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Every year, the Super Bowl is one of the most widely watched American television shows, and every year it seems there’s something to talk about. In recent years, halftime scandals like Janet Jackson’s nip slip, Madonna’s lip syncing, and M.I.A.’s rude gesture have stolen the show–and face it, some people just watch for the commercials–but sometimes, the football players are the actual stars of the game. Of the most memorable and exciting Super Bowl moments, these are the ones people are still talking about.
5 The Touchdown That Made the Refrigerator Famous
Everybody loves an underdog, especially when that underdog is an unknown rookie the size of a refrigerator–with an awesome nickname. William “The Refrigerator” Perry became famous in Super Bowl XX when he busted through the Patriots’ line and scored a touchdown from the 1-yard line–and ensuring the Bears’ 46-10 win. At that time, Walter Payton was the team’s main offensive weapon and lead rusher, yet he didn’t score a single touchdown during the game, making Perry’s touchdown even more memorable by comparison.
4 Tackle on the 1-Yard Line
Almost everyone watching Super Bowl XXXIV must have wondered at some point how the St. Louis Rams got there to face the Tennessee Titans. But it looked like the Rams might actually win–and the Rams had never taken home the Super Bowl trophy before. But then in the last few minutes of the game, the Titans completed nine consecutive passes and Kevin Dyson was approaching the end zone with what could have been a touchdown to tie the game when out of nowhere Rams linebacker Mike Jones tackled Dyson on the 1-yard line right as the clock ran out. Jones’s tackle stopped the Titans comeback at the last possible moment and made history by securing the Rams’ first Super Bowl win.
3 Explosive 99-Yard Run
Super Bowl XXXI was yet another game where someone shut down the New England Patriots. An unbelievable return by Desmond Howard of the Green Bay Packers helped seal a victory over the Pats. Howard caught a kickoff ball on the 1-yard line and ran a jaw-dropping 99-yard return, the longest return seen in any Super Bowl at that time. The Patriots were winning 28 to 21, but Howard’s explosive run ensured a win for his team, giving the Packers their first Super Bowl trophy in 29 years. Howard was also the first special teamer to be named MVP, a memorable moment in itself.
2 One-Handed Catch
Those who don’t say that Santonio Holmes’ Super Bowl catch was the most amazing of all time often point to David Tyree’s helmet-aided catch from the year before as the best they’ve seen. The New York Giants faced the New England Patriots that year. Tyree caught the ball with one hand, a feat rarely seen in the NFL. Fans consider that one-handed catch the reason the Giants won Super Bowl XLII, but fans shouldn’t forget that Tyree’s reception earlier in the game–which led to a touchdown–provided the Giants with a lead over the Patriots in the first place.
1 Best Catch
Arguably the best catch in Super Bowl history was when Santonio Holmes of the Pittsburg Steelers made the game-winning catch in the very corner of the end zone during Super Bowl XLIII. Many fans remember Holmes boasting earlier that he’d be great, and he delivered on that promise. His amazing catch was the fourth catch in a row that Holmes had completed, getting his team 73 yards toward the end zone. His toe-dragging catch came when there was only 35 seconds left in the quarter. The catch ensured victory for the Steelers over the Arizona Cardinals and earned Holmes the coveted MVP spot.