Countdown to Super Bowl 50: Dilfer becomes a legend

There is only one day left. Whether it will be Cam Newton hoisting the trophy or Peyton Manning, in less than 48 hours, the world will have it’s answer. Should Peyton win that one last Super Bowl, well, he may be the quarterback with the worst season to do so since good ol’ Trent Dilfer.

This is arguably the worst Super Bowl we ever had to endure. XXXV was a battle of two of the top rated defenses in the NFL, and while that is exciting and all, let’s face reality. When it comes to the Super Bowl, we as fans want to see a little bit of offensive excitement.

I watched the game at Shannon Finney’s house with a group we used to call the Disney Dozen. I was surrounded by Giants fans, and all I remember was going out before the game, buying a white t-shirt and a purple marker, and writing GIANTS SUCK on it. That was my “jersey” for the day.

Offensively speaking, this game was horrific. The two quarterbacks, Dilfer and Kerry Collins COMBINED for 265 yards passing, one touchdown and four interceptions, which looked more like Manning’s stat line when he combusted against he Seahawks two years ago.

But this game was always about the defense.

Dilfer came into the Super Bowl — his lone season in Baltimore mind you — and wasn’t even the Opening Day starter. That dubious honor was for Tony Banks. Quite the options Brian Billick had to go with, so it’s no wonder Dilfer was at the helms.

His stats weren’t pretty during the regular season, but they didn’t need to be. This Ravens defense allowed 10 points per game. Dilfer needed to get Matt Stover in field goal range four times a game, and this Ravens team could have gone undefeated.

That’s why it was such a surprise that Dilfer would start off the scoring with a 38-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Stokely. That was all the Ravens needed as the dismantled the Giants 34-7. That defense actually pitched a shut out as the special teams was the only ding in an otherwise perfect day.

That was actually the coolest part of this Super Bowl. At one point in the third quarter, if you had gone to go pee pee, you would have missed 21 points scored. It was insane.

(Photo credit should read RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images)
(Photo credit should read RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images)

Duane Starks picked off Collins — one of four Collins interceptions on the day — and takes it to the house. Ron Dixon returns the ensuing kickoff 97-yards for the Giants lone score of the game. Clearly angered that the Giants even got in the end zone, Jermaine Lewis took the next kickoff 84 yards for his own touchdown.

Essentially, that was all we needed to watch in this Super Bowl. 36 seconds of play. The rest was what filled the time in between Super Bowl commercials.

That being said, Dilfer won his Super Bowl. He is constantly brought up when discussing the greatness of legendary quarterbacks. Here, let me give you an example.

Person: “How can you say Dan Marino is better than Joe Montana when he never won a Super Bowl?”

Me: “Because Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl.”

Person: “Ok, maybe Marino is better.”

Dilfer played a sound, smart game, much better than Collins. I mean come on, the Giants had more kick return yards (170) than total offense in this game (152). They should have never been allowed to play in another Super Bowl again.

Ray Lewis would win MVP and as for Dilfer? The Ravens wouldn’t even re-sign him the following season as he took his talents to Seattle. The Ravens would turn to the legendary Elvis Grbac instead, go 10-6 and get annihilated in the divisional round by their biggest rivals in the Pittsburgh Steelers. Which leaves you wondering…

Just how good could the Ravens have been with Dilfer in the long run?

Ok, fine, I don’t think anyone in the history of time has ever wondered that.


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