NFL Super Bowl XXXVII: Buccaneers 48 Raiders 21
The Buccaneers Defeat the Raiders 48-21 to win Super Bowl XXXVII, Bucs Safety Dexter Jackson named MVP
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense intercepted five passes, three of which were returned for touchdowns, and recorded five sacks as Tampa Bay scored 34 unanswered points en route to its first Super Bowl victory.
Charles Woodson intercepted Brad Johnson three plays into the game to give Oakland the ball at the Buccaneers' 36. But Simeon Rice sacked Rich Gannon on third down to force the Raiders to settle for Sebastian Janikowski's 40-yard field goal.
On their next nine possessions, the Oakland Raiders registered just two first downs and did not run a play inside the Buccaneers' 40 as Tampa Bay scored the next 34 points. The Buccaneers answered Janikowski's field goal with Martin Gramatica's 31-yard boot to tie the game.
An interception by Dexter Jackson set up Gramatica's go-ahead field goal early in the second quarter. Midway through the second quarter, a 25-yard punt return by Karl Williams and a 19-yard run by Michael Pittman led to Mike Alstott's 2-yard touchdown run.
Late in the half, the Buccaneers drove 77 yards, aided by three defensive penalties and pass receptions of 16 and 12 yards by Alstott, to set up Brad Johnson's 5-yard touchdown pass to Keenan McCardell with 30 seconds left in the half, which gave Tampa Bay a 20-3 lead.
With their first possession of the second half, the Buccaneers put together a 14-play, 89-yard drive that consumed 7:52 and was culminated by Johnson's 8-yard scoring toss to McCardell. Two plays later, Dwight Smith intercepted Gannon's pass and returned it 44 yards for a touchdown and a 34-3 lead with 4:47 left in the third quarter. Tampa Bay scored four touchdowns in a span of 16:37.
Jerry Porter's 39-yard touchdown catch in the back of the end zone made it 34-9. Less than three minutes later, Tim Johnson blocked Tom Tupa's punt. Eric Johnson caught the ball and dove into the end zone for a touchdown to cut the deficit to 34-15 with 14:16 remaining.
The Buccaneers drove deep downfield again, but Tupa mishandled the snap for a field-goal attempt, allowing the Raiders to regain possession. Gannon hit Jerry Rice with a 48-yard touchdown pass with 6:06 left to trim the lead to 34-21.
A 9-yard pass by Johnson to Alstott on third-and-7 allowed Tampa Bay to take another two minutes off the clock before Tupa punted with 2:44 remaining.
On third-and-18 from the Raiders' 29, Derrick Brooks intercepted Gannon's pass and raced 44 yards down the left sideline for a touchdown with 1:18 remaining to give Tampa Bay a commanding 41-21 lead. Smith intercepted a tipped pass and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown with two seconds left to finish the scoring.
Johnson was 18 of 34 for 215 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception. Pittman had 29 carries for 124 yards. Gannon was 24 of 44 for 272 yards and two touchdowns, with a Super Bowl record five interceptions.
Jackson, who had the first two interceptions, one of which led to the go-ahead field goal, was named the game's most valuable player.
Super Bowl XXXVII: MVP Dexter Jackson, FS, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
A bevy of Bucs defenders were worthy of MVP consideration, but Jackson's two first-half interceptions, one of which led to a go-ahead field goal, were the deciding factor in his selection. Cornerback Dwight Smith returned two INTs for scores in the fourth quarter, but Jackson's big plays keyed the outcome of the game.
In Super Bowl XXX, Dallas Cowboys cornerback Larry Brown stepped into the nation's consciousness and in front of two Neil O'Donnell passes to earn the game's Most Valuable Player award.
America, say hello to Dexter Jackson, the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl XXXVII. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers ' free safety won the award after intercepting two Rich Gannon passes in the first half -- a Super Bowl record -- as the Buccaneers rolled to a 48-21 victory over the Oakland Raiders.
Jackson became just the third defensive back in Super Bowl history to win the MVP award, joining Brown and former Miami Dolphins safety Jake Scott (in Super Bowl VII). Ironically, coach Don Shula and several members of that 1972 Dolphins team participated in Sunday's ceremonial coin toss.
But that was only one premonition.
Jackson himself predicted that he had a good chance to be the game's MVP during the seemingly endless pregame buildup.
"My friends were watching ESPN and they were picking their MVPs," Jackson said. "I hadn't even played the game yet, and I figured that I could be the difference. I told somebody that I was going to be the Most Valuable Player.
"We knew that Gannon loves to throw the football, so we knew there was a chance to make some big plays."
Nickel back Dwight Smith had two interception returns for touchdowns and the defensive line continually harassed Gannon, who finished the game with a 48.9 passer rating. Linebacker Derrick Brooks also had an interception return for a touchdown, so the decision was a tough one for the voters.
"As far as I am concerned, the whole defense could have won the award," defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin said.
The interception returns by Smith and Brooks were merely icing on the cake for a game that quickly turned into a blowout, despite a desperate comeback attempt by the Raiders. It was Jackson's interceptions that really turned the game in the Buccaneers' favor.
"That was big," Smith said. "Any time you can make Rich Gannon make a mistake, it's big. Dexter's first two interceptions really helped the momentum. My interception just sealed the deal. That's usually what our defense does. We make the plays that seal the game."
Jackson's first interception came late in the first quarter. Darrien Gordon had given the Raiders good field position near midfield with a 17-yard punt return. On third down, Jackson intercepted Gannon's pass for tight end Doug Jolley, who seemed out of position on the play.
"They had three receivers on one side and one on the backside," Jackson said. "They tried to flood one side and get [Jolley] matched up with our safety. They were trying to get John Lynch , so I went over and picked it off."
Martin Gramatica's 43-yard field goal culminated the nine-play drive, which put the Buccaneers on top 6-3 -- a lead they would never relinquish.
On the very next possession, Jackson victimized Gannon again, and the Buccaneers roared to a 20-3 halftime lead. For Jackson, being named Most Valuable Player was validation for the secondary.
"We had the No. 1 defense and nobody gave us any credit," Jackson said. "We felt like we were one of the strong points of the team. We just didn't get any attention.
"I look at it like an expensive car. You appreciate the shiny outside exterior of the car, but you don't really appreciate the underneath stuff, like the spark plugs. I feel like I'm one of the spark plugs on this team."
When Jackson first came to the Buccaneers, he was affectionately nicknamed "Dirt Road" in honor of his rural hometown of Quincy, Fla. As Super Bowl MVP, he will take home the Cadillac of his choice -- spark plugs and all.
Jackson was a highly touted quarterback recruited to Florida State, looking to become the next Charlie Ward, who won the Heisman Trophy and led the Seminoles to a national championship. Jackson was a blue-chip quarterback listed with the likes of Donovan McNabb , Shaun King, and Daunte Culpepper , but switched to defensive back after looking at the competition, which included future NFL quarterback Danny Kanell.
"I thought I would be an offensive player, playing quarterback," Jackson said. "Coming out of high school, I got a lot of offers. I thought I would be one of the quarterbacks in the state of Florida, but I switched roles. I'm just quarterback of the defense now."
Jackson's college career ended on the wrong side of the Fiesta Bowl as Tennessee defeated Florida State to win the national championship. While he couldn't bring a national title to his home state, he has brought home a Lombardi Trophy, along with his MVP award.
"This is terrific," Jackson said. "It's unexplainable to be the Super Bowl MVP. It's a great time for the whole state of Florida."
Super Bowl XXXVII
SUPER BOWL XXXVII SCORING
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
OAK FG Janikowski 40, 4:20
TB FG Gramatica 31, 7:09
TB FG Gramatica 43, 3:44
TB Alstott 2 run (Gramatica kick), 8:36
TB McCardell 5 pass from B. Johnson (Gramatica kick), 14:30
TB McCardell 8 pass from B. Johnson (Gramatica kick), 9:30
TB D.Smith 44 interception return (Gramatica kick), 10:13
OAK Porter 39 pass from Gannon (pass failed), 12:46
OAK E.Johnson 13 return of blocked punt (pass failed), 0:46
OAK J.Rice 48 pass from Gannon (pass failed), 8:54
TB Brooks 44 interception return (Gramatica kick), 13:42
TB D.Smith 50 interception return (Gramatica kick), 14:58
January 26, 2003
Qualcomm Stadium (San Diego, California)
Super Bowl XXXVII: Ticket and Championship Ring
Super Bowl Games & Super Bowl MVP History
Super Bowl I
Green Bay Packers 35 Kansas City Chiefs 10
Super Bowl II
Green Bay Packers 33 Oakland Raiders 14
Super Bowl III
New York Jets 16 Baltimore Colts 7
Super Bowl IV
Kansas City Chiefs 23 Minnesota Vikings 7
Super Bowl V
Baltimore Colts 16 Dallas Cowboys 13
Super Bowl VI
Dallas Cowboys 24 Miami Dolphins 3
Super Bowl VII
Miami Dolphins 14 Washington Redskins 7
Super Bowl VIII
Miami Dolphins 24 Minnesota Vikings 7
Super Bowl IX
Pittsburgh Steelers 16 Minnesota Vikings 6
Super Bowl X
Steelers 21 Dallas Cowboys 17
Super Bowl XI
Oakland Raiders 32 Minnesota Vikings 14
Super Bowl XII
Cowboys 27 Denver Broncos 10
Super Bowl XIII
Pittsburgh Steelers 35 Dallas Cowboys 31
Super Bowl XIV
Pittsburgh Steelers 31 Los Angeles Rams 19
Super Bowl XV
Oakland Raiders 27 Philadelphia Eagles 10
Super Bowl XVI
San Francisco 49ers 26 Cincinnati Bengals 21
Super Bowl XVII
Washington Redskins 27 Miami Dolphins 17
Super Bowl XVIII
Los Angeles Raiders 38 Washington Redskins 9
Super Bowl XIX
San Francisco 49ers 38 Miami Dolphins 16
Super Bowl XX
Chicago Bears 46 New England Patriots 10
Super Bowl XXI
New York Giants 39 Denver Broncos 20
Super Bowl XXII
Washington Redskins 42 Denver Broncos 10
Super Bowl XXIII
San Francisco 49ers 20 Cincinnati Bengals 16
Super Bowl XXIV
San Francisco 49ers 55 Denver Broncos 10
Super Bowl XXV
New York Giants 20 Buffalo Bills 19
Super Bowl XXVI
Washington Redskins 37 Buffalo Bills 24
Super Bowl XXVII
Dallas Cowboys 52 Buffalo Bills 17
Super Bowl XXVIII
Dallas Cowboys 30 Buffalo Bills 13
Super Bowl XXIX
San Francisco 49ers 49 San Diego Chargers 26
Super Bowl XXX
Dallas Cowboys 27 Pittsburgh Steelers 17
Super Bowl XXXI
Green Bay Packers 35 New England Patriots 21
Super Bowl XXXII
Denver Broncos 31 Green Bay Packers 24
Super Bowl XXXIII
Denver Broncos 34 Atlanta Falcons 19
Super Bowl XXXIV
Saint Louis Rams 23 Tennessee Titans 16
Super Bowl XXXV
Baltimore Ravens 34 New York Giants 7
Super Bowl XXXVI
New England Patriots 20 Saint Louis Rams 17
Super Bowl XXXVII
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 48 Oakland Raiders 21
Super Bowl XXXVIII
New England Patriots 32 Carolina Panthers 29
Super Bowl XXXIX
New England Patriots 24 Philadelphia Eagles 21
Super Bowl XL
Steelers 21 Seahawks 10
Super Bowl XLI
Colts 29 Bears 17
Super Bowl XLII
New York Giants 17 New England Patriots 14
Super Bowl XLIII
Pittsburgh Steelers 27 Arizona Cardinals 23
Super Bowl XLIV
New Orleans Saints 31 Indianapolis Colts 17