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The Real MVP of Super Bowl XXII?

Posted by Matt Terl on January 28, 2009 – 4:51 pm

The MVP of Super Bowl XXII was Doug Williams, of course — and rightly so. All he did was shake off an injury (and a day-before-the-game root canal), put behind him an entire week’s worth of stupid questions about being the first black quarterback to start a Super Bowl, and lead his offense to one of the single greatest quarters of football ever played.

Here’s his statline for that quarter, just in case you’ve forgotten: 9 of 11 for 228 yards and FOUR touchdowns. In one quarter. So, yeah, he justifiably was the MVP.

But the SI.com article I linked to in the last post contained an interesting anecdote that deserves spotlighting. Apparently Nils Lofgren, guitarist for Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band, tells a story that argues suggesting that maybe Springsteen himself should’ve been the Redskins MVP:

Nils Lofgren has a rarity. He has a Bruce Springsteen football story. As Liz rightly points out, Springsteen is not a football fan. Baseball is his thing, even if he made that regrettable “speedball” word choice in his song Glory Days. Lofgren, though, remembers watching Super Bowl XXII with Bruce. They were at some party, Lofgren doesn’t even remember who hosted it. What he does remember is that it was Washington playing Denver, and everyone in the room except Nils was rooting for the Broncos. Nils grew up in Washington, and he remains a fanatical Redskins fan. He’s such a big football fan that, for years, he played the music for John Madden’s All-Madden Team show.

Well, you might remember, Denver led that Super Bowl 10-0 after the first quarter. Everyone was ripping Lofgren. They were all trying to get him to make bets. And then, all of a sudden, Bruce spoke up.


“Bruce was on the fence, you know?” Lofgren said. “He was just there for the party, he’s a nosh and beer guy. But everyone was destroying me, they all wanted to make a bet. And Bruce watches all this, and all of a sudden he said, ‘I’ll tell you what, I’m with Nils. We’ll take the bet.'”

Washington scored 35 points in the second quarter and went on to destroy Denver.

“It’s Bruce,” Lofgren said gratefully. “Anything he touches …”

Now, that’s not actually enough evidence to warrant stripping Doug Williams of his trophy, but I feel comfortable suggesting that it pushes one-hit-wonder running back Timmy Smith down to #3 on the list of people responsible for that win.


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