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On this day in Super Bowl History: January 31

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John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports


With Super Bowl 2013 just around the corner, Rant Sports takes a look at various moments and games in Super Bowl history. Here’s a look at what happened on this date, January 31, throughout the history of the NFL.


January 31, 1988: Washington Redskins vs. Denver Broncos

The 1998 season was shortened by a players strike. Though only the first game of the year was missed, the next three games were played using “replacements.” In the end, the Denver Broncos, who were playing in their second consecutive Super Bowl, met up with the Washington Redskins in Super Bowl XXII. 

The Redskins were led by Doug Williams, who (like Colin Kaepernick this year) earned the starting job midway through the season after starting the year as a back-up. After falling behind, the Redskins scored a record-breaking 35 points in the 2nd quarter of the game in route to 42 unanswered points. Washington would go on to win the game by a final score of 42-10 giving them their second title. Behind his four touchdown passes, Williams was named the game’s MVP.

The ten point deficit remains the largest deficit overcome by the winning team (though the New Orleans Saints tied the record in Super Bowl XLIV).


January 31, 1993: Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills

Super Bowl XXVII featured the Dallas Cowboys and the Buffalo Bills. The Cowboys defeated the Bills by a score of 52-17 making the Bills the first team to ever lose three consecutive Super Bowls (they’d go on to lose four in a row the following season). Additionally, the victory gave the Cowboys their third Super Bowl title, their first under Jerry Jones. Dallas forced nine turnovers (a record that still stands), scoring thirty-five points off of four interceptions and five fumble recoveries.

This game featured one of the most embarrassing plays in NFL history as Leon Lett began showing off while heading into the end zone after a turnover. However, before he could make it across the goal line, Don Beebe knocked the ball out of his hands and out of the end zone giving the Bills the ball.

Troy Aikman was named the MVP of the game.


January 31, 1999: Denver Broncos vs. Atlanta Falcons

In Super Bowl XXXIII, the Denver Broncos won their second consecutive Super Bowl ring after defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34-19. John Elway became the oldest player in the NFL to earn Super Bowl MVP honors at the age of 38 against his former coach, Dan Reeves. It would be Elway’s final season.

One of the biggest controversies in NFL history surrounded this Super Bowl. Falcon Eugene Robinson was arrested for solicitation of prostitution the night before the game. Despite this, he was still allowed to play in the game. What made the incident even worse was that earlier in the day on which the incident occurred, Robinson received the Bart Starr Award for his “high moral character.”


Be sure to join us again tomorrow as we look at what happened on February 1 in Super Bowl history.

See also:

On this date in Super Bowl history: January 28,  January 29, and January 30.


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