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STATS INC: Super Bowl XXXVII story lines

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Matchup notes

  • This is the third Super Bowl to take place in San Diego. Denver defeated Green Bay, 31-24, to win Super Bowl XXXII in 1998, while Washington defeated Denver, 42-10, to win Super Bowl XXII in 1988.

  • The AFC has won the last two and four of the last five Super Bowls. The last time the AFC won three straight Super Bowls was from 1979-81 (SB XIII-XV). The won the third of that string in 1981 (SB XV).

  • The and Bucs have met only five times, with Oakland winning four of these five meetings.

  • Oakland had the NFL's No. 1 overall offense and the No. 1 pass offense, while Tampa had the No. 1 overall defense and No. 1 pass defense. The No. 1 offense and No. 1 defense have never faced off in a Super Bowl.

  • The are 13-0 this season when scoring over 21 points, while Tampa Bay is 10-0 when scoring 21 or more.

  • Two of the worst rushing teams in Super Bowl history will square off. Tampa averaged just 97.3 rushing yards per game this season, giving them the third worst yards per game average of any Super Bowl contender. Oakland averaged just 110.1 rush yards per game this season, giving them the 6th worst among Super Bowl participants.

  • Both starting quarterbacks in this game started their career with the Minnesota . Oakland's was drafted by the in 1987, but his rights were traded to the . He spent six years in Minnesota. Johnson was drafted by the in 1992 and spent the first seven years of his career there.

  • The starting four wide receivers in this game, , , and , have a combined for 3,672 career receptions, for 51,296 yards and 378 receiving touchdowns.

  • No team has ever won a Super Bowl with a starting quarterback wearing jersey No. 14, the number that Tampa QB wears. Starting quarterbacks wearing jersey No. 12, the number that Oakland QB wears, have won the Super Bowl 11 times.

Tampa Bay notes

  • Tampa Bay is in its first Super Bowl. Of the last five teams making their first Super Bowl appearance four have lost (Buffalo in SB XXV, San Diego in SB XXIX, Atlanta in SB XXXIII, and Tennessee in SB XXXIV). The only team to win was the Baltimore in SB XXXV over the New York .

  • Tampa head coach Jon Gruden will face his former team for the first time since he was basically "traded" to Tampa Bay for two first-rounders, two second-rounders and $8 million. Of the 36 previous teams to win the Super Bowl, only six had coaches who were coaching their second NFL team. The other 30 were in their first NFL coaching stint.

  • The Bucs are just 2-18 all-time playing in California, but one of those two wins came in San Diego in 1996.

  • Tampa has just four players with prior Super Bowl experience (Lomas Brown, , and with the in SBXXXV in 2001, and with New England in SB XXXI in 1997). None of those four players won a Super Bowl.

  • The Bucs have been one of the NFL's worst franchises since their inception, when the went 0-14 in 1976, then lost the first 12 games the next season. At one point, from 1983-96, the Bucs had no winning seasons and lost at least 10 games in 13 of 14 years.

  • The Bucs have scored 58 points in their two playoff games this season, after scoring just 100 points in their first 10 postseason games.

  • Tampa is 7-0 this season when rushing for 100+ yards (including playoffs), and has won its last nine games (including playoffs) in which it amassed over 300 yards of total offense.

  • Tampa has allowed just 16 points over the past three games, and hasn't allowed a point in the second half over the past four games.

  • Tampa's secondary has held , , , , (twice), , , and to one touchdown reception combined (by Horn). Those eight receivers caught 63 touchdown passes this season.

  • The Bucs have 12 takeaways in their last three games, and have at least one takeaway in 45 consecutive games (including playoffs). Tampa also has at least one sack in 52 consecutive games (including playoffs).

  • Bucs' QB lead the NFC in passing with a 92.9 rating, and has won his last five starts vs. AFC opponents.

  • Tampa's running game leaves a lot to be desired, but Oakland has allowed 120 and 138 yards rushing in its first two playoff games. The two Mikes, Pittman and Alstott, may be able to finally have success running the ball, and may help keep the Raider offense off the field.

  • Bucs' safety and RB are both San Diego natives.

Oakland notes

  • The will be making their 5th Super Bowl appearance, and their first since 1984. They have won their last three Super Bowls (XI vs. Minnesota, XV vs. Philadelphia, XVIII vs. Washington), with their only loss coming in Super Bowl II vs. Green Bay.

  • Oakland head coach Bill Callahan will look to become the third head coach to win a Super Bowl in his first year as an NFL head coach, joining Baltimore's Don McCafferty (SB V) and San Francisco's George Seifert (SB XXIV). He is the fourth first year head coach in Super Bowl history with McCafferty, Seifert and Denver's Red Miller (Super Bowl XII).

  • Oakland has won four in a row and nine of its last 10 games, following its four-game losing streak. No team with a four-game losing streak during the regular season has ever won a Super Bowl.

  • The are 15-6 in their last 21 games at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, including wins in six of their last seven visits there.

  • Oakland is 5-1 against teams with top 10 defenses this season, averaging 33.7 points per game, and racking up an average of 369.5 yards off offense in those games.

  • The are 10-0 this season when allowing less than 100 yards rushing, but have allowed an average of 129 rush yards in their first two playoff games.

  • One thing the must be weary of is dumb penalties. Oakland had 14 penalties last week for 127 yards, and had the third most penalties (129) during the regular season. In four previous Super Bowls, the have committed just 20 total penalties.

  • Raider QB looks to become the 12th league MVP to lead his team to a Super Bowl title. Gannon is the third highest rated passer in postseason history, with a 94.3 rating (Bart Starr 104.8, Joe Montana 95.6). His postseason rating this season is 110.6.

  • Oakland WRs and may have trouble against the Bucs speedy secondary. Look for WR and TE to play an important role, taking defenders away from Rice and Brown, and keeping from creeping up to stop the run.

  • , who already has three Super Bowl wins with the , holds numerous Super Bowl records, including: career touchdowns (7); receptions (28); receiving yards (512); and combined net yards (527). Rice has 10 TDs in eight career games vs. Tampa.

  • With a win, LB would join Charles Haley as the only players to ever win five Super Bowls. Romo won twice with San Francisco in 1989 and 1990 (SB XXIII & XXIV), and twice with Denver in 1998 and 1999 (SB XXXII & XXXIII).

  • ' guard is a former Buccaneer who the team didn't want to re-sign two years ago. Middleton matches up against .

Tagged: Bears, Raiders, Rams, Vikings, Patriots, Giants, 49ers, Buccaneers, Steelers, Marty Booker, Jerry Rice, Frank Middleton, Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt, Randy Moss, Tom Tupa, Plaxico Burress, Hines Ward, Terrell Owens, Doug Jolley

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