75, became the first president to participate in a Super Bowl coin toss ceremony. However, he did it from the White House via satellite. Pro Football Hall of Fame running back Hugh McElhenny, a former 49er, was on the field during the ceremony. The U.S. Air Force provided four T-37 aircraft from nearby Mather Air Force Base (Sacramento, CA) and its 455th Flying Training Squadron for the fly-over. At $255 per hour of flying time for each aircraft, this T-37 flyover ranks as the most economical in the history of Super Bowls. In addition, all the pilots were young officers symbolizing California as the land of opportunity and youth.
The halftime show was titled "World of Children's Dreams" and featured Tops In Blue, an elite performing tour ensemble consisting of members from the U.S. Air Force. Additional performers were recruited from USAF active, retired, and their dependents.
Jack Buck was the play-by-play announcer, while Hank Stram served as color commentator for the CBS' national radio coverage. Brent Musburger hosted the pregame, halftime, and postgame coverage for CBS Radio. Musburger was joined by analysts Irv Cross and Jimmy Snyder. Locally, Super Bowl XIX was broadcast by WIOD-AM in Miami with Rick Weaver and Hank Goldberg and by KCBS-AM in San Francisco with Don Klein and Don Heinreich.
Shown on Channel 4, the XIX Super Bowl was the third to be broadcast live and in its entirety in the United Kingdom.
In popular culture
Clips from this game can be seen in the movie Ace Ventura: Pet Detective as the character Ray Finkle is in reality Dolphins kicker Uwe von Schamann. Von Schamann made three field goals and an extra point in this game, but Finkle missed the game-winning field goal in a fictional Super Bowl XVII.
The NFL's Greatest Games episode Masters of the Game focuses on Super Bowl XIX. The film was narrated by Brad Crandall after legendary NFL Films announcer John Facenda died in September 1984. This was the last Super Bowl highlight film produced by NFL Films using film stock; beginning with the 1985 season, NFL Films videos were produced on videotape.
The Oliver Stone film, Any Given Sunday, features an (off-screen) "Pantheon Cup" championship game where San Francisco beats Miami, 32–13. Stone, a longtime 49ers fan, based his film's finale on Super Bowl XIX.
Instead of the predicted shootout between Dan Marino and Joe Montana, the game was mostly one-sided. The 49ers' defense only allowed 25 rushing yards and 16 Dolphins points. San Francisco also intercepted Marino twice and sacked him 4 times. The Dolphins set a Super Bowl record for fewest rush attempts in a game (9).
But in the opening minutes of the game, it seemed that the game would live up to the hype. On the opening kickoff, 49ers rookie kick returner Derrick Harmon caught the ball too close to the sidelines and stepped out of bounds at the San Francisco 6-yard line. The 49ers managed to advance to the 41-yard line but were forced to punt, and Dolphins defensive back Fulton Walker returned the punt 9 yards to the Miami 36-yard line. Then on their first play of the drive, Marino completed a 25-yard pass to Tony Nathan. Five plays later, Miami reached the San Francisco 23-yard line. But on third down, 49ers cornerback Eric Wright tackled wide receiver Mark Clayton 2 yards shy of the first down. Miami had to settle for a 37-yard field goal from Uwe von Schamann.
The Dolphins' 3–0 lead did not last long, as the 49ers stormed down the field on their next possession. San Francisco drove 78 yards in 8 plays, culminating in a 33-yard touchdown pass from Montana to reserve running back Carl Monroe to give them a 7–3 lead. But Miami retook the lead on their ensuing drive. After a 5-yard rush by Nathan, the Dolphins went into a no-huddle offense, preventing the 49ers from making substitutions and keeping their run defense on the field. Marino completed five consecutive passes, hitting Clayton for 18 yards, Mark Duper for 11, Clayton again for 13, and tight end Dan Johnson for 21. On the next play, Marino finished the drive by hitting Johnson for a 2-yard touchdown pass, giving the Dolphins a 10–7 lead with 45 seconds left in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the 49ers began to take control of the game. Bill Walsh switched to a 4–1–6 (or dime defense) to slow down Miami's passing attack, with Keena Turner as the sole linebacker. Miami tried to run against the 4–1–6 alignment, to no avail. Safety Dwight Hicks broke up two consecutive Marino passes, and the Dolphins were forced to punt from their own 10-yard line. Then after taking the ball at the Miami 47-yard line, Montana scrambled for a 19-yard run, and then completed a 16-yard pass to wide receiver Dwight Clark to reach the 12-yard line. From there, Wendell Tyler rushed for 4 yards, and then Montana threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Roger Craig, giving the 49ers a 14–10 lead.
Miami then had to punt again on their ensuing possession, and San Francisco defensive back Dana McLemore returned the ball 28 yards to the 49ers 45-yard line. After advancing 15 yards with two running plays, Montana completed a pair of passes to tight end Russ Francis to move the ball 29 yards to the Miami 11-yard line. Craig ran for 5 yards on the next play, and then Montana ran the final 6 yards to the end zone for a touchdown, making the score 21–10. After the ensuing kickoff, Miami again was forced to punt after three plays, and McLemore returned Reggie Roby's 39-yard punt 10 yards to the 49ers 48-yard line. Montana was sacked for a 5-yard loss by Doug Betters on the first play of the ensuing drive, but he struck back with a 20-yard completion to Craig and a 7-yard run over the next two plays. On the next play, wide receiver Freddie Solomon caught a pass from Montana, took one step, and then lost the ball due to a hit from safety Lyle Blackwood. Blackwood quickly recovered the ball and took off for the 49ers' end zone, but field judge Bob Lewis blew the play dead, ruling that Solomon's fumble was an incomplete pass. Bill Quinby, the side judge, who was nearest to the play, did not make any call. Five plays later, Craig finished the nine-play, 52-yard drive with his second touchdown on a 2-yard run, increasing the 49ers' lead to 28–10.
With about two minutes left in the half, the Dolphins finally managed to get a good drive going on their next possession. Marino completed seven out of nine passes, the last one being a 30-yard pass to tight end Joe Rose, to reach the 49ers' 12-yard line. But San Francisco's defense tightened up on the next three plays, forcing two incompletions and a completed pass for no gain, and Miami was forced to settle for von Schamann's second field goal of the game to cut their deficit to 28–13 with 12 seconds left in the half. Then Miami caught a break as the 49ers botched the ensuing kickoff. San Francisco lineman Guy McIntyre received von Schamann's short kick and was about to down the ball, but then changed his mind at the last second and decided to return it. This turned out to be a big mistake; McIntyre fumbled while being leveled by rookie Joe Carter, and Jim Jensen recovered the ball for Miami at the 49ers' 12-yard line. After that, von Schamann kicked his third field goal on the last play of the half, cutting the score to 28–16. "I can laugh about the play now, but it wasn't funny at the time," McIntyre said after the game. "My first instinct when I got the ball was to fall down. Then I heard everyone yelling, 'Get up! Get up!' So I got up, and here comes someone sneaking underneath me, and he hit the ball."
But any thoughts of a Miami comeback ended early in the third quarter. On the first play second half, 49ers defensive end Dwaine Board tackled Nathan for a 1-yard loss. Then after Marino threw an incompletion, Board sacked him for a 9-yard loss on third down. For the fourth time in the game, Roby had to punt, and again McLemore gave the 49ers good field position with an 8-yard return to San Francisco's 47-yard line. The 49ers then drove 43 yards and scored on kicker Ray Wersching's 27-yard field goal. On the Dolphins' ensuing drive, they were forced to punt again after Marino was sacked twice (once by defensive lineman Manu Tuiasosopo and once by Board). Starting their own 30-yard line after a 5-yard return by McLemore, Montana completed a 40-yard pass to Tyler, followed up with a 14-yard completion to Francis. Three plays later, Craig scored his third touchdown on a 16-yard reception to make the score 38–16. The score proved to be the last one from either team, as the defenses of both teams took over for the rest of the game – especially the 49ers' defense, who intercepted Marino twice.
Overall, San Francisco gained a Super Bowl-record 537 yards, breaking the Oakland Raiders' record of 429 yards in Super Bowl XI, while limiting Miami to 314, with just 25 rushing yards. San Francisco's 38 points also tied a Super Bowl record set by the Raiders in Super Bowl XVIII.
The 49ers' 288 offensive yards in the first half also tied the Raiders in Super Bowl XI for the most offensive yards in a half during a Super Bowl.
Marino finished the game with 29 out of 50 pass completions for 318 yards, 1 touchdown, and 2 interceptions. Clayton was the top receiver of the game, with 6 receptions for 92 yards. Walker returned 4 kickoffs for 93 yards and gained 15 yards on 2 punt returns. Nathan was the Dolphins leading rusher with 18 yards, while also catching 10 passes for 83 yards. Craig had 58 rushing yards, 77 receiving yards, and 3 touchdowns. He was the first player ever to score 3 touchdowns in a Super Bowl, and his 2 touchdown catches also tied a Super Bowl record. Tyler led San Francisco in rushing with 65 yards, and also caught 4 passes for 70 yards. Clark caught 6 passes for 77 yards. Board recorded 2 sacks. McLemore recorded 51 punt return yards, the second most in Super Bowl history. Sports Illustrated called 49ers defensive tackle Gary Johnson the Super Bowl's "unofficial defensive MVP" after he recorded one sack, flushed Marino out of the pocket numerous times, and had four unassisted tackles.
49ers rookie defensive tackle Michael Carter became the first athlete ever to win an Olympic medal and Super Bowl ring in the same year. Before this game he had won a silver medal in the shot put competition at the 1984 Summer Olympics.
After the game, Lyle Blackwood criticized the referee's ruling of Freddie Solomon's fumble as an incomplete pass. "You don't want the game to hinge on that play, but you never know," Blackwood said. "I could have taken the ball up the sideline. That's a 14-point swing." However, other Dolphins were not convinced. "We were dominated to the point where one play didn't make much of a difference," said Dolphins coach Don Shula. "Our major objective was to contain Montana, and we did a terrible, terrible job of it," added defensive coach Chuck Studley. Even Reggie Roby, who averaged only 39.3 yards per punt and didn't place any of his 6 punts inside the 20, took some responsibility for the loss. "I was trying to kill the ball, and I kicked it bad," he said. "I didn't hit one well. I was scared – scared to make a mistake. It was the worst game of my life, counting high school, college, counting everything." Meanwhile, in the 49ers' locker room, Joe Montana had his own explanation for the win. "As far as my own game, well, I'd have to admit it was pretty close to the best I've ever played. I didn't throw anything I didn't have confidence in. We got in sort of a groove. Once you get going like that you gain confidence, and it carries over to the defense, and then back to the offense. It's a snowball kind of thing."
at Stanford Stadium, Stanford, California
Source: NFL.com Super Bowl XIX
1Completions/attempts 2Carries 3Long gain 4Receptions