In the 48 Super Bowls we've had the pleasure of watching, there have been amazing moments that people relive as some of the greatest in all of Pro Football history. From the catches that have defined the games to defensive stands that have helped teams win titles, the most exciting and memorable plays of the games are always the touchdowns.
From Max McGee’s grab as the Super Bowl's first touchdown way back in 1967 to Doug Baldwin's fourth quarter TD grab in last year’s game, touchdowns always seem to be the biggest highlight of the biggest game of the year.
There has been plenty of Hall of Famers that have crossed the goal line in the Super Bowl, with maybe the most glaring omission being one of the greatest running backs of all-time, Walter Payton. At Super Bowl XX, where the Chicago Bears crushed the New England Patriots, head coach Mike Ditka didn’t realize that Payton hadn’t scored yet, when the score was 37-3 in the third quarter, and instead allowed defensive lineman William “Refrigerator” Perry to barrel in from a yard out.
Ditka says it was the most regrettable moment of his coaching career, showing just how important it is to NFL players to score a touchdown in the Super Bowl. Crossing the goal line in the game that everyone watches can go a long way to making a player's career. Just ask Santonio Holmes.
Today we look back and relive some of those great touchdowns, going back in time to count down the “Top 20 Game Changing Touchdowns in Super Bowl History.”
20 Julian Edelman Super Bowl Winning TD - Super Bowl XLIX
Although this Super Bowl will be remembered for the Seahawks decision to not run the ball on the goal line with Marshawn Lynch and instead run a slant across the middle of the field, the Patriots still needed to get in a position to win the game. Down 24-21, Tom Brady drove the Patriots down the field before hitting Julian Edelman on a three-yard touchdown throw. Edelman ran an ankle-breaking route against Tharold Simon before Tom Brady put the throw right on the money to give the Pats a four point lead.
19 Butch Johnson’s Diving End Zone Grab – Super Bowl XII
18 Swann Burns Dallas for 64-yard Score – Super Bowl X
17 Porter Picks off Peyton To Clinch Saints Win – Super Bowl XLIV
16 Jacoby Jones 108-yard Kickoff Return vs the 49’ers – Super Bowl XLVII
15 Hayden’s Pick-Six Seals the Colts Super Bowl XLI Win – Super Bowl XLI
14 '65 Toss Power Trap' Clinches a Chiefs Title – Super Bowl IV
13 Bruce and Warner Hook Up for a Super Bowl Game Winner – Super Bowl XXXIV
12 Washington’s Fumble Return Evens Up Super Bowl XXVIII – Super Bowl XXVIII
11 Davis’ TD Clinches the Broncos First Title – Super Bowl XXXII
10 Malcolm Smith Puts Denver Away By Halftime – Super Bowl XLVIII
9 Randle El Throws His Way In the Record Books – Super Bowl XL
8 Howard’s Kickoff Return Puts Away The Patriots – Super Bowl XXXI
7 Bradshaw and Stallworth Combine to Top the Rams – Super Bowl XIV
6 The “Raider Screen” Does in the Redskins – Super Bowl XVIII
5 Harrison Goes the Distance to Stun Arizona - Super Bowl XLIII
4 ‘The Diesel’ Rumbles 43 to Help Washington Top the Dolphins – Super Bowl XVII
3 Burress’ Snag Ends the Perfect Season for New England – Super Bowl XLII
2 Montana to Taylor Helps the Niners Beat Cincinnati – Super Bowl XXIII
1 Holmes’ Tip Toe Magic Beats the Cardinals – Super Bowl XLIII
It appeared with two minutes to go in Super Bowl XLIII that the Arizona Cardinals were ready to pull the upset over the Pittsburgh Steelers, as two Larry Fitzgerald fourth quarter scores gave Arizona a 23-20 lead. That’s when former Ohio State wide out Santonio Holmes went to QB Ben Roethlisberger and said he wanted the ball in crunch time. Holmes came through, making four huge grabs, including the game-winner, an amazing tip-toe catch in the back corner of the end zone that was part great throw, part insane catch. Holmes’ great grab gave the Steelers their NFL leading sixth title, and it’s a touchdown worthy to be the best ‘game changer’ of them all in Super Bowl history.
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