This week 17 years ago we first saw a Super Bowl game for the ages. It was the “Greatest show on turf” against a sixth-round QB in Super Bowl XXXVI. It was also a very similar situation to what we will see this Sunday, but a bit of role reversal.
What you saw 17 years ago was a New England Patriots head coach and quarterback that were in their second season together. It was Brady’s first season in which he was the starter after a season-ending injury to QB Drew Bledsoe. It was also the start of a dynasty we will forever be talking about as one of the greatest dynasties in sports.
As we come back to the present, we look at what the Rams have in comparison. That is the same amount of years their head coach and quarterback have been together. Sean McVay is in his second year as the head coach of the Los Angeles Rams. His QB Jared Goff is in his third. The Rams also have a tough, hard-hitting defense, which we saw from the Patriots during the earlier stages of success. Can they get revenge for their loss 17 years ago? Let’s take a look the top five moments from Super Bowl XXXVI between the Patriots and Rams.
Top five moments from Super Bowl XXXVI
5. Terrell Buckley recovers Ricky Proehl’s fumble
It was hard for the Rams to get much going in the first half of this game. Their opening drive ended with a field goal. Then the Ty Law interception happened, which we’ll talk about shortly. On a drive that looked like the Rams were finally getting momentum, WR Ricky Proehl fumbles the ball over to Patriots. It would’ve been a first down catch on the other side of the 50, could’ve continued into a scoring drive. Instead, Terrell Buckley recovers the fumble and gave the Patriots a short field that would help set up the first of many Tom Brady Super Bowl touchdowns. Rickey Proehl is remembered mostly for his game-tying TD in this game, but this fumble by him was a huge game changer. This fumble isn’t something greatly remembered, but it sure did have an impact on the outcome.
4. David Patten’s 8-Yard TD
After Terrell Buckley returned that fumble by Ricky Proehl, the Patriots drove down the field right before halftime to give themselves a 14-3 lead. Tom Brady led the Patriots down to the eight yard line, where he then threw a TD strike to WR David Patten. The fifth greatest moment in this game led right into the fourth. The Patriots would carry the momentum from that TD to add more points in the third quarter and go up 17-3 on the Rams.
3. Ricky Proehl’s game-tying TD
Being down 17-3 at one point, the Rams were down, but they weren’t out. There was still plenty of time left to get back in this game. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter when they did so. Rams QB Kurt Warner was known for his success in fourth quarters. With the team down by two touchdowns, Warner did everything he could to bring his team back. First it was Kurt Warner getting in for a TD to put the score at 17-10. Next it was the TD pass to Proehl. This was the one that brought the Rams all the way back, where Proehl made up for his lost fumble earlier in game. Proehl caught the ball at about the 15 yard line, where he then weaved his way around two Patriots defenders and into the end zone for the tying score.
2. Ty Law’s pick six starts the scoring are Patriots
This was the first of two interceptions thrown by Kurt Warner, but this one really set the tone for how the game was going to go. It was a 3-0 score in the favor of the Rams. They were looking for the opportunity to add on more points. That was until Patriots DB Ty Law took matters into his own hands with the interception returned for a touchdown. That pick six put the Patriots up 7-3, which helped the Patriots gain their eventual 17-3 lead in third quarter.
1. Adam Vinatieri’s game-winning FG
This kick by Adam Vinatieri will go down as one of the best Super Bowl moments in history, especially as a part of Tom Brady’s legacy. When Warner found Proehl for the game-tying TD, he left too much time on the clock for Tom Brady and the Patriots. There was about a 1:30 left in the game. For Tom Brady, that’s about equivalent to all day. The Patriots’ offense drove down into field goal range with seven seconds left. Then it was time for the kick that started the Patriots dynasty. Adam Vinatieri kicked the ball throw the uprights, giving the Patriots a 20-17 Super Bowl XXXVI win.
Take a look back at these Super Bowl XXXVI moments in this short recap video.
As you can see from the short list, there are several moments from Super Bowl XXXVI we can all talk about, as this was the first of five Super Bowls Brady and Belichick have won together. Could this Sunday be the start of a new dynasty with McVay and Goff? Or will we see the Patriots add their sixth Super Bowl title with Brady and Belichick?