Super Bowl Memories, Part I: Super Bowl XXV
Each day leading up to the big game, I'll chronicle my top five Super Bowls of all time, my memories of Super Bowl Sunday, quick recap of the game and some other thoughts on that particular Super Bowl.
I was five years old back in 1991. Clinton wasn't president yet and the internet wouldn't really begin to grow for another three and a half years.
I remember my mom talking to me a few months before about what was going on down in the Persian Gulf and what the soldiers were doing was important.
My younger brother Victor, who was three at the time, was napping that morning as I ate breakfast and watched cartoons when I saw the front page of the local paper.
I asked my dad what the Super Bowl was and he said it was a football game. He said it was for the world championship.
It was at that moment that my brother came down and I hugged him, telling him all about the game and that it was for the championship. My dad said we could all watch the game together that night and that's when my life changed.
As we gathered in the den with a few of my parents' friends, all the pre-game festivities went on: breakdowns of the teams, predictions, etc.
I drank my soda and ate my chips with my brother as Frank Gifford introduced Whitney Houston for her incredible rendition of the national anthem.
My dad and his friends chatted about the details of the game while me, my mom, my brother, and some of our friends watched in amazement. Even though I didn't know what was going on, I still watched in wonder.
It was about midway through the third quarter when I was really locked in. After Ottis Anderson scored to make it 17-12 in favor of New York, I turned to my dad and asked, "Are they going to win?"
My dad said, "Watch and see."
Looking back on the game, I remember hearing from my dad how great the Bills offense was but as the game progressed I didn't see until their final drive to win the game—Jim Kelly did what he does best.
Short passes combined with runs by Thurman Thomas got the Bills into range where Scott Norwood attempted his game-winning kick.
When the kick missed wide right, my dad picked me up and spun me around in celebration as Bill Parcells was showered with Gatorade, Ottis Anderson was named Super Bowl MVP, and Disney would plug its parks non-stop for a few minutes.
I happily went to bed holding my brother, not being able to get the game out of my head and unable to tell my friends about it at school the next day.
As we well all know, defensive coordinator Bill Belichick's gameplan for the Giants was legendary in limiting the Bills' K-Gun offense to only 19 points, but the most underrated performance of that whole game was by Jeff Hostetler, who replaced Phil Simms at the end of the season.
Hostetler completed 20-of-32 passes for 222 yards and a touchdown. He also completed seven passes on the 14-play drive that led to the go-ahead field goal late in the fourth quarter.
January 27, 1991 marked my initiation into the game of football.
Though my young mind had no clue what a field goal was or even what those little yellow flags meant, I did know that my life was about to change forever and that a game that meant so much to so many made me a fan of what is now America's most popular sport.
I still find it amazing that the Bills made four-straight Super Bowls—and lost them all.
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