Countdown of the 20 Greatest Super Bowl’s: #6 Super Bowl XXIII
#6 Super Bowl XXIII: San Francisco 49ers vs. Cincinnati Bengals
San Francisco 49ers – 20
Cincinnati Bengals – 16
Joe Robbie Stadium
January 22, 1989
MVP: Jerry Rice, WR, San Francisco
Key Play: Lewis Billups dropped a potential interception in the end zone. Montana would then throw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Jerry Rice to tie the game 13-13.
Super Bowl XXIII will go down as one of the most well played Super Bowl’s in NFL history. The game was close from start to finish, and resulted in one of the greatest final drive’s in NFL history.
Super Bowl XXIII was the second meeting in the Super Bowl for the San Francisco 49ers and Cincinnati Bengals. Led by hall-of-fame head coach Bill Walsh, the 49ers were trying for their franchises third Super Bowl in the 1980’s.
The game may not have been an offensive showing, but it was close. Going into halftime the score was tied 3-3.
With the game tied 6-6, Stanford Jennings returned a kickoff 93 yards for the touchdown, to give the Bengals a 13-6 lead. However, the 49ers would respond on the next drive with a Joe Montana 14-yard touchdown pass to Jerry Rice to tie the game 13-13.
The Bengals would take the lead 16-13 on a 40-yard field goal with just over three minutes left in the game. This led to a historic comeback by Joe Montana and the 49ers.
On the final drive, Montana led the 49ers 92 yards downfield and connected with John Taylor on a 10-yard touchdown pass to give the 49ers the magical win. 49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice ended up with 11 catches for a Super Bowl record 215 yards and the Super Bowl MVP.
In 2006, NFL.com ranked Super Bowl XXIII the top Super Bowl of all time. We don’t have it quite that high, but it defenitely deserves to be considered one of the greatest.