Super Bowl XXIII - 49ers 20, Bengals 16
Super Bowl XXIII was an American football game played on January 22, 1989 at Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami, Florida to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion following the 1988 regular season.
This was the first Super Bowl hosted in the Miami area in 10 years, and the first in Miami not held at the Orange Bowl. This was also the last Super Bowl played on the second to last Sunday in January. Ever since, the game has been played on the last Sunday of January and now the first Sunday in February.
The National Football Conference (NFC) champion San Francisco 49ers (13-6) defeated the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Cincinnati Bengals (14-5), 20-16. This was the second meeting between the two teams in the Super Bowl, their first meeting being seven years earlier.
The game is remembered for the 49ers' fourth-quarter game-winning drive. Down 16-13, San Francisco got the ball on their own eight yard line with 3:10 on the clock and marched 92 yards down the field in under three minutes. They then scored the winning touchdown on a Joe Montana pass to John Taylor with just 34 seconds left in the game.
49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice was named the Super Bowl MVP. He caught 11 passes for a Super Bowl record 215 yards and one touchdown, while also rushing once for 5 yards.
This was also the final NFL game coached by the 49ers' Bill Walsh. This was also the final Super Bowl that Pete Rozelle presided over as NFL Commissioner.
On January 26, 2006, NFL.com ranked this game number 1 on its list of the top 10 Super Bowls of all time.
The game was broadcast in the United States by NBC with Dick Enberg handling the play-by-play duties and color commentator Merlin Olsen in the broadcast booth. This would be Olsen's final Super Bowl broadcast, as he was demoted the following season to make room for Bill Walsh. Bob Costas along with Gayle Gardner hosted the pregame, halftime, and postgame coverage with analysts Paul Maguire and then-Miami Dolphins head coach Don Shula and roving reporter Jim Gray. With the win, the 49ers became the first team to win Super Bowls televised on three different networks (CBS-XVI, ABC-XIX, and NBC). Since then, the Washington Redskins (in 1992), the Green Bay Packers (in 1997), the Pittsburgh Steelers (in 2006) and the New York Giants (in 2008) have accomplished this same feat. The game aired on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom.
The pregame festivities honored the Miami and South Florida areas, along with a tribute to NASA.
Singer Billy Joel later sang the national anthem. He also sang the national anthem at Super Bowl XLI which coincidentally was held at the same venue. The coin toss ceremony featured former Miami Dolphins players Nick Buoniconti, Bob Griese, and Larry Little.
This was the last outdoor Super Bowl to start earlier than 6 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, as it started just after 5 p.m.
The halftime show was titled "Be Bop Bamboozled in 3-D" and featured Elvis Presto and hundreds of South Florida-area dancers and performers. Ironically, not one actual Elvis Presley song was performed. Several scenes included computer generated 3-D images. Prior to the game, Coca-Cola distributed 3-D glasses at retailers for viewers to use. At the onset of the halftime show, primary sponsor Diet Coke aired the first commercial in 3-D (Coca-Cola had originally planned to use the 3-D Diet Coke commercial as part of the 1987-1988, aired in 3-D season finale of Moonlighting, but withdrew plans due to the 1988 Writers Guild of America Strike).
This game also marked the debut of the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter. The first winner of the annual survey was an ad from American Express starring Saturday Night Live stars Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz, who went to the game with different credit cards - Carvey with AmEx rival Visa, Lovitz with American Express.
The movie Brotherhood of the Rose aired after the game.