Worst Chokes & Biggest Blown Leads in Super Bowl History

The Super Bowl is one of the biggest stages in professional sports. It’s easilty the biggest stage in the NFL as 100-plus million viewers tune in each year. That puts added pressure on players to perform, and the fact of the matter is that some just can’t handle it.

That is going to be the focus of this article. I’m going to go over some of the biggest choke jobs in Super Bowl history. Sometimes the winning team can make a great play and it’s not a choke by the losing team, but I’ll try to eliminate these cases from my list. Here are the top 10 chokes in Super Bowl history in my opinion.

10. Indianapolis Colts, Super Bowl XLIV

Super Bowl XLIV was one of the most exciting and memorable Super Bowls of all time. The New Orleans Saints were down 10-0 at halftime and were in danger of losing their first ever Super Bowl. However, in the second half, the Saints mounted a remarkable comeback, outscoring the Indianapolis Colts 31-17 and winning the game 31-17.

The Saints’ comeback was fueled by their offense, which was led by quarterback Drew Brees. Brees threw for 288 yards and two touchdowns, and he was aided by a balanced attack from running backs Pierre Thomas and Mike Bell. The Saints defense also stepped up, limiting the Colts to just 17 points and forcing four turnovers.

The comeback was capped off by a memorable play from Tracy Porter. With the Colts driving in the fourth quarter, Porter intercepted a pass from Colts quarterback Peyton Manning and returned it for a touchdown, giving the Saints the lead for good.

The Saints’ Super Bowl XLIV comeback was a remarkable moment in NFL history. It was the first time a team had come back from a 10-point halftime deficit to win a Super Bowl, and it cemented the Saints’ place in history as one of the greatest teams of all time.

9. Pittsburgh Steelers, Super Bowl XXX

The Super Bowl XXX comeback was one of the most memorable moments in Super Bowl history. In 1996, the Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers faced off in a classic Super Bowl matchup. The Cowboys had a 13-point lead at halftime and looked to be cruising to victory. But the Steelers refused to quit and clawed their way back into the game, eventually taking the lead late in the fourth quarter.

The Cowboys then mounted an improbable comeback, scoring two touchdowns in the final three minutes of the game to take the lead and win the Super Bowl. The comeback was led by quarterback Troy Aikman, who threw two touchdown passes in the final minutes of the game, including a 50-yard pass to wide receiver Michael Irvin that put the Cowboys ahead for good.  The comeback also solidified Aikman’s legacy as one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time.

A big part of the Steelers’ collapse was turnovers. Pittsburgh QB Neil O’Donnell threw three interceptions (one was on the last play of the game) after throwing just seven picks all season.

8. Dallas Cowboys, Super Bowl V

The Dallas Cowboys have been one of the most successful teams in NFL history, with five Super Bowl titles, eight conference championships, and 22 division titles. However, one of the team’s most memorable moments came in Super Bowl V in 1971 when the Cowboys suffered a heartbreaking collapse and lost the game to the Baltimore Colts 16-13.

The Cowboys entered the game as the favorite, boasting a strong defense and a powerful offense led by quarterback Roger Staubach. However, the Cowboys were outmatched by the Colts’ defense, which held them to 13 points in the first half and shut them out in the second half.

The loss was especially painful for Cowboys fans, as it was the team’s first Super Bowl appearance. The loss marked a turning point in the Cowboys’ fortunes, as they would go on to win five of their next seven Super Bowl appearances.

The Cowboys’ collapse in Super Bowl V remains one of the most painful moments in the team’s history. While the Cowboys have since rebounded to become one of the most successful teams in NFL history, the memory of the Super Bowl V loss still lingers in the minds of Cowboys fans.

7. Carolina Panthers, Super Bowl XXXVIII

Super Bowl XXXVIII was an incredible game, full of ups and downs, with one of the most dramatic comebacks in Super Bowl history. The New England Patriots were trailing the Carolina Panthers 21-10 in the fourth quarter, but Tom Brady and the Patriots’ offense came alive and scored 18 unanswered points in the final 12 minutes to take home the championship.

The comeback began with a touchdown pass from Brady to Deion Branch to cut the Panthers’ lead to four points. The Patriots then forced a Carolina three-and-out, giving them the ball back with just over four minutes remaining. Brady and the offense then drove the ball down the field, with Brady completing four straight passes to get them into the red zone. The drive was capped off by a 14-yard touchdown pass to Branch, giving the Patriots the lead.

The defense then stepped up to the plate, forcing a turnover on downs on Carolina’s ensuing drive. The Patriots were able to run out the clock and secure the victory, thanks to a late game interception by Asante Samuel.

The Patriots’ comeback in Super Bowl XXXVIII is one of the most memorable moments in Super Bowl history, and it is a testament to the team’s resilience and never-say-die attitude. Brady and the Patriots showed that no matter how dire the situation may seem, it is never over until the final whistle.

6. Philadelphia Eagles, Super Bowl XXXIX

Super Bowl XXXIX was an especially heartbreaking game for the Philadelphia Eagles and their fans. After an incredible 13-3 regular season, the Eagles were the clear favorites to win their first Super Bowl title since 1960.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be. Despite outgaining the New England Patriots in total yards, the Eagles were unable to capitalize on their opportunities, falling to the Patriots 24-21.

The Eagles’ defense, which had been so impressive during the regular season, was unable to contain Tom Brady and the Patriots’ offense. Brady threw for 236 yards and two touchdowns, while the Patriots’ running game was able to gain a total of 115 yards.

The Eagles’ offense was unable to keep up with the Patriots’ scoring, as quarterback Donovan McNabb threw three interceptions and was sacked four times. The Eagles’ running game was also stifled, gaining only 64 yards.

The Eagles had plenty of chances to win the game, but were unable to capitalize on them. In the fourth quarter, the Eagles had the ball inside the Patriots’ five-yard line with a chance to take the lead, but were unable to score.

In the end, the Eagles’ Super Bowl dreams were dashed and they had to settle for a runner-up finish. It was a tough pill to swallow for the Eagles and their fans, who had been so close to a Super Bowl victory.

5. Cincinnati Bengals, Super Bowl XXIII

Super Bowl XXIII was a crushing disappointment for Cincinnati Bengals fans. After an 11-5 regular season and a playoff win against the Seattle Seahawks, the Bengals were on their way to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1981. But, it wasn’t meant to be. The San Francisco 49ers were just too much for the Bengals, and they were handed a crushing 20-16 defeat.

The game itself was a classic. The Bengals had a chance to win the game late in the fourth quarter, but their drive ended with an interception in the end zone. This play has become known as “The Pick” and it is one of the most memorable plays in Super Bowl history.

The loss was a bitter pill to swallow for Bengals fans. It was a chance to erase the bad memories of their last Super Bowl appearance, but instead they were left with another disappointing finish. It was a painful reminder of the fact that the Bengals have yet to win a Super Bowl.

Despite the heartbreaking loss, the Bengals still have a lot to be proud of. They had a great season and showed that they are a team to be reckoned with. With the right pieces in place, the Bengals could make a return to the Super Bowl in the near future. Until then, Bengals fans will always remember the letdown of Super Bowl XXIII.

4. New England Patriots, Super Bowl XLII

Super Bowl XLII was one of the greatest Super Bowls of all time, with the New England Patriots trying to become the first team in NFL history to finish a perfect 19-0 season. The Patriots had the most prolific offense in NFL history, and their defense was equally impressive.

The game was a back-and-forth affair, with the Patriots taking a 14-10 lead into the fourth quarter. But the New York Giants, led by quarterback Eli Manning, staged a dramatic fourth quarter comeback. Manning completed a 32-yard pass to wide receiver David Tyree, who made a miraculous catch by pinning the ball against his helmet. This catch became known as the “Helmet Catch” and it set up the game-winning touchdown.

The Patriots’ loss in Super Bowl XLII was a devastating letdown. It was the first time a team had gone undefeated in the regular season and failed to win the Super Bowl. It was also the first time a team had lost the Super Bowl after entering it undefeated. The Patriots were favored to win by 12 points, making it one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history.

David Tyree’s catch was one of the most iconic plays in NFL history. It was the play that broke the Patriots’ dream of a perfect season and gave the Giants a miraculous victory. To this day, it remains one of the most talked about plays in Super Bowl history.

3. Baltimore Colts, Super Bowl III

The 1969 Super Bowl III between the Baltimore Colts and New York Jets is widely remembered for one thing: the guarantee of victory made by Jets quarterback Joe Namath.

The heavily favored Colts had won the NFL championship the year before, while the Jets had just barely made it into the Super Bowl. To add to the drama, the AFL was viewed as inferior to the NFL, so the Jets were widely seen as heavy underdogs.

Despite this, Joe Namath famously guaranteed a victory for the Jets, a bold move that some saw as brash arrogance. On January 12th, 1969, Namath’s guarantee came true as the Jets pulled off a shocking upset with a 16-7 victory.

The win not only established Namath as an icon, but also validated the AFL as a legitimate league. It was a major upset for the NFL, which had been dominant in the Super Bowl up to that point.

The Baltimore Colts, meanwhile, were seen as having let down their fans. The team had been favored to win, and their loss was a major blow to their fanbase. This was especially true in Baltimore, where the team had been beloved since they moved to the city in 1953.

The loss in Super Bowl III has gone down as one of the biggest upsets in NFL history, and it remains a major part of Joe Namath’s legacy. To this day, the game is remembered as one of the greatest moments in sports history.

2. Buffalo Bills, Super Bowl XXV

The Buffalo Bills’ Super Bowl XXV letdown is one of the most heartbreaking losses in NFL history. In the early 1990s, the Bills had become a powerhouse team, winning four consecutive AFC championships and appearing in four straight Super Bowls. They were heavy favorites in Super Bowl XXV against the New York Giants, but ended up losing 20-19 after Scott Norwood’s famous “wide right” field goal attempt missed its mark.

The game was an epic defensive struggle between two of the NFL’s best teams. The Bills’ offense was unable to get much going, while the Giants managed to grind out a few key drives. Buffalo’s defense held New York to just three points in the second half, setting the stage for a dramatic finish. With just seconds remaining, the Bills had the ball on the Giants’ 29-yard line. Norwood stepped up to try a 47-yard field goal to win the game, but his kick sailed just right of the uprights, giving the Giants a one-point victory.

The Bills were devastated by the loss, and Norwood was made the scapegoat for the defeat. He received death threats from angry fans, and his reputation was tarnished for years. However, in recent years, Norwood has gained a measure of redemption as Bills fans have come to recognize his courage in stepping up and taking the blame for the loss.

The Bills’ Super Bowl XXV letdown remains one of the most heartbreaking losses in NFL history. It was a game that had the potential to bring the city of Buffalo its first Super Bowl title, but instead ended in crushing disappointment. It was a game that would live in infamy, but one that also serves as a reminder of the courage and determination of the Buffalo Bills and their fans.

1. Atlanta Falcons, Super Bowl LI

Super Bowl LI was one of the most memorable and exciting games in NFL history. The Atlanta Falcons, after dominating the game for three quarters, had the lead late in the fourth quarter and looked to be in position to win their first Super Bowl in franchise history. Unfortunately, the Falcons’ dreams were crushed by an improbable comeback by the New England Patriots, led by Tom Brady and Bill Belichick, that resulted in the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history.

The Falcons had a 28-3 lead in the third quarter and looked to be in complete control of the game. However, Tom Brady and the Patriots began to chip away at the lead, scoring a touchdown late in the third quarter to make the score 28-9. In the fourth quarter, the Patriots scored two more touchdowns and then a 2-point conversion to tie the game at 28. In overtime, the Patriots were able to take the lead and eventually win the game 34-28.

The comeback was an incredible feat for the Patriots and it solidified Tom Brady and Bill Belichick’s legacy as one of the greatest quarterback-coach duos in NFL history. The Falcons’ collapse in the fourth quarter, from a 28-3 lead to a 34-28 loss, has been dubbed the “28-3” game and is remembered as one of the most shocking and heartbreaking losses in NFL history.

The Patriots’ comeback victory in Super Bowl LI will be remembered for years to come, as it was one of the most incredible comebacks in sports history. It will also be remembered for how it solidified Tom Brady and Bill Belichick’s legacy as two of the greatest of all time. The Falcons’ loss in Super Bowl LI will be remembered as one of the most heartbreaking defeats in NFL history, as they were unable to hold onto a 19-point lead late in the fourth quarter.

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