Another Super Blowout
If the NFC team won...
If it was a blowout that was decided by halftime...
If the quarterback was the Most Valuable Player...
Then it had to be the Super Bowl.
Which means it wasn't all that super.
The Dallas Cowboys' 52-17 win over the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVII was another in a long list of NFC victories over the AFC--nine cosecutive victories dating back to Super Bowl XVIII. It might also mark the start of a dynasty for Dallas.
For the Bills, it was another tragic loss in the nation's premier sports spectacle. They lost their quarterback and lost their spirit. And they lost in a Super Bowl for the third time in a row, the first team with that ignominious record.
Super Bowl XXVII had the makings of a truly great game until just before halftime. That's when Buffalo became unglued and Dallas turned an uneasy 14-10 lead into a 28-10 rout that continued throughout the second half.
Buffalo lost the ball nine times--five fumbles and four interceptions--and they led directly to five Dallas touchdowns. The most costly turnover was a Jim Kelly interception on a fourth-down play at the Dallas one-yard line early in the second quarter.
"You turn the ball over the way we did, there's no way you're going to win the game," said Kelly, who was injured in the second quarter and sat out the rest of the game. "It's a loss. It doesn't matter if you lose by three points or 30 or 20. Nobody likes to lose."
It was another story for the Cowboys, who returned to the Super Bowl after a 13-year absence and only three seasons removed from a 1-15 record.
Troy Aikman threw four touchdown passes on 22 of 30 passing for 273 yards and no interceptions and was voted the game's MVP. He threw TD passes of 18 and 19 yards to Michael Irvin, 23 yards to Jay Novacek, and 45 yards to Alvin Harper.
"Troy was definitely in a zone," said Dallas running back Emmitt Smith, who rushed for 108 yards on 22 caries and scored on a 10-yard run.
But the Dallas defense was the story of the day. Defensive end Jimmie Jones scored on a two-yard return of a Kelly fumble, and LB Ken Norton ended the scoring on a 9-yard return of a Frank Reich fumble. Dallas' Leon Lett almost scored on a 65-yard fumble return, but he had the ball stripped from him just before he reached the goal line by Buffalo WR Don Beebe.
"Any time you have nine turnovers, you don't have a chance in the world, even if you have every great player in the league on your team," said Buffalo LB Cornelius Bennett.
Buffalo opened the scoring on a two-yard run by Thurman Thomas, who gained only 19 yards on 11 carries. Don Beebe scored Buffalo's other TD on a 40-yard pass from Reich, and Steve Christie added a 21-yard field goal.
Dallas' margin of victory was the third-largest in a Super Bowl.