- Super Bowl XIV
visitor_qtr1 = 7
visitor_qtr2 = 6
visitor_qtr3 = 6
visitor_qtr4 = 0
home_qtr1 = 3
home_qtr2 = 7
home_qtr3 = 7
home_qtr4 = 14
date = January 20, 1980
stadium = Rose Bowl Stadium
city = Pasadena, California
attendance = 103,985 [The Super Bowl was attended by a record 103,985 spectators, which still stands as a record (through
Super Bowl XLII). The last time that the Rose Bowl held an NFL game was Super Bowl XXVII, and will never host a Super Bowl again as long as the league maintains its current policy that only a home stadium of an NFL team may host the championship game. And so far, no NFL stadium currently comes close to a capacity of 100,000 people and the fact that the Los Angeles area has not had an NFL team since 1995. Super Bowl XLV, which will be held in the Dallas Cowboysnew stadium in Arlington, Texas, will be able to seat more than 100,000 fans, presenting the next opportunity to break the attendance record.]
odds = Steelers by 11 1/2
Terry Bradshaw, Quarterback
Up with Peoplepresents "A Salute to the Big Band Era"
Pat Summeralland Tom Brookshier
rating = 46.3
share = 67
commercial = $222,000
last = XIII
next = XV
Super Bowl XIV was an
American footballgame played on January 20, 1980 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Californiato decide the National Football League(NFL) champion following the 1979 regular season. Aided by two touchdowns in the fourth quarter, the American Football Conference(AFC) champion Pittsburgh Steelers(15-4) defeated the National Football Conference(NFC) champion Los Angeles Rams(11-8), 31–19, to win their fourth Super Bowlin team history. The Rams would not appear in the Super Bowl again until after they moved to St. Louis in 1995. They would appear in Super Bowl XXXIVin 1999 and Super Bowl XXXVIin 2001.
Despite throwing three interceptions, Steelers
quarterback Terry Bradshawwas named the game's MVP by completing 14 of 21 passes for 309 yards and two touchdowns. [Bradshaw became the second person to win two Super Bowl MVP awards and the second to win them back-to-back (both after Bart Starrin Super Bowls I and II). Bradshaw is also currently the only quarterback to throw for more the 300 yards in consecutive Super Bowls. Joe Montanaand Kurt Warnerwould eventually tie Bradshaw but never in back-to-back championship games. Bradshaw's three interceptions were the most ever by a quarterback who won the Super Bowl MVP award. He is currently the only quarterback to win Super Bowl MVP honors despite throwing more interceptions then touchdown passes.]
The Steelers' fans were known for their "
Terrible Towel" tradition, in which most fans would bring yellow towels (frequently printed with black lettering to signify the team's colors) to Steelers games and wave them around madly in a circle above their heads as a show of support. Many Terrible Towels were in evidence at the Rose Bowl during this Super Bowl, although the game was being played just 18 miles from the Rams' home stadium, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
The Steelers won the
AFC Centralwith a 12-4 regular season record, and advanced to their second consecutive Super Bowl and their fourth appearance in the last 6 seasons. Pittsburgh appeared to be even better than what they were in their 3 previous Super Bowl victories. They led the league with 6,258 yards in total offense, an average of 391 yards per game and just 31 yards short of an NFL record. The team also led the league in scoring with 412 points.
Terry Bradshawhad another fine season as the leader of the Steelers offense, throwing for 3,724 yards and 26 touchdowns during the regular season (but he did throw 25 interceptions). Wide receiver John Stallworthwas his top target with 70 receptions for 1,183 yards and 8 touchdowns, while wide receiver Lynn Swanncaught 41 passes for 808 yards, an average of 19.7 yards per catch. Steelers starting tight end Bennie Cunningham, who missed most of the previous season due to injuries, was also a big contributor with 36 receptions for 512 yards.
Franco Harriswas the Steelers leading rusher for the 8th consecutive season with 1,186 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also recorded his 7th consecutive season with more than 1,000 yards, tying an NFL record set by Jim Brown. Harris also had his best year as a receiver out of the backfield, catching a career high 36 passes for a career high 291 yards and another touchdown. Fullback Rocky Bleieralso had another superb season, providing Harris with excellent blocking while also contributing 711 combined rushing and receiving yards. And Running back Sidney Thorntonalso emerged as a big threat with 816 total yards and averaging 5 yards per carry. Pittsburgh also had a solid offensive line, led by center Mike Webster.
The Steelers "Steel Curtain" defense finished the regular season as the top rated defense in the AFC, limiting opponents to only 4,621 offensive yards. Up front, linemen Joe Greene and
L.C. Greenwoodterrorized opposing quarterbacks and rushers. And linebackers Jack Lambert and Jack Hamexcelled at run stopping and pass coverage, combining for 8 interceptions. The Steelers also had a fine secondary, lead by defensive backs Mel Blount, who recorded 3 interceptions, and Donnie Shell, who had 5.
Los Angeles Rams
Adversity hovered over the Rams long before the season began. During the off-season, owner
Carroll Rosenbloomdrowned, and a power struggle ensued between Carroll's son, Steve Rosenbloom, and his second wife, Georgia Frontiere. Georgia eventually gained control of the team and fired her stepson. Prior to Carroll Rosenbloom's death, the Rams had already announced their intentions to leave the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and move to Anaheim Stadium in Orange County for the 1980 season.
The Rams barely outscored their opponents in total points, 323 to 309, and finished the regular season with a 9-7 record, the worst ever by a team who advanced to the Super Bowl. The team was plagued with injuries during the regular season, including the loss of their starting quarterback
Pat Haden. His replacement, Vince Ferragamo, completed less than 50 percent of his passes and threw twice as many interceptions (10) as touchdowns (5). But he still led the Rams to victory in 6 of their last 7 games.
The Rams gained 6,006 total yards of offense during the regular season, ranking second in the league. The team's main offensive weapon was running back
Wendell Tyler, who rushed for 1,109 yards, caught 32 passes for 308 yards, and scored 10 touchdowns. Tyler's rushing yards came off just 218 rushing attempts, giving him a league leading 5.1 yards per carry average. Fullback Cullen Bryantprovided Tyler with excellent blocking while also gaining 846 total yards and scoring 5 touchdowns. Wide receiver Preston Dennardwas the team's main deep threat, catching 43 passes for 766 yards and 4 touchdowns. The offensive line, led by tackle Doug France, Jackie Slaterand guard Dennis Harrah, paved the Rams running attack to 4th in the NFC during the season despite injuries. They also gave up only 29 sacks.
But the Rams main strength was their defense which featured defensive end
Jack Youngblood, who made the Pro Bowl for the 7th year in a row and was playing with a broken leg, and lightning-quick Fred Dryeron the opposite end. Behind them, the Rams had 2 outstanding linebackers: Jack "Hacksaw" Reynolds, and Jim Youngblood(no relation to Jack), who had recorded 5 interceptions and returned 2 for touchdowns. The Rams also had a solid secondary, led by free safety Nolan Cromwellwho also grabbed 5 interceptions. This defensive unit allowed an NFL record negative 7 yards total offense in a 24-0 shutout of the Seahawks during the season.
In the playoffs, the Rams avenged the previous year's NFC Championship Game shutout loss to the
Dallas Cowboysby beating them 21-19. Then they beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneersin the NFC Championship Game, 9-0, scoring only three field goals.
Meanwhile, the Steelers went on to defeat the
Miami Dolphins, 34-14, and the Houston Oilers, 27-13, in the playoffs. During those two playoff games, the Pittsburgh defense limited running backs Larry Csonkaand Earl Campbell, respectively, to a combined total of only 35 rushing yards. Campbell was the league's rushing leader during the regular season with 1,697 yards, but could only gain 15 yards against the Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.
uper Bowl pregame news and notes
Pittsburgh was heavily favored to win Super Bowl XIV and become the first team to win 4 Super Bowls. Most people did not think that the Rams even belonged on the same field with the Steelers. In fact,
Sports Illustratedhad called the NFC Championship Game a game for losers, played by losers. One sports writer even suggested that Bradshaw throw left-handed and the Rams should be allowed to play with 12 men on the field to make the Super Bowl more competitive.
However, Pittsburgh themselves were not taking their opponents lightly. In their previous meetings, the Rams held a 12-1-2 all-time record over the Steelers, including wins in 1971, 1975, and 1978.
Television and entertainment
CBS televised the game in the
United Stateswith play-by-play announcer Pat Summeralland color commentator Tom Brookshier. One of the guest analysts for the network's studio pregame show was former Oakland Raiders coach John Madden; he so impressed CBS executives that he replaced Brookshier as lead game analyst the following season.
Los Angeles Unified School DistrictAll-City Band played during the pregame ceremonies. Later, actress and singer Cheryl Laddperformed the national anthem. The coin toss ceremony featured longtime Steelers owner Art Rooney.
The performance event group
Up with Peopleperformed during the halftime show titled "A Salute to the Big Band Era".
Coca-Colacommercial in which Mean Joe Greenegives a boy his game jersey aired during CBS' telecast of the game. However, it is technically not viewed as a Super Bowl ad since it actually debuted on October 1, 1979, not during the day of the game. [ [http://espn.go.com/page2/s/list/sbcommercials.html ESPN.com - Page2 - Best Super Bowl commercials ] ] [ [http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/ccmphtml/colahist.html Coca-Cola Television Advertisements:The D'Arcy Era ] ]
The city of Pittsburgh celebrated its third major pro championship in 13 months. The Steelers had also won the previous year's Super Bowl, and the city's
Major League Baseballteam, the Pirates, had won the World Series three months before this Super Bowl game. Ten days after the Steelers' Super Bowl victory, the city's National Hockey Leagueteam, the Pittsburgh Penguins, changed its uniform colors to match the black and gold scheme of the Pirates and Steelers.
Despite being the underdogs, the Rams managed to hang on to a 13-10 lead at halftime, and a 19-17 lead at the beginning of the fourth quarter. But the Steelers held the Rams scoreless in the fourth quarter and scored two touchdowns for the win. Despite the game's uneven matchup and a final score reflecting disparity between the teams, this game is regarded by some as one of the most competitive games in Super Bowl history. Overall, the lead changed 7 times between both teams, a Super Bowl record; the Rams took the lead 3 times while the Steelers took it 4 times.
The Rams took the opening kickoff, surprising fans with an unusual lateral during the return that earned an extra two yards. The Steel Curtain, however, managed to force a three-and-out. Then on the Steelers' 7th play of their first possession, quarterback
Terry Bradshawcompleted a 32-yard pass to running back Franco Harristo reach the Los Angeles 26-yard line. But a third down pass fell incomplete, forcing Pittsburgh to settle for a 41-yard field goal from rookie kicker Matt Bahr.
Bahr's ensuing kickoff was very short, giving the Rams great field position at their 41-yard line. On the first play of the drive, Los Angeles running back
Wendell Tylercaught a 6-yard pass from Vince Ferragamo. Then on the next play, Tyler took a handoff, ran left, broke some tackles, and ran 39 yards to the Steelers 14-yard line before he was finally dragged down by Pittsburgh defensive back Donnie Shell, the longest run against the Steelers all season. 6 plays later, fullback Cullen Bryantscored on a 1-yard touchdown run to give the Rams a 7-3 lead.
But the lead did not last long. Pittsburgh defensive back Larry Anderson returned the ensuing kickoff 45 yards to his own 47-yard line, and then the Steelers marched 53 yards in 9 plays using every offensive weapon in their arsenal. First, Harris ran for 12 yards, fullback
Rocky Bleierran for 1, then tight end Bennie Cunninghamcaught a pass for 8. Bleier ran again for 2, followed by Bradshaw's 18-yard completion to receiver Lynn Swannon the last play of the first quarter. The second period opened with Bradshaw's 13-yard completion to Cunningham to reach the Los Angeles 5-yard line, and then Harris ran through the middle to the 4. Wide receiver John Stallworthwas then stopped at the 1-yard line, but then Harris ran to the right untouched and scored a touchdown on the next play, giving the Steelers a 10-7 lead.
But like the Rams' previous lead, the Steelers lead also turned out to be short-lived. Aided by a 20-yard pass interference penalty against Shell, Los Angeles advanced 67 yards in 10 plays to score on 31-yard field goal from kicker
Frank Corralto tie the game. Anderson gave the Steelers great field position after returning the ensuing kickoff 38 yards to the Pittsburgh 46-yard line, but the Steelers could not move the ball and had to punt. The Rams were also forced to punt on their next possession after only gaining 6-yards. But on the first play of the Steelers' next drive, Los Angeles defensive back Dave Elmendorfintercepted a pass from Bradshaw and returned it 10 yards to Pittsburgh's 39-yard line.
On the first 2 plays after the turnover, Ferragamo was sacked for a 10-yard loss and threw an incomplete pass. But he managed to overcome the situation with a 12-yard completion to Bryant on third down and a 10-yard completion to receiver
Billy Waddyon 4th down and 8. Ferragamo's next pass was complete to tight end Terry Nelson for a first down at the 13-yard line, but after throwing 2 incompletions, Pittsburgh lineman John Banaszaksacked Ferragamo on third down. However, Corral kicked a 45-yard field goal to give the Rams a 13-10 halftime lead.
Many observers were surprised that the heavily favored Steelers trailed at the end of the half. "How can you mess up this way?", Steelers assistant coach
Woody Widenhoferasked his team at halftime, "Didn't we go over these things a dozen times? You guys are standing out there like statues." [ [http://www.steelergridiron.com/history/historyof14.html History of Steelers-Super Bowl xiv ] ]
Anderson once again gave the Steelers great starting field position, returning the opening kickoff of the second half 37 yards to the Pittsburgh 39-yard line. The Steelers lulled the Rams defense by running the ball on three consecutive plays of the drive, and then Bradshaw burned them with a 47-yard touchdown completion to Swann, who made a leaping catch at the Los Angeles' 2-yard line and tumbled into the end zone, to give Pittsburgh a 17-13 lead.
But they didn't hold it. After starting the ensuing drive with 2 running plays, Ferragamo completed a 50-yard pass to Waddy. Then on the next play, Ferragamo handed the ball off to running back
Lawrence McCutcheonwho started to run to the right. The Steelers defense came up to tackle him behind the line of scrimmage, only to watch him throw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Ron Smith. Corral missed the extra point attempt, but the Rams had retaken the lead, 19-17.
The Steelers had some success advancing into Rams territory on their next 2 possessions only to see the Rams intercept the ball both times. First, Rams free safety Eddie Brown stopped the ensuing Steelers drive with an interception. Then after a punt, Pittsburgh drove all the way to the Rams 16-yard line, but Los Angeles defensive back
Rod Perryintercepted a pass intended for Stallworth. Thus, the third quarter ended with the Rams still in the lead, 19-17, seemingly in control of the game. Worse yet, Pittsburgh lost Lynn Swann to injury.
With 12:59 left in the game, Rams punter Ken Clark's 59-yard punt planted Pittsburgh back on their own 25-yard line. Then faced with 3rd down and 8, Bradshaw took the snap, faked a handoff, and then threw a pass to Stallworth, who was running a streak pattern down the middle of the field. Stallworth caught the ball without breaking stride and took it all the way to the end zone for a 73-yard go-ahead touchdown to make the score 24-19 for the Steelers. The NFL Films highlight film notes that safety Eddie Brown was supposed to help Rod Perry in covering Stallworth, but for some reason Brown ignored the Steeler receiver.
After an exchange of punts, the Rams mounted one final, spirited drive to regain the lead. Ferragamo smartly moved the Rams down the field, completing 3 or 4 passes around runs by Tyler. His 15-yard completion to
Billy Waddyon 3rd and 13 moved the Rams to the Pittsburgh 32-yard line with just under 6 minutes remaining. However, on the following play, Ferragamo made his first, and only mistake of the game. Despite the fact that Waddy had broken free down the right side of the field, Ferragamo had zeroed in on Preston Dennarddown the middle of the field, but he didn't notice Pittsburgh linebacker Jack Lambert playing behind Dennard. As Ferragamo released the ball, Lambert jumped in front of Dennard and intercepted the pass with 5:24 remaining, short-circuiting Los Angeles' drive and for all intents and purposes clinching the game for the Steelers.
When faced with a 3rd down and 7 on their ensuing drive, Bradshaw once again made a crucial long pass completion to Stallworth, this time a 45-yard reception to the Rams 22-yard line. Two plays later, a pass interference penalty on Los Angeles cornerback
Pat Thomasin the end zone gave the Steelers a first down at the 1-yard line. The Rams managed to keep Bleier and Harris out of the end zone for 2 plays, but Harris then scored on a third down, 1-yard touchdown run to give the Steelers a 31-19 lead and put the game away. The Rams responded by driving to Pittsburgh's 37-yard line, but ended up turning over the ball on downs with 39 seconds left in the game, and the Steelers ran out the clock for the win.
This was the third time in Super Bowl history that a team overcame a deficit entering the fourth quarter to win the game. The Baltimore Colts entered the final quarter down 13-6 against Dallas in
Super Bowl Vand won the game 16-13. The Pittsburgh Steelersstarted the final period against Dallas in Super Bowl Xdown 10-7 and eventually won the game 21-17. The lead had changed hands seven times, a Super Bowl record to this day. Franco Harris, Lynn Swann, and John Stallworth became the fourth, fifth and sixth players to score touchdowns in back-to-back Super Bowls, respectively.
Ferragamo finished the game with 15 out of 25 completions for 212 yards, with 1 interception. Tyler was the top rusher of the game with 60 yards, and caught 2 passes for 20 yards. Waddy was the Rams leading receiver with 3 catches for 75 yards. Harris led the Steelers in rushing with 44 yards and 2 touchdowns, while also catching 3 passes for 66 yards. Stallworth was the top receiver of the game with 3 receptions for 121 yards and a touchdown, an average of 40.3 yards per catch. Swann had 5 catches for 79 yards and a touchdown. Larry Anderson set a Super Bowl record with 162 yards from his 5 kickoff returns.
*PIT - FG: Matt Bahr 41 yards 3-0 PIT
*LA - TD: Cullen Bryant 1 yard run (Frank Corral kick) 7-3 LA
*PIT - TD: Franco Harris 1 yard run (Matt Bahr kick) 10-7 PIT
*LA - FG: Frank Corral 31 yards 10-10 tie
*LA - FG: Frank Corral 45 yards 13-10 LA
*PIT - TD: Lynn Swann 47 yard pass from Terry Bradshaw (Matt Bahr kick) 17-13 PIT
*LA - TD: Ron Smith 24 yard pass from Lawrence McCutcheon (kick failed) 19-17 LA
*PIT - TD: John Stallworth 73 yard pass from Terry Bradshaw (Matt Bahr kick) 24-19 PIT
*PIT - TD: Franco Harris 1 yard run (Matt Bahr kick) 31-19 PIT
Pittsburgh Los Angeles OFFENSE
John Stallworth82 WR Billy Waddy80 Jon Kolb55 LT Doug France77 Sam Davis57 LG Kent Hill72 Mike Webster52 C Rich Saul61 Gerry Mullins72 RG Dennis Harrah60 Larry Brown79 RT Jackie Slater78 Bennie Cunningham89 TE Terry Nelson83 Lynn Swann88 WR Preston Dennard88 Terry Bradshaw12 QB Vince Ferragamo15 Rocky Bleier20 FB Cullen Bryant32 Franco Harris32 RB Wendell Tyler26
L.C. Greenwood68 LE Jack Youngblood85 Joe Greene 75 LT Mike Fanning79 Gary Dunn67 RT Larry Brooks90 John Banaszak76 RE Fred Dryer89 Robin Cole56 LLB Bob Brudzinski59 Jack Lambert58 MLB Jack Reynolds64 Dennis Winston53 RLB Jim Youngblood53 Ron Johnson29 LCB Pat Thomas27 Mel Blount47 RCB Rod Perry49 Donnie Shell31 SS Dave Elmendorf42 J.T. Thomas24 FS Nolan Cromwell21
*Line Judge: Bob Beeks
*Field Judge: Charley Musser
*Side Judge: Ben Tompkins
*67 degrees, sunny
1979 NFL season
NFL playoffs, 1979-80
* [http://www.superbowl.com/ Super Bowl official website]
*cite book | title=2006 NFL Record and Fact Book | publisher=Time Inc. Home Entertainment | id=ISBN 1-933405-32-5
*cite book | title=Total Football II: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League | publisher=
Harper Collins| id=ISBN 1-933405-32-5
*cite book | title=The Official NFL Encyclopedia Pro Football | publisher=NAL Books | id=ISBN 0-453-00431-8
*cite book | title=The Sporting News Complete Super Bowl Book 1995 | id=ISBN 0-89204-523-X
* http://www.pro-football-reference.com - Large online database of NFL data and statistics
* [http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/super/superbowl-plays.htm Super Bowl play-by-plays] from
USA Today(Last accessed September 28, 2005)
* [http://www.sportsnetwork.com/default.asp?c=sportsnetwork&page=nfl/superbowl/2005/superbowl-alltime-odds.htm All-Time Super Bowl Odds] from The Sports Network (Last accessed October 16, 2005)
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