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SUPER BOWL LV

BuccaneersFan.com Super Bowl XXXVII BUCS World Champions

February 7, 2021 - Raymond James Stadium - Tampa, Florida

A Historic Buccaneers moment being the first team to play in Super Bowl at home stadium and WIN!

The National Football Conference (NFC) champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Kansas City Chiefs, 31-09. The game held on Sunday, February 7, 2021, at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Florida, the home stadium of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, historically making it the first time a team played, in the modern National Football Leagues (NFL) a Super Bowl in its home stadium. With COVID-19 Pandemic protocols active the stadium's seating capacity was limited to 25,000 fans, making it the least-attended Super Bowl in history

The Buccaneer's victory made it their second World Championship, the first being Sunday, January 26, 2003 in Super Bowl XXXVII, the last Super Bowl played in the month of January, against Oakland Raiders 48-21. This also made them one of the few teams, other than the Baltimore Ravens, to remain undefeated in multiple Super Bowls. THe BUCS finished with a 11-5 regular season record and a Wild-Card berth to advance to their second Super Bowl appearance. The Kansas City Chiefs finished the regular season with a 14-2 record to advance to their fourth Super Bowl appearence and the defending Super Bowl LIV champions, seeking to become the first repeat champions since the Patriots in 2004.

According to mainstream media and the majority of well known sports network commentators Kansas City was favored to win, by a landslide. The Buccaneers had other plans. The Chiefs were faced with offensive struggles and costly penalties. Encountered by a Buccaneers' relentless pass rush that dominated their offensive line to record the Super Bowl's highest quarterback pressure rate ever, the Chiefs failed to score a single touchdown and lost by double-digits for the first time under quarterback and reigning Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes, making them also the third Super Bowl team to not score a touchdown. The Chiefs under pressure and being over-played, committed 11 penalties for 120 yards, including a record eight penalties for 95 yards in the first half alone, most of which were called against the defense.

The Buccaneers sailed a true path taking a commanding 21–6 lead heading into the locker room at halftime and dominated the remainder of the game. Quarterback Tom Brady, who also extended many of his player records for Super Bowl appearances at 10 and wins at seven, was named Super Bowl MVP for a record fifth time and was the first to receive the award with multiple franchises, and also joined Peyton Manning as only the second quarterback to have won a Super Bowl with two different teams. Brady also became the oldest player to receive the honor and win a Super Bowl as the starting quarterback, breaking additional personal records, while Bruce Arians was the oldest head coach to win the Super Bowl at 68.

The game was televised nationally by CBS. Country music singer Eric Church and R&B singer Jazmine Sullivan performed a great national anthem with an unprecedented triple-bomber flyover featuring a B-1B from Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota, a B-2 Spirit from Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, and a B-52 Stratofortress from Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota during the final notes of the “Star Spangled Banner.”, that featured no sideline kneeling protest. The Bidens were very obviousely Booed During their pre-recorded speech aired inside the stadium and several official watch parties, while the halftime show was headlined by Canadian singer The Weeknd. On television, Super Bowl LV was seen by 91.63 million viewers, the lowest ratings for the game since 2006. Combined with viewership on other platforms, viewership was down by 5% overall in comparison to Super Bowl LIV, but with a 69% increase in average streaming viewership.

Super Bowl LV - One For The History Books

30,000 fans are cutouts first woman to officiate a Super Bowl in NFL history.
RECORDS SET
(Unless noted, all records refer only to Super Bowls)
NFL teams to play a Super Bowl in home stadium, team 1 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Super Bowl LV)
NFL teams to Win a Super Bowl in home stadium, team 1 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Super Bowl LV)
Largest number of Cut-Out Fans attending Super Bowl 30,000 Super Bowl LV Raymond James Stadium
Most appearances, player 10 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most appearances, starting player 10 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most NFL championships won, player 7 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most wins, player 7 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most Super Bowl MVPs, player 5 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most pass attempts, player (career) 421 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most pass completions, player (career) 277 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most passing yards, player (career) 3,039 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most touchown passes, player (career) 21 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest quarterback, player 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest quarterback, starting player 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest quarterback, winning team 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest player 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest player, starting player 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest player, winning team 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Oldest player to win Super Bowl MVP 43yrs 188days Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most touchdowns, QB-reveiver tandem career 5 Tom Brady-Rob Gronkowski (Tampa Bay)
Most receptions, tight end (career) 29 Rob Gronkowski (Tampa Bay)
Most receiving yards, tight end 133 Travis Kelce (Chiefs)
Oldest head coach, winning team 68yrs, 325days Bruce Arians (Tampa Bay)
Most penalty yards in any half 95 Kansas City Chiefs
Most first downs by penalty, team 6 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Most first downs by penalty, both teams 9 Tampa Bay (6) vs. Kansas City (3)
Lowest stadium audience attendance 24,835 Super Bowl LV
First woman to officiate a Super Bowl in NFL history 1 Sarah Thomas (Super Bowl LV)
Longest Vince Lombardi Trophy Pass, completed 17ft-8in fwd lateral/shovel pass Q-T.Brady to TE-C.Brate
RECORDS TIED
Most championships won in Pro Football history, player 7 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most fumbles, player (career) 5 Tom Brady (Tampa Bay)
Most teams scoring touchdowns, player (career) 2 Rob Gronkowski (Tampa Bay)
Most fumbles recovered, player (career) 2 Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City)
Fewest touchdowns, team 0 Kansas City Chiefs
Fewest rushing touchdowns, team 0 Kansas City Chiefs
Fewest passing touchdowns, team 0 Kansas City Chiefs
Fewest punt returns, team 0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Fewest turnovers, team 0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Fewest punt return yards, both teams 0 Super Bowl LV
Fewest fumbles lost, both teams 0 Super Bowl LV

Background

Host Selection Process

On May 19, 2015, the league announced the five finalists for hosting Super Bowl LIII in 2019 and Super Bowl LIV in 2020. NFL team owners voted on these cities on May 24, 2016, with the first round of voting determining the host for Super Bowl LIII, and the second round deciding the site for Super Bowl LIV. In a development not known in advance, a third round of voting was added to select a Super Bowl LV hosting site. Atlanta and Miami were awarded Super Bowls LIII and LIV respectively, removing them from the running for LV. Los Angeles was not eligible for Super Bowl LIII, as their stadium was under construction and would not yet be finished; it was eligible for LIV and LV, and opted to bid only on the latter.

The two candidates were:
  • Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida: Tampa had hosted four Super Bowls, the last being Super Bowl XLIII in 2009.
  • SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, California: Los Angeles had hosted the Super Bowl seven times, most recently in 1993 with Super Bowl XXVII; that game, along with the four prior Super Bowls in the area, was held at the Rose Bowl while the first two Super Bowls in the Los Angeles area were held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Los Angeles was originally chosen as the host site for Super Bowl LV in a vote on May 24, 2016. However, due to construction delays, authorities announced that the stadium would not be completed until the start of the 2020 NFL season. On May 23, 2017, NFL owners voted unanimously, with the Rams' approval, to move Super Bowl LV to Tampa Bay. The City of Inglewood will instead host Super Bowl LVI in 2022.

Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

As of the start of the 2020 NFL season, the league had forbidden on-field entertainment, such as halftime shows and national anthem performances at games with spectators. These elements, which have historically been cornerstones of the Super Bowl entertainment, would be produced off-site if restrictions remain in place. In case a COVID-19 outbreak forced the postponements of regular season and playoff games, the league stated that Super Bowl LV could be delayed as far as February 28.

The state of Florida removed capacity restrictions for sporting events in October, although the three Florida-based teams have voluntarily maintained 20–25 percent capacity limits. As of late October 2020, the NFL was planning a minimum attendance of 20% of capacity, in hopes that a larger capacity would be possible by game day.

On January 22, 2021, the NFL had originally announced that the game would have 22,000 fans in attendance, 7,500 of whom would be health care workers who had received a COVID-19 vaccine, primarily from the Tampa and central Florida region. The NFL was also planning on helping fill in the empty seats by selling 30,000 cardboard cutouts to fans. On February 2, the league increased the expected attendance to 25,000. Super Bowl LV was the least-attended Super Bowl in the game's history; the next-lowest attendance was the 61,946 who attended the inaugural game in 1967.

NFL protocols require the closest rows of seats to be blocked with tarps in order to reduce spectator proximity to the field. For the Super Bowl, they were covered with additional LED video boards. Behind the scenes media, press and special access attendees the week of the Super Bowl were required to submit to strict COVID-19 Access screening.

The traditional events held during Super Bowl week were significantly reduced. Capacity at the Super Bowl Experience at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park was limited due to health and safety protocols. Instead of holding practices and participating in media events during the entire week in the Super Bowl host city, the Chiefs flew into Tampa on the day before the game as they had during the regular season (had another NFC team advanced to the Super Bowl instead of the Buccaneers, they would have done this as well). The "Super Bowl Opening Night" festivities on the Monday preceding the game were cancelled and replaced with a virtual media availability.

THE TEAMS

Kansas City Chiefs

The defending Super Bowl Champions entered the game a highly anticapated favorite of the main stream media. With a recorded AFC 14–2 record, best in NFL in 2020 under eighth year head coach Andy Reid. Other than a 40–32 loss against the Raiders in week 5, the Chiefs only defeat was the final game of the season, when they rested most of their starters because they had already clinched the No. 1 seed in the playoffs. This appearance was the Chiefs' fourth trip to the Super Bowl. They lost Super Bowl I (1967), but won Super Bowls IV (1970) and LIV (2020).

Kansas City's offense ranked first in the NFL in yards (6,653) and sixth in points scored (473). Quarterback Patrick Mahomes made the Pro Bowl for the third consecutive season, throwing for 4,740 yards (second in the league) and 38 touchdowns, with only six interceptions, while also finishing the season as Kansas City's second leading rusher with a career high 308 yards and two scores. His main target was Pro Bowl tight end Travis Kelce, who caught 105 passes for 1,416 yards and 11 touchdowns, making him the NFL's second leading receiver and setting a new league record for receiving yards by a tight end. Pro Bowl receiver Tyreek Hill had 87 receptions for 1,276 yards and 15 touchdowns, while also rushing for 132 yards and two touchdowns. Mahomes also had receivers Demarcus Robinson (45 receptions for 466 yards), Mecole Hardman (41 reception for 561 yards and 360 return yards on special teams), and Sammy Watkins (37 receptions for 421 yards). The team's leading rusher from 2019, Damien Williams, opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns. He was replaced by rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire to fill the void, rushing for 808 yards and four touchdowns, while also catching 36 passes for 297 yards and another touchdown alongside Le'Veon Bell who had 254 yards and two touchdowns. Tackle Eric Fisher led the Chiefs offensive line, making his second Pro Bowl selection. However, he was forced to miss the Super Bowl after suffering a torn achilles tendon in the AFC championship game. On special teams, kicker Harrison Butker made 25-of-27 field goals, including all four of his attempts from over 50 yards.

The Chiefs defense was ranked 16th in the league in yards allowed (5,733). The Chiefs defensive line was led by Pro Bowl selections Chris Jones (7 1/2 sacks and two forced fumbles) and Frank Clark (six sacks). Linebacker Anthony Hitchens ranked second on the team with 78 tackles. Kansas City also had a superb secondary, led by Pro Bowl strong safety Tyrann Mathieu (68 tackles, six interceptions, and one fumble recovery) and free safety Daniel Sorensen (91 tackles, three interceptions, and two forced fumbles), along with cornerbacks Bashaud Breeland (two interceptions) and rookie L'Jarius Sneed (three interceptions and two sacks).

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

The BUCS finished the 2020 season with an 11–5 record under head coach Bruce Arians. Prior to this, the team had not won a playoff game since Super Bowl XXXVII in 2003 and had not made the playoffs since 2007–08. The team also recorded only three winning seasons since 2008 and had gone 7–9 the previous year.

During the 2020 off-season, the BUCS chose not to re-sign quarterback Jameis Winston, whom they selected first overall in 2015. To replace Winston, they made arguably the biggest off-season acquisition by signing 20-year veteran Tom Brady, one of the NFL's most decorated players. The signing marked the first time that Brady would play for a team other than the New England Patriots, where he was considered the offensive engine of the franchise's dynasty. Tight end Rob Gronkowski, Brady's teammate in New England and considered one of the greatest in his position, was lured out of retirement and acquired through a trade with the Patriots. Further off-season acquisitions included running back Leonard Fournette, running back LeSean McCoy, and placekicker Ryan Succop. In the 2020 NFL Draft, Tampa Bay bolstered their offensive line by selecting tackle Tristan Wirfs 13th overall. After Week 6, they signed accomplished wide receiver Antonio Brown.

The Buccaneers offense was ranked seventh in league yards (6,145) and third in points scored (492). The 43-year old Brady threw for 4,633 yards and 40 touchdowns, 12 interceptions and rushed for three touchdowns. His main targets were Mike Evans who caught 70 passes for 1,001 yards and 13 touchdowns, Chris Godwin who caught 65 passes for 840 yards and seven touchdowns, and Rob Gronkowski who caught 45 passes for 623 yards and seven touchdowns. Brady also had other receivers to go to with Scotty Miller (33 passes, 501 yards and three touchdowns), Antonio Brown (44 catches, 483 yards and four touchdowns), and Cameron Brate (28 catches, 282 yards and two touchdowns). Ronald Jones was the team's leading rusher with 978 yards and seven touchdowns, while also catching 28 passes for 165 yards and another touchdown. Leonard Fournette also added 367 rushing yards and six touchdowns, while also hauling in 36 passes. Kicker Ryan Succop ranked sixth in the NFL with 136 points, making 28-of-31 field goal attempts.

The Buccaneers defense was ranked sixth in the league in yardage allowed (5,234). The defensive line was anchored by defensive ends Ndamukong Suh (six sacks) and Jason Pierre-Paul, the team's lone Pro Bowl selection (91⁄2 sacks, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries). The team also had linebackers Devin White (140 tackles and nine sacks) and Shaquil Barrett (eight sacks and two force fumbles). Cornerback Carlton Davis led the team with four interceptions, while rookie safety Antoine Winfield Jr. added 94 tackles, one interception, and three sacks.

Playoffs

The Kansas City Chiefs won the AFC West division title for a fifth consecutive year and the top seed in the AFC playoffs with a league-best 14–2 record. After clinching a first-round bye, the Chiefs defeated the Cleveland Browns 22–17 in the Divisional round to send them to their third straight AFC Championship Game. They then won 38–24 over the Buffalo Bills for their second straight Lamar Hunt Trophy.

Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished as the fifth seed and second place in the NFC South with an 11–5 record, losing a tiebreaker with the New Orleans Saints. They were the first team under quarterback Tom Brady to reach the playoffs as a wild card. In the Wild Card Round, the Buccaneers defeated the Washington Football Team 31–23, to advance to the divisional round against the Saints, who had swept them in the regular season. Tampa Bay then defeated New Orleans 30–20 to advance to the NFC Championship Game. The Buccaneers then upset the top-seeded Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game 31–26 advancing to the Super Bowl. They also became the first team to make the Super Bowl as a Wild Card team since the 2010–11 Green Bay Packers. Tampa Bay became the first team to play and win a Super Bowl in its home stadium, and only the third to play in their home metro area (alongside the 1979–80 Los Angeles Rams and 1984–85 San Francisco 49ers). In addition, the Buccaneers became only the fifth team to win three road games to advance to the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl Pregame News

The Buccaneers were the designated home team for Super Bowl LV, as the home team alternates between the two conferences annually. The fact that the Buccaneers were designated as the "home" team in their home stadium is a coincidence. As the designated home team, the Buccaneers elected to wear their white jerseys with pewter pants. The Chiefs wore their red jerseys with white pants.

Even though the game was played in the Buccaneers' home stadium, the league treated this as a neutral site game, not allowing the Buccaneers to fire the cannons from the stadium's signature pirate ship. The cannons are normally fired after every scoring play and when the offense enters the red zone. The cannons were only fired during player introductions and after the end of the game within the stadium, however, the Tampa Bay Fanatical Fans were hosting watch parties surrounding the partially filled stadium bringing portable cannons to continue the long standing tradition of cannon fire that could be heard within the stadium.

Gambling establishments had the Chiefs as three-point favorites and projected 57 points scored.

The Chiefs and Buccaneers played each other during the regular season. The Chiefs won the Week 12 game in Tampa, 27–24. This marked the 14th time the Super Bowl featured a rematch of a regular season game and the first time this has happened since Super Bowl XLVI in 2012.

It is the first time that both Super Bowl starting quarterbacks – Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes – have won the AP NFL MVP and Super Bowl MVP awards, and the first time that the two most recent Super Bowl MVP holders are facing off in the title game. As Brady is Mahomes' senior by eighteen years some have billed this as Michael Jordan versus LeBron James.

Since the Buccaneers reached the Super Bowl, Tampa was nicknamed "Champa Bay", as all three of the area's major professional sports teams made their league's championship round during the past five months; the Tampa Bay Lightning won the 2020 Stanley Cup Finals while the Tampa Bay Rays lost the 2020 World Series.

Chiefs linebackers coach, Britt Reid, the son of head coach Andy Reid, was involved in a car accident on February 4, 2021. Two young children were injured in the crash. Reid admitted to consuming two to three alcoholic drinks and being on Adderall, a prescription medication, while driving. He did not coach in the game and his child awoke from a comma a few days later.

Television, Media & Entertainment Coverage

United States

Super Bowl LV was televised by CBS. Although NBC was to air this game under the current rotation, they traded the game to CBS in exchange for Super Bowl LVI, which falls during the 2022 Winter Olympics and is the first to be scheduled during an ongoing Olympic Games (this also upholds a gentleman's agreement between the NFL's broadcasters not to counterprogram the Super Bowl, as NBC also holds the U.S. broadcast rights to the Olympics). CBS will, to an extent, also benefit from holding rights to the Super Bowl in the same year that it holds rights to the NCAA Final Four, which is cycled with WarnerMedia Entertainment channels on a two-year cycle with TBS, as well as the AFC Championship Game in primetime, which contractually alternates between afternoon and primetime on a two-year cycle with the NFC Championship Game on Fox.

CBS used 120 cameras in total, including ten 4K cameras, two 8K cameras, a crane camera, a Trolley Cam running parallel with the field, and two Sony Venice cameras that were used to produce cinematic and "3D-like" scenes reminiscent of video games. Production was decentralized due to COVID-19 protocols, with some production duties being conducted remotely from the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City and at individual employees' homes. CBS officially introduced a rebranding of the CBS Sports division during Super Bowl LV, as part of a larger brand unification process between the CBS network's main divisions.

VIDEO: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2020/21 NFL Season Journey Video!

Building upon its involvement in a youth-oriented broadcast of one of the Wild Card games, Nickelodeon contributed family-oriented social media content, including "Nick-ified" highlight videos with similar augmented reality effects to the aforementioned Wild Card broadcast. These "slime-lights" were also featured during a highlights package on CBS at halftime. Nickelodeon also produced a half-hour preview special for the game to air on the channel, and an NFL-themed edition of its game show Unfiltered as a segment during The Super Bowl Today.

As since Super Bowl 50 when CBS holds the rights, ESPN Deportes aired a Spanish-language broadcast.

Ratings

Around 91.6 million viewers watched Super Bowl LV on linear television, an 8% decline over Super Bowl LIV and the least-watched game since 2006. CBS reported a total of 96.4 million viewers when combined with viewership of the Spanish-language broadcast and digital platforms, a 5% year-over-year decline overall. CBS reported an average of 5.7 million streaming viewers per-minute, a 69% increase year-over-year that made it the most-streamed Super Bowl to-date.

Advertising

The estimated cost of a 30-second commercial at Super Bowl LV remained steady with 2020, with CBS reportedly charging around $5.5 million. The economic impact of COVID-19 prompted some brands to skip the game, including Avocados from Mexico, Budweiser (who donated the airtime it purchased to the Ad Council for public service announcements regarding COVID-19 vaccination; Budweiser parent company Anheuser-Busch would still air ads for its other brands during the game, with a total purchase in line with that of Super Bowl LIV), Coca-Cola, Hyundai, and Pepsi (focusing more on its halftime show sponsorship).

Companies such as DraftKings, Fiverr, Logitech, and Vroom made their Super Bowl debut as advertisers. Robinhood, which had recently gained mainstream media attention due to the GameStop short squeeze, aired its first Super Bowl commercial at the game. Reddit ran a five-second ad in nine of the top ten media markets, saying that was all it could afford.

Amazon Studios and Universal Pictures all aired commercials for upcoming films during the game, including Coming 2 America and Old. Disney aired commercials for its upcoming films and Disney+ series. CBS promoted the upcoming relaunch of its subscription streaming service CBS All Access as Paramount+.

International

In Canada, CTV and TSN televised this game in English and RDS in French. As with the 2020 edition, CTV invoked simultaneous substitution over U.S. network signals (including ads) distributed in Canada, as a CRTC ban on such substitutions during the Super Bowl had been overturned by a December 2019 Supreme Court of Canada decision.

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the game was televised on the free-to-air channel BBC One and paid-subscription channel Sky One (as well as its sister channels Sky Sports Main Event and NFL). It was carried on radio via BBC Radio 5 Live. In Germany, Austria and Switzerland, free-to-air channel ProSieben broadcast the event through its ran format. In Belgium and Portugal the game was televised by paid-subscription channel Eleven Sports.

Subscription streaming platform DAZN also streamed the Super Bowl in several countries including Canada, Germany, and Japan.

Entertainment

Pre-game ceremonies

A special pre-game concert for the invited health care workers attending the game—the TikTok Tailgate—was held in the afternoon prior to Super Bowl LV, and was headlined by Miley Cyrus who brought out Joan Jett and Billy Idol for parts of the show. Portions were aired during CBS's pre-game show, while the full concert was streamed on the TikTok app. While performing her song "Wrecking Ball", Cyrus broke down and said that it "never gets easier".

Alicia Keys performed "Lift Every Voice and Sing," considered to be the Black National Anthem. R&B singer H.E.R. performed "America the Beautiful", and country music singer Eric Church and R&B singer Jazmine Sullivan performed "The Star-Spangled Banner". This was the second time that the national anthem (The Star-Spangled Banner) was sung as a duet in a Super Bowl, the first time being in 2006.

National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman recited an original poem recognizing the game's three honorary captains participating in the coin toss ceremony: Los Angeles teacher Trimaine Davis, Tampa nurse Suzie Dorner and Marine veteran James Martin.

Halftime Show

The halftime show was headlined by the Weeknd. Dave Meyers was the show's executive producer, while Roc Nation produced and creatively directed. Additionally, Hamish Hamilton directed the performance. The show featured a number of the Weeknd's hit songs, including "Can't Feel My Face", "Earned It", and "Blinding Lights", among others.

It was reported that the Weeknd spent US$7 million of his own money on the show, which featured men dressed in all black with red jackets and bandages on their face as backup dancers. The halftime show garnered mixed reviews from critics, noting that while the logistical side of the performance was impressive, the lack of guest performers and the poor audio mixing were heavy drawbacks to the occasion.

Super Bowl Game Summary

FIRST HALF

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS 21–6 HALFTIME LEAD: Kansas City won the coin toss and deferred possession to the second half. The opening kickoff from Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker was returned to the Tampa Bay 24-yard line. The Buccaneers' opening drive stalled to a three-and-out, and the resulting Bradley Pinion punt was downed at the Kansas City 33-yard line. The Chiefs' first drive ended similarly, with the offense able to gain only one first down and Tommy Townsend's punt resulting in a touchback. Tampa Bay's second drive started with a promising 13-yard rush by Ronald Jones II, but stalled from there and resulted in another punt by Pinion, this one downed at the Chiefs' 38-yard line. Kansas City's ensuing drive took them 31 yards in eight plays, culminating in the first points of the game: a 49-yard field goal by Butker. On the next drive, Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette rushed four times for 26 yards on an eight-play, 70-yard drive that ended on Tom Brady's eight-yard touchdown pass to Rob Gronkowski, giving Tampa Bay a four-point lead. This was the 13th postseason touchdown pass from Brady to Gronkowski, setting a new record, which they had previously shared with Joe Montana and Jerry Rice. It was also the first time in Brady's 10 Super Bowls that he threw a touchdown pass in the first quarter. The Chiefs' next drive, which started on their own 37-yard line, ended in a three-and-out, and the Buccaneers took over on their own 30-yard line following the punt.

On their first drive of the second quarter, Brady's 31-yard completion to Mike Evans gave Tampa Bay a first and goal at the Chiefs six-yard line. However the Bucs were only able to reach the Chiefs' one-yard line with their next three plays, and Ronald Jones II was stopped short of the goal line on a fourth down rushing attempt (a ruling that was challenged by Tampa Bay and upheld), giving the ball over on downs to Kansas City. The Chiefs were unable to capitalize off of the stop. The Chiefs' Tommy Townsend punted deep into Tampa Bay territory, but Kansas City was flagged for a holding call and had to punt again. Townsend's follow-up punt went out-of-bounds at the Chiefs' 38-yard line, for a net of only 29 yards. On the next drive, Brady threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Gronkowski, increasing the Buccaneers' lead to 14–3. The Buccaneers' drive was aided by two significant penalties – first, an interception by the Chiefs' Tyrann Mathieu was negated by defensive holding call. Later, after Kansas City stopped the Buccaneers on third down, the Chiefs' Mecole Hardman was called for offsides during the ensuing field goal attempt, giving the Buccaneers a first down as a result of the five-yard penalty. Kansas City responded by moving the ball 61 yards in 10 plays, with Patrick Mahomes completing three passes to Travis Kelce for 36 yards and rushing for 11. Butker finished the possession with another field goal, this from 34 yards, making the score 14–6. Tampa Bay's final first half drive began on their own 29-yard line with just over a minute on the clock, and increased their lead to 21–6 with a five-play, 71-yard drive, the longest a 15-yard catch by Fournette. Brady finished it with a one-yard touchdown pass to Antonio Brown with six seconds to play. Again, Tampa Bay was aided by penalties – in particular a 34-yard pass interference call against Bashaud Breeland who was covering Evans, and an eight-yard pass interference call against Mathieu in the end zone. All told, in the first half the Chiefs were penalized eight times for 95 yards – the most penalties called on any team in one half in any game of the 2020–21 NFL season, while the Buccaneers were flagged for one five-yard penalty. At halftime, the Buccaneers led the Chiefs 21–6.

VIDEO: Super Bowl LV First Half highlights

SECOND HALF

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS 31–09 GAME LEAD & CHAMPIONS: The second half began with a kickoff by Pinion, which was returned to the Chiefs' own 19-yard line. On the next play, Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for a 26-yard gain. Edwards-Helaire also had a 10-yard run on the drive, which went for 47 yards in seven plays and concluded with a 52-yard field goal, Butker's third of the game, making the score 21–9. Tampa Bay stormed right back with a six-play, 74-yard drive, featuring a 25-yard completion from Brady to Gronkowski. On the next play, Fournette's 27-yard touchdown burst increased the Bucs lead to 28–9. Following a touchback, Kansas City began their drive on their own 25-yard line, but an interception by Antoine Winfield Jr. at the Chiefs' 45-yard line gave Tampa Bay the ball back. Despite the fact that the Buccaneers were only able to gain eleven yards on their next eight plays, they were able to capitalize on the turnover, as Succop ended the drive with a 52-yard field goal, increasing their lead to 31–9. On the next drive, Tampa Bay forced a turnover on downs at their own 11-yard line with 13:43 left in the game, stuffing a running play for a one-yard gain and then forcing Mahomes to throw three straight incompletions.

The Chiefs defense forced Tampa Bay to punt for just the third time, allowing their offense to take the ball at their own eight-yard line. They got the ball across midfield, but turned the ball over to Tampa Bay on downs at the Bucs' 27-yard line. The Buccaneers then went three-and-out, and punted the ball to the Kansas City 42-yard line. Kansas City drove the ball to the Buccaneers 10-yard line, but Mahomes threw an interception to Devin White with 1:33 left in the game, which was downed in the end zone for a touchback. Brady then kneeled the ball three times for Tampa Bay, running out the clock, ending the game at 31–9. Brady, who completed 21 of 29 passes for 201 yards and three touchdowns, won the Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Award for a record fifth time in his career, extending his previous record of four.

Fournette was the game's leading rusher with 16 carries for 89 yards and a touchdown, while also catching four passes for 46 yards. Gronkowski, who caught only two passes in Tampa Bay's previous three postseason games, was the team's leading receiver with six receptions for 67 yards and two touchdowns. White had eight tackles (two for a loss), four assists, and an interception. Mahomes finished the day 26-of-49 for 270 yards and two interceptions, while also rushing for 33 yards. Kelce caught 10 passes for 133 yards, setting a new Super Bowl record for receiving yards by a tight end. Out of 110 Super Bowl teams, Kansas City became just the third to finish the game without scoring a touchdown, joining the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl VI and the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII. Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians became the oldest coach to win a Super Bowl, at 68 years and 127 days, while the team became the first to score at least 30 points in four games during the same postseason.

VIDEO: Super Bowl LV MIC-UP Must Watch - Complete Game Highlights
Super Bowl LV Scoring Summary
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS vs. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
Quarter Time Drive Team Scoring Information Score
    Plays Yards TOP     TB KC
1 5:10 8 31 3:23 Chiefs 49-yd field goal by Harrison Butker 0 3
1 0:37 8 75 4:33 Buccaneers Gronkowski 8-yd touchdown reception, Succop field goal 7 3
2 6:05 6 38 2:58 Buccaneers Gronkowski 17-yd touchdown reception, Succop field goal 14 3
2 1:01 10 61 5:04 Chiefs 34-yard field goal by Harrison Butker 14 6
2 0:06 5 71 0:55 Buccaneers Brown 1-yd touchdown reception, Succop field goal 21 6
3 11:26 7 47 3:34 Chiefs 34-yard field goal by Harrison Butker 21 9
3 7:45 6 74 3:41 Buccaneers Fournette 27-yd touchdown run, Succop field goal 28 9
3 2:46 8 11 3:34 Buccaneers 51-yard field goal by Succop 31 9

Statistical Overview

22 weeks later, the 2020 NFL season is finally compleated and as Buccaneers Fans we can sit back and take stock of the history making season we’ve just witnessed. Tom Brady won his 7th ring, this time with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. A truly balanced performance on both sides of the field, the BUCS won the Super Bowl from coin-toss to final kneel. No arm-chair quarterbacking, what-if's or could-of-beens, the statistical recap of the game, exemplify how much of a no-contest this was.

The 31–9 final score gives a solid view of how this game played out. The Chiefs managed 3 points in each of the first 3 quarters and nothing in the 4th, whilst the Buccaneers sailed into a scoring frenzy, scoring 21 points in the first half and 10 in the second. With overview of the Buccaneers season wining percentages, a pattern emerges, as the Buccaneers cross the 90% level well prior the ending of the first half. THe Buccaneers sail into history was charted in the second quarter where they took ownership of the game. Within the first 15 minutes of game play the BUCS win percentage was estamated by 5%, but in the second quarter they Raised-The-Win-Flag percentage from 60% to 90%. Not since the 2014 season finals between the Broncos and Seahawks have we viewed this type domination. The Seahawks had a similar statistical performance, hitting the 90% mark in the second quarter, although Seattle hit the mark considerably earlier, with over 3 minutes on the clock in the first half vs just 30 seconds this season.

The Kansas City Chiefs Defense Cost Them the Game

Aproxamently twenty key plays sealed the Buccaneers victory. With a Win % Added (WPA), which essentially represents how much a single play contributes towards a teams victory. The Buccaneers controlled 14 of the top 20 WPA plays in the game. Four of these plays involved a penalty during the play and all four of the penalties came against the Chiefs. The combined 18.82% in penalties were huge factors, especially given the key moments at which they occurred. 3 of the 4 penalties occurred in touchdown drives, with the first on a 4th & 5 field goal attempt that gave Tampa Bay a first down and eventually led to 7 points as opposed to 3. Essentially awarding a team 18% in WPA and 2 touchdowns cannot go understated here, and obviously contributed towards deciding the winner of the game.

Offense - Highest Win% Added Plays
  • 7.26% - BUCS **Play: (6:15) 3-R.Succop 40 yard field goal is GOOD, NULLIFIED by Penalty, Center-97-Z.Triner, Holder-8-B.Pinion. PENALTY on Chiefs-17-M.Hardm
  • 5.70% - BUCS **Play: (14:46) (Shotgun) 12-T.Brady pass short right to 87-R.Gronkowshi pushed ob at TB 33 for 3 yards (54-D.Wilson). PENALTY on KC-95-C.Johnson
  • 5.22% - KC Play: (12:48) (Shotgun) 15-P.Mahomes scrambles left end ran ob at KC 47 for 11 yards (31-A.Winfield)
  • 5.10% - BUCS Play: (6:11) 12-T.Brady pass deep right to 87-R. Gronkowski for 17 yards, TOUCHDOWN. Penalty on KC-21-B.Breeland, Defensive Holding, Declined
  • 4.51% - BUCS Play: (3:14) 12-T.Brady pass short left to 87-R.Gronkowski for 8 yards, TOUCHDOWN
  • 4.11% - BUCS Play: (:41) (Shotgun) 12-T.Brady pass short left to 87-R.Gronkowski for 8 yards, TOUCHDOWN
  • 4.07% - BUCS Play: (7:51) 73-J.Haeg reported in as eligible. 28-L.Fournette right end for 27 yards, TOUCHDOWN
  • 3.89% - BUCS Play: (2:34) 12-T.Brady pass short left to 84-C.Brate to KC 24 for 15 yards (54-D.Wilson)
  • 3.79% - KC Play: (5:14) 7-H.Butker 49 yard field goal is GOOD, Center-41-J.Winchester, Holder-5-T.Townsend.
  • 3.77% - BUCS Play: (13:06) 73-J.Haeg reported in as eligible. 12-T.Brady pass deep middle to 13-M.Evans pushed ob at KC 6 for 31 yards (49-D.Sorensen).
  • 3.60% - KC Play: (11:31) 7-H.Butker 52 yard field goal is GOOD, Center-41-J.Winchester, Holder-5-T.Townsend.
  • 3.32% - BUCS **Play: (:24) (No Huddle, Shotgun) 12-T.Brady pass incomplete deep left to 13-M.Evens. PENALTY on KC-21-B.Breeland, Defensive Pass Interference.
  • 3.00% - KC Play: (8:03) (Shotgun) 25-C.Edwards-Helaire right guard to KC 48 for 5 yards (45-D.White)
  • 2.89% - BUCS Play: (13:43) 8-B.Pinion punts 40 yards to KC 33, Center-97-Z.Trainer, downed by TB-51-K.Minter.
  • 2.85% - BUCS Play: (:49) (Shotgun) 12-Y.Brady pass short right to 14-C.Godwin to TP 37 for 8 yards (38-L.Sneed)
  • 2.72% - KC Play: (4:46) (Shotgun) 15-P.Mahomes pass short middle to 87-T.Kelce to TB 46 for 12 yards (54-L.David) [96-S.McLendon].
  • 2.54% - BUCS **Play: (7:55) (Shotgun) 12-T.Brady pass short right intended for 13-M.Evans INTERCEPTED by 32-T.Mathieu at KC 30 PENALITY
  • 2.45% - BUCS Play: (11:21) 27-R.Jones right tackle to TB 33 yards (32-T.Mathieu).
  • 2.24% - KC Play: (6:51) (Shotgun) 25-C.Edwards-Helaire up the middle to TB 35 for 6 yards (33-J.Whitehead)
  • 2.15% - BUCS Play: (9:55) 12-T.Brady pass short middle to 28-L.Fournette to TB 44 for 12 yards (56-B.Niemann).
The Chiefs Receivers Just Didn't Show Up!

When viewing basic scores, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce were comparable. These two main Chiefs players had more yards than the entire Buccaneers receiving group combined, but this fails to account for their situational performance. Way too many catchable passes were dropped by the Chiefs throughout the game and the EPA stats: xYAC EPA (KC 29.98) [BUCS 20.06] - Completed YAC EPA (KC 15.02) [BUCS 18.27] - Air Yards EPA (KC 31.06) [BUCS 7.94], give us a clear understanding of the effect this had. Hill had 73 yards in the game, but his overwelming incomplete passes failed to move the sticks on multiple occasions was a damaging performance against the EPA than a positive one. When you compare Kelce’s stats and Leonard Fournette’s, Fournette had 1/3 of Kelce’s receiving yards with 0 touchdowns, but contributed a slightly better total EPA. A significant effect was the key-timing in game play the incomplete passes were. Multiple drops simple misses on 3rd downs lead to a much larger penalty on EPA as the Chiefs would have been forced to punt.

xYAC EPA represents the expected points added from expected yards after carry. Expected yards after carry is another situational statistic, calculated from a player’s position at the time of a catch, the speed he is running when he catches the ball and the distance of the nearest defenders. This stat is also calculated for incomplete passes, where it represents the yards a receiver would have expected to run if he had caught the ball.

The Chiefs had a total xYAC EPA of 29.98. This reflects a few things. The direct translation is that the position that Mahomes put his receivers in was a good one, because they had consistent opportunities take the ball further up the field after making catches. It is also a slight indictment on the BUCS backfield or anyone playing in coverage, because they did leave receivers in space. This is not necessarily a bad thing, Todd Bowles’ defense has constantly prioritised pressuring the QBs and his defensive scheme worked perfectly on Sunday, but it does give us some insight as to how the Bucs defend on passing plays.

The Completed YAC EPA being half of xYAC EPA tells us that the receivers were completely missing on Sunday. We have to credit the Bucs defense for how quickly they anticipated passes and chased down receivers, but this is a true reflection of an inability to make something out of chances afforded to you. To put up 60 expected points in air yards and yards after carry and only actually come away with 9 was another significant failure for the Chiefs.

Super Bowl LV post-game celebrations spur COVID concerns

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor issued an executive order, prior gameday, requiring masks to be worn outside in the city's most popular entertainment and recreation areas during Super Bowl festivities and the days following the event. No tailgating was allowed, either, but many dedicated Fans ignored the historic opportunity.

Immediately following the Buccaneers victory, thousands of fans swarmed the streets, celebrating in a large mob despite protocols put in place to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. Revelers were seen jumping on cars, waving flags, hugging each other and breaking social distancing measures. Someone climbed a tree as onlookers observed, as even more partiers came from local bars to line the streets in celebration.

The TOSS Heard Around-the-World

BuccaneersFan Offical World Record Notice:
Longest Vince Lombardi Trophy Pass "COMPLETED"
17'-8" - fwd lateral/shovel pass Q-T.Brady to TE-C.Brate during Super Bowl Boat Parade
Brady-Brate Trophy Pass Wows Bucs' Super Bowl Boat Parade

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and City of Tampa put a fitting pirate end to the team's Super Bowl run with a boat parade. It started along the Hillsborough River, much like the parade put on for the Tampa Bay Lightning's Stanley Cup victory. The flotilla cruised south, past Curtis Hixon Park and wrapped up near Sparkman Wharf. Fans were all along the river wearing masks and socially distancing from others.

Even on the water, it seems the connection between seven-time Super Bowl champion quarterback Tom Brady and his receivers cannot be denied. At one point during the parade, quarterback Tom Brady, cruising in his new multi-million dollar boat, was captured on video tossing the NFL's Lombardi trophy from his boat across the water to another boat carrying Buccaneers players. His completion to shirtless tight end Cameron Brate brought wild cheers from fans and players.

"That was the best catch of my life," Brate said. "Unbelievable. That was the best catch of my life. If I had dropped that? I think I would've had to retire."

The Words ALL BUCS Fans Wanted to Hear

"We coming back -- back-to-back," Barrett told reporters. "That's the plan. I'm coming back next year."

"We just made history in all the world," said linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul. "This means so much to me, I'll do it again. We're gonna do it again."

STATISTICAL COMPARISON
  Bucs KC
First downs 26 22
First downs rushing 12 12
First downs passing 8 7
First downs penalty 6 3
Third down efficiency 4/12 3/13
Fourth down efficiency 0/1 1/3
Total Net yards 340 350
Net Yards Rushing 145 107
Rushing Attempts 33 17
Yards Per Rush 4.4 6.3
Yards Passing 195 243
Passing-Completions/Att 21/29 26/49
Times Sacked-Total Yards 1-6 3-27
Interceptions Thrown 0 2
Punt returns-total yards 0-0 1-0
Kickoff returns-total yards 3-75 3-87
Interceptions-total return yards 2-0 0-0
Punts-average yardage 4-37.5 3-35.7
Fumbles-lost 0 0
Penalties-yards 4-39 11-120
Times of possession 31:23 28:37
Turnovers 0 2
Tampa Bay Leaders
Buccaneers Passing
  C/ATT Yds TD INT Rating
Tom Brady 21/29 201 3 0 125.8
Buccaneers Rushing
  Car Yds TD LG Yds/Car
Leonard Fournette 16 89 1 27 5.6
Ronald Jones II 12 61 0 13 5.1
Tom Brady 4 -2 0 0 -0.5
Scotty Miller 1 -3 0 -3 -3
Buccaneers Receiving
  Rec4 Yds TD LG3 Target5
Ron Gronkowski 6 67 2 25 7
Antonio Brown 5 22 1 16 6
Leonard Fournette 4 46 0 15 4
Cameron Brate 3 26 0 15 3
Chris Godwin 2 9 0 8 4
Mike Evans 1 31 0 31 1
Ronald Jones II 0 0 0 0 1
Joe Haeg 0 0 0 0 1
Tyler Johnson 0 0 0 0 1
Tanner Hudson 0 0 0 0 1
SUPER BOWL LV STARTING LINEUPS
Offense
Buccaneers Position Position Chiefs
Mike Evans WR WR Demarcus Robinson
Rob Gronkowski TE TE Travis Kelce
Donovan Smith LT LT Mike Remmers
Ali Marpet LG LG Nick Allegretti
Ryan Jensen C C Austin Reiter
Aaron Stinnie RG RG Stefen Wisniewski
Tristan Wirfs RT RT Andrew Wylie
Scotty Miller WR WR Tyreek Hill
Chris Godwin WR WR Byron Pringle
Tom Brady (HOF) QB QB Patrick Mahomes
Leonard Fournette RB RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire
Defense
Buccaneers Position Position Chiefs
Ndamukong Suh DL LDE Tanoh Kpassagnon
Rakeem Nuñez-Roches NT LDT Chris Jones
Jason Pierre-Paul ILB RDT Derrick Nnadi
Devin White ILB RDE Frank Clark
Lavonte David ILB LB Anthony Hitchens
Shaquil Barrett OLB LB Damien Wilson
Carlton Davis CB LCB Charvarius Ward
Jamel Dean CB RCB Bashaud Breeland
Sean Murphy-Bunting CB CB L'Jarius Sneed
Jordan Whitehead S FS Daniel Sorensen
Antoine Winfield Jr. S SS Tyrann Mathieu
Super Bowl XXXVII Officials

CLICK HERE: Boat Parade Celebration on the river

Super Bowl LV Officials

Super Bowl LV featured seven officials. Sarah Thomas was the first woman to officiate a Super Bowl. This was the first Super Bowl to have an alternate official for every position on the field since Super Bowl I. It was also the first time the replay official had a backup.

Referee: Carl Cheffers #51 third Super Bowl (XLIX, LI, LV)
Umpire: Fred Bryan #11 third Super Bowl (XLIX, LII, LV)
Down Judge: Sarah Thomas #53 first female Super Bowl officiate
Line Judge: Rusty Baynes #59 first Super Bowl
Field Judge: James Coleman #95 first Super Bowl
Side Judge: Eugene Hall #103 first Super Bowl
Back Judge: Dino Paganelli #105 first Super Bowl
Replay Official: Mike Wimmer - Assisted by: Sean McKee
Video Operator: Mike Wimmer

Alternates:

Referee: Shawn Smith #14
Umpire: Ramon George #128
Down judge: Jerod Phillips #6
Line judge: Mark Steinkerchner #84
Field judge: Tom Hill #97
Side judge: Jabir Walker #26
Back judge: Brad Freeman #88
Replay official: Mark Butterworth

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