Super Bowl XXXIX

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Super Bowl XXXIX was the 2005 championship game of the National Football League, the major professional league of American football in the United States. The game was played on Sunday, February 6, 2005 in Jacksonville, Florida at ALLTEL Stadium, home of the Jacksonville Jaguars. The AFC Champion New England Patriots defeated the NFC Champion Philadelphia Eagles, 24-21, to become the first team since the 1997-1998 Denver Broncos to repeat as Super Bowl Champions. New England also became the second team after the Dallas Cowboys to win three Super Bowls in four years. Patriots receiver Deion Branch, who tied the Super Bowl record with 11 catches, was named the Super Bowl's Most Valuable Player. Many commentators and fans believe that this win established the Patriots as the first NFL dynasty of the 21st century.



The game was broadcast in the U.S. by Fox with Joe Buck handling the play-by-play duties and color commentators Cris Collinsworth and Troy Aikman in the broadcast booth. James Brown hosted all the events with help from his fellow FOX NFL Sunday cast members Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long and Jimmy Johnson.


Before the game, Alicia Keys sang "America the Beautiful," paying tribute to Ray Charles, who died in June 2004. The combined choirs of the U.S. Naval Academy, the U.S. Air Force Academy, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and West Point sang the national anthem, which the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets played at the same time. It had been more than 30 years since all four service academies sang together--the last time was at the second inauguration of President Richard Nixon in 1973.

In a move which proved somewhat controversial after the broadcast, the traditional military missing-man formation fly-by was this year performed by a pair of F/A-18 Super Hornets, from VFA-106 at NAS Oceana and a pair of the Air Force's newest fighters, the F/A-22 Raptor, flying from Tyndall AFB, the training base for the Raptor. The aircraft is the subject of many attacks for its great expense.

The earlier military fly-by, during the veterans' salute, was conducted by 2 T-6 Texan trainers, and a B-25 bomber.


Sir Paul McCartney performed during the halftime show; his selection by the NFL, the show's producers, Don Mischer Productions and the show's sponsor, Ameriquest Mortgage, was considered to be a "safe" choice, as it avoided the possibility for an incident similar to that which sparked the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy the previous year. Unlike in many previous years, he was the only performer in the entire halftime show. McCartney's set consisted of the Beatles songs "Drive My Car", "Get Back", and "Hey Jude", as well as "Live and Let Die" from his career with Wings.


Taking the concept a step further, for the first time, a theme was tied to the event: Building Bridges, as symbolized by the theme logo, represented by the Main Street Bridge, one of the seven bridges that crosses over the St. Johns River in the host city, and according to the League, symbolized the bridging of a nation under the NFL football umbrella. The theme was also used by Jacksonville-area nonprofit Fresh Ministries in a major event entitled "Bridges of Peace," featuring city officials asking the people to unite for the Super Bowl and heal the city's troubled racial past.

Presidential appearances

Missing image
Former U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush appeared on the field before the game.

Former Presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton appeared in support of their bipartisan effort to raise money for relief of the December 26, 2004 tsunami in southeast Asia through the USA Freedom Corps, an action which former President Bush described as "transcending politics."

The game

For the first time in Super Bowl history, the game was tied going into the fourth quarter. The contest was also tied after the end of the first and second quarters, the first time in Super Bowl history that has ever been done.

After each team punted twice, the Eagles drove the ball to the Patriots' 19-yard line. But then quarterback Donovan McNabb's pass was intercepted by Patriots safety Rodney Harrison. Still, both teams ended up being shutout in the first quarter.

The Eagles took the lead early in the second quarter with McNabb's touchdown pass to receiver L. J. Smith. Then on their next drive, the Patriots moved to the Eagles 4-yard line. But quarterback Tom Brady fumbled and Philadelphia recovered it. After forcing the Eagles to punt again, New England tied the score 7-7 with 1:16 left in the first half when Brady found receiver David Givens for 4 yards.

New England then took the opening kickoff of the second half and marched 69 yards in 9 plays to take the lead 14-7 with Brady's 2-yard pass to Mike Vrabel. The Eagles tied the game later with 3:39 left in the third period on McNabb's pass to running back Brian Westbrook for 10 yards.

Early in the fourth quarter, running back Corey Dillon ran 2-yards for a touchdown to give New England the lead again. Then after forcing another Eagles punt, the Patriots then added a field goal with 8:43 left in the game to increase the score 24-14.

Philadelphia finally scored a touchdown with 1:55 remaining in the game with receiver Greg Lewis' 30-yard catch to cut the Patriots' lead 24-21. The drive took 3:52 off the clock and many sports writers later criticised the Eagles for not immediately going to a No-huddle offense. (Two days after the game, some Eagles players revealed that McNabb was so sick that he had trouble calling the plays).

The Eagles then failed to recover the onside kick. The Patriots then played it safe by running the ball and forcing Philadelphia to use all of its timeouts. After a punt, the Eagles got the ball back at their own 4-yard line with 46 seconds remaining in the game. But Harrison intercepted another pass to seal the victory.

New England forced three interceptions, sacked McNabb four times, and only allowed 45 rushing yards.

Scoring Summary

  • PHI - L.Smith 6 yd. pass from D.McNabb (D.Akers kick)
  • NE - D.Givens 4 yd. pass from T.Brady (A.Vinatieri kick)
  • NE - M.Vrabel 2 yd. pass from T.Brady (A.Vinatieri kick)
  • PHI - B.Westbrook 10 yd. pass from D.McNabb (D.Akers kick
  • NE - C.Dillon 2 yd. run (A.Vinatieri kick)
  • NE - A.Vinatieri 22 yd. Field Goal
  • PHI - G.Lewis 30 yd. pass from D.McNabb (D.Akers kick)


As usual, the television coverage of this year's Super Bowl was the showcase for the most expensive commercials in television -- both to produce, and to buy airtime (at the rate of $2.4 million US for 30 seconds).

One ad that drew the ire of many — including the NFL — was for the internet domain provider, which tweaked the controversial halftime of last year's game with a mock censorship hearing featuring a comely woman (played by part-time WWE RAW diva Candice Mitchell) having a "wardrobe malfunction". Fox pulled the second airing of the ad, scheduled for the two-minute warning of the fourth quarter, along with a five-second plug, and it was replaced with a promo for the popular cartoon series The Simpsons. The Scottsdale, Arizona-based World Wide Web domain registration company got a refund on the second ad.

Another popular ad was made by the NFL. It featured players who weren't in the Super Bowl, headlined by Pittsburgh Steelers rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger being at a beach resort, despressed he didn't make it in. Legendary quarterback Joe Montana comforted Roethlisberger, and soon both Montana and Roethlisberger joined many other players in different locations in an off-key, yet rousing edition of "Tomorrow" from the musical Annie. The commercial ended with the tagline, "Tomorrow, we're all undefeated again."

A complete list of the ads shown in Super Bowl XXXIX as well as links to news coverage are at (; iFilm has the actual commercials at its site (


  • According to Las Vegas oddsmakers, the Patriots were seven-point favorites entering the game. As the Patriots only won by 3 points, the Patriots failed to cover this spread.
  • The over-under bet was set at 46.0 by most casinos. As the total combined score of the two teams was 45 points, the under bet won.
  • The money line was set at roughly +245 for Philadelphia and -265 for New England.


Missing image
Arch-conservative Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum lost a friendly football bet to arch-liberal Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy. Here Santorum wears a Patriots hat and presents Kennedy and his staff with Philly cheesesteaks.

See also

External links

NFL Super Bowls

I 1967 | II 1968 | III 1969 | IV 1970 | V 1971 | VI 1972 | VII 1973 | VIII 1974 | IX 1975 | X 1976

XI 1977 | XII 1978 | XIII 1979 | XIV 1980 | XV 1981 | XVI 1982 | XVII 1983 | XVIII 1984 | XIX 1985 | XX 1986

XXI 1987 | XXII 1988 | XXIII 1989 | XXIV 1990 | XXV 1991 | XXVI 1992 | XXVII 1993 | XXVIII 1994 | XXIX 1995 | XXX 1996

XXXI 1997 | XXXII 1998 | XXXIII 1999 | XXXIV 2000 | XXXV 2001 | XXXVI 2002 | XXXVII 2003 | XXXVIII 2004 | XXXIX 2005 | XL 2006

XLI 2007 | XLII 2008 | XLIII 2009 | XLIV 2010

es:Super Bowl XXXIX fr:Super Bowl XXXIX


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