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1985 ‐ Super Bowl XIX ‐ San Francisco 49ers vs Miami Dolphins

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San Francisco 49ers 38
Miami Dolphins 16

January 20, 1985

Super Bowl XIX was at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California. The NFC champion San Francisco 49ers (18-1) faced the AFC champion Miami Dolphins.

115,936,000 watched the game, the most for a live event. It was also the first time commercials cost a million dollars per minute. The San Francisco Bay area gained $113.5 million.

Dan Marino had the Dolphins leading 10-7 at the end of the first quarter, a record for most points in the opening quarter.

In the second quarter, the 49ers changed to a nickel defense and its defensive line used stunts. San Francisco held Miami to no first downs and one yard for 12 minutes. The 49ers scored three touchdowns to lead 28-10.

But Marino rallied, leading Miami into scoring territory. Miami kicked a 31-yard field goal with 12 seconds left, then recovered the kickoff at San Francisco’s 12 with four seconds remaining. A 30-yard field goal made the halftime score 28-16.

The 49ers dominated the second half, holding the Dolphins scoreless. San Francisco added a 27-yard field goal and an eight yard touchdown pass in the third quarter to secure its second championship.

San Francisco’s 537 total yards was a Super Bowl high. Joe Montana was Super Bowl XIX’s MVP with 24-of-35 passes for a record 331 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for 59 yards and a touchdown. His rushing yards were then the most by a quarterback. Running back Roger Craig set a record with three touchdowns.

The game was the first in which both quarterbacks threw over 300 yards. The teams’ combined 851 yards was a record until broken in Super Bowls XXII and XXXVIII.

Around the World on January 20:

  • President Ronald Reagan was privately inaugurated for a second term (publicly on January 21).

Around the NFL in 1985:

  • March 6 – NBC Radio and the NFL signed a two-year agreement.
  • March 10-15 – Dolphins Stadium received Super Bowl XXIII and the Louisiana Super Dome got Super Bowl XXIV.
  • April 29 – Norman Braman and Edward Leibowitz bought the Eagles.
  • April 30 – Buffalo picked Bruce Smith, a Virginia Tech defensive lineman, the first player in the 50th NFL draft.
  • May 23 – Owners approved a series of overseas preseason games starting in 1986.
  • June 3 – A group headed by Tom Benson, Jr. was approved to buy the Saints.
  • Conversion to videotape from film for coaching study was approved.
  • October 15 – The Pro Bowl was awarded to Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium from 1988-1990.
  • October 27-28 – A weekend record of 902,657 tickets were sold.
  • December 2 – The Chicago-Miami Monday game was watched in over 25 million homes and had the highest rating of any prime-time game in NFL history.
  • December – The NFL had a ratings increase on all three networks. A Louis Harris poll indicated that 59% of fans followed pro football versus 54% who followed baseball.
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