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No doubt

Baltimore throttles New York 34-7 in Super Bowl XXXV

Click here for more on this story
Posted: Sunday January 28, 2001 10:08 PM
Updated: Monday January 29, 2001 7:43 AM

  Trent Dilfer, Brandon Stokley Ravens quarterback Trent Dilfer and wide receiver Brandon Stokley celebrate their first-quarter touchdown. AP

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- This Super Bowl was a roll in the mud, not a grand passing duel between future Hall of Famers.

No one in Baltimore cares.

The city without an NFL championship since the old Colts won a Super Bowl 30 years ago got another one Sunday, when the Ravens beat the New York Giants 34-7 behind a smothering defense led by Ray Lewis.

"If you put this in a storybook, nobody would believe it," said Lewis, who was voted the game's MVP.

It certainly was a storybook for Lewis, who was arrested last year on murder charges in the stabbing deaths of two men at a Super Bowl party in Atlanta. He subsequently pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of obstructing justice.

"We didn't just break records, we shattered them," Lewis said. "We dominated literally. This is what you work your whole life for. You come from childhood, dreaming whatever you want it to be, but now, at 25, to be a world champion, what else can I dream of?"

Click the image to launch the clip
   Ravens head coach Brian Billick is ready to argue his defense is the best in NFL history.
   Ravens QB Trent Dilfer talks about his redemption after a terrible start in Tampa Bay.
Super Bowl sights and sounds
• Photo Galleries: Pregame | First Quarter | Second | Third | Fourth
Inside Game
• Monday Morning Quarterback: Lewis a new version of LT
• SI's Don Banks: Legendary 'D'
•'s John Donovan: Brash as they want to be Features
• SI's Don Banks: What We Learned
• Closer Look: A TD flurry
•'s Trev Alberts and Ron Meyer: Breaking down the Ravens' win
•'s Dan George: Ads had something for everyone
• Statitudes: Sour apples | By The Numbers
• Ravens Locker Room: Walking the walk
• Giants Locker Room: Bum and bummer
• Listen Up! Sunday's Quotables
• Animated Playbooks: Collins is intercepted again
• Complete Coverage:'s Super Bowl XXXV Coverage
From The Wires
• MVP: Lewis stands out
• Notebook: Giants applaud Ravens defense
• Typical Trent: Dilfer gives usual performance
• Brash Billick: Coach inspires Ravens
• Giant struggles: Sehorn suffers reversal of fortunes | Collins flounders
• TV: The Eye network | Aerosmith, N'Sync add spice to halftime
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• Reactions: Ravens defense is great, but not the best

Lewis, the defensive player of the year, led a defense that intercepted four Kerry Collins passes and held New York to 152 yards of offense, fitting for a team that allowed the fewest points ever in a 16-game season.

Duane Starks returned an interception 49 yards for a touchdown, the first of three TDs on three plays late in the third quarter. The other two were back-to-back kickoff returns by Ron Dixon of New York and Jermaine Lewis of Baltimore, the first time that's happened in a Super Bowl.

"I feel our defense is the best ever," said offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden, a sentiment echoed by every one of his 52 teammates after the game.

The victory gave 75-year-old Art Modell his first Super Bowl victory in 40 years as an owner. He won one NFL title in 35 seasons in Cleveland before moving his franchise to Baltimore in 1996, but he had never been to a Super Bowl, losing two close AFC title games in Cleveland.

Modell won by beating his good friend Wellington Mara of the Giants, who has 75 seasons in the NFL.

"I'm a very happy man," said Modell, who insists he has no hard feelings about Cleveland, even though the city still has a lot of hard feelings about him.

The Ravens became the third wild-card team to win the Super Bowl. The Oakland Raiders did it in 1981 and Denver won in 1998.

So effective was Baltimore's defense that the New York offense never got inside the Ravens 29. Baltimore would have had the first shutout in a Super Bowl if the special teams had not allowed Dixon's 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

The game might as well have been stopped after Trent Dilfer's 38-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Stokley with 6:50 left in the first quarter gave the Ravens a 7-0 lead.

"I don't put the blame on anyone but myself. I just got beat," said Giants cornerback Jason Sehorn, who had been a standout throughout the playoffs.

This was hardly a game between classic quarterbacks like Johnny Unitas, John Elway, Joe Montana, Brett Favre or even the Giants' Phil Simms, who 15 years ago set a Super Bowl record by completing 88 percent of his passes in a victory against Denver.

Before the game, Dilfer said all he wanted to be was the quarterback of a team that won a Super Bowl despite its quarterback. He is after completing 12 of 25 passes for 153 yards, in his return to Tampa Bay, where he was released by the Buccaneers after last season.

"I didn't throw the ball very well," Dilfer said. "But we talked about making big plays and we made them when we needed them. We aren't pretty, like St. Louis, but we got the job done. This is a team that puts wins ahead of stats."

Collins, who threw for 381 yards in the NFC title game against Minnesota, was 15-of-39 for 112 yards with those four interceptions.

Stark Raven Mad Click on image for larger view.  

"There wasn't a whole lot good about what I did [Sunday]," Collins said.

This was punt-o-rama for most of the game, the 11th consecutive victory for Baltimore.

Brad Maynard of the Giants and Kyle Richardson each ended up breaking the record of nine punts -- Maynard had 11, Richardson 10. By contrast, the Giants had just one punt in their 41-0 win against Minnesota.

It was still 10-0 late in the third quarter when the game exploded.

Starks started it by stepping in front of Amani Toomer on a first down, grabbing the ball and racing 49 yards untouched to the end zone to give Baltimore a 17-point lead.

Game over? Not quite.

Dixon, who returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown in New York's playoff victory against Philadelphia, returned another one for a score.

But then Jermaine Lewis took Brad Daluiso's kickoff, weaved through the Giants and ran up the sideline for an 84-yard TD and another 17-point lead, 24-7.

"The emotional flip-flop had to be devastating to them," Ravens head coach Brian Billick said.

Giants defensive end Michael Strahan agreed.

Three TDs in 36 seconds
give Super Bowl a jolt
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Three plays, three touchdowns.

In a Super Bowl in which points were supposed to be at a premium, three touchdowns on consecutive plays consumed just 36 seconds in the third quarter. The returns provided a flurry of action to a punt-filled 34-7 Baltimore rout of the New York Giants on Sunday.

The Ravens got the best of the touchdown exchange, scoring on a 49-yard interception return by Duane Starks and an 84-yard kickoff return by Jermaine Lewis, sandwiched around Ron Dixon's 97-yard touchdown return for the Giants.

The return by Starks gave the Ravens a 17-0 lead, a seemingly insurmountable margin against a virtually immovable Baltimore defense that seemed poised to get the first shutout in Super Bowl history.

But Dixon, the rookie from tiny Lambuth College who also had a return for a touchdown on the opening kickoff in New York's playoff victory over Philadelphia, gave the Giants some life with his 97-yard dash up the middle.

Any hopes for a New York comeback came to a quick end seconds later when Lewis found a lane and tightroped down the sideline and for a touchdown with 3:13 left in the quarter, giving the Ravens a 24-7 margin. 

"That gave us new life and then when they take it right back it takes it right out of us," Strahan said. "We didn't go out and create turnovers. It was going to be a field-position battle. It was going to be a turnover battle and we lost both of those. If you do that against a team like that, it's not going to help your chances."

Jamal Lewis, who carried 29 times for 102 yards, added a 3-yard run in the fourth quarter and Matt Stover, who had a 47-yard field goal in the second quarter, added a 38-yarder in the fourth.

Neither team had a first down in its first two possessions, but Baltimore kept inching closer to the New York goal on the exchange of punts.

The Giants got a first down on their third possession, when they were pinned back against their goal line. But they had to punt and the Ravens got a 34-yard return from Jermaine Lewis that gave them a first down at the New York 41 to start the series.

On the second play, Dilfer found Stokley behind Sehorn for the game's first score. But that was one of the few times the Baltimore quarterback was on target, twice missing open receivers behind the Giants' secondary.

"Trent just threw a perfect ball," Billick said.

Five minutes into the second quarter, New York's Jessie Armstead picked off a poorly thrown Dilfer pass and ran it into the end zone. But the Giants' Keith Hamilton was called for holding on the play, negating the interception.

The Ravens got their second big play late in the first half, a 44-yard pass from Dilfer to Qadry Ismail that set up Stover's 47-yarder that made it 10-0.

The Giants mounted their first threat after that, as Tiki Barber ran 27 yards to the Baltimore 29. But on the next play, Collins went for the end zone and Chris McAlister intercepted to send the Ravens into intermission with the 10-point lead.

"I didn't expect to turn over the ball five times," Giants head coach Jim Fassel said. "You can't play football like that. When you do that against a team like that, this is what happens."

Related information
Ravens-Giants Game Summary
Ray Lewis talks about what it means to win a Super Bowl. (72 K)
Lewis puts in perspective how he attacked this game. (231 K)
Lewis will graciously accept the game MVP honor. (165 K)
Ravens coach Brian Billick is elated with the play of Trent Dilfer. (60 K)
Tony Siragusa announces the news that his family is expecting the stork. (211 K)
Giants coach Jim Fassel wanted to try to make Baltimore defend both the run and pass. (176 K)
Fassel measures the Ravens place in history. (127 K)
Kerry Collins is glad to have the positives of a run to the Super Bowl to build upon. (238 K)
Tiki Barber is asked to comment on Ray Lewis winning a championship title. (109 K)
Barber evaluates what happened to the Giants offense. (125 K)
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