Jan. 29, 1995 – San Francisco 49ers 49 vs. San Diego Chargers 26 – Super Bowl XXIX**
Location: Joe Robbie Stadium; Miami Gardens, Fla.
Favorites: 49ers -19.0
MVP: Steve Young
The 1994 season was all about redemption for the Young-led 49ers. San Francisco got a third crack at the Cowboys after losing to Dallas the previous two seasons in the NFC Championship game.
The 49ers hosted the Cowboys at Candlestick Park with a trip to Super Bowl XXIX on the line following a 44-15 win against the Chicago Bears in the divisional round.
A high-scoring first quarter saw the 49ers jump out to an early 21-0 lead behind an Eric Davis pick-six, a 29-yard pass from Young to Ricky Watters and a 1-yard run for William Floyd. Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman had a monster statistical game, throwing for 380 passing yards and two touchdowns, and Michael Irvin caught 12 passes for 192 yards and both scores. Five turnovers, however, proved to be the Cowboys undoing as San Francisco went on to beat Dallas 38-28.
That rivalry clash was far more thrilling than the Super Bowl itself.
San Francisco throttled the San Diego Chargers 49-26 and scored two touchdowns in each of the first three quarters.
The 49ers scored three plays into the game on a 44-yard touchdown pass to Jerry Rice. Watters found the end zone three times in Super Bowl XXIX, twice as a receiver and once on the ground. The versatile running back joined Rice, Roger Craig and Denver Broncos running back Terrell Davis as the only skill players to ever score three touchdowns in a single Super Bowl.
Young won MVP honors for the game. The quarterback passed for 325 yards and set a Super Bowl record with six touchdown passes that still stands today.
Rice caught 10-of-13 targets for 149 yards and three scores. The receiver currently holds Super Bowl records for career receptions (33), career receiving yards (589), career touchdowns (8), single game receiving yards (215) and single game receiving touchdowns (3).
On that day, San Francisco also set an NFL record as the only franchise with five Lombardi Trophies.
S Merton Hanks on playing the Cowboys in a third straight conference championship game:
“There are very few times in your life, I believe, that you can honestly say, ‘Everything you’ve ever worked for has come to this moment, right here, right now. What are you going to do going forward?’”
Hanks on beating the Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX:
“I remember the elation for all of us for finally completing the journey of winning a World Championship. You really didn’t want to leave the field.”
TE Brent Jones on playing the Cowboys in a third straight conference championship game:
“The guys that had experienced the prior two losses, I think, felt it more than anybody else on the team. We knew what was at stake. This was it.”
Jones on beating the Cowboys:
“It was the most remarkable sequence. You saw a team that was so prepared, so focused and so ready to play just come out and attack the Cowboys.”
Young on beating the Cowboys after losing to Dallas the two seasons prior:
“It was like putting a flag on top of Mt. Everest. Dallas had gone down."
Young on winning his first Super Bowl as a starting quarterback:
“In the NFL, so many people focus on quarterbacks. No matter what happens, you’ll have 1,000 reasons why you’re no good and why you can’t do it. Everyone lists them. ‘He can’t win the big game. He can’t lead a team in two minutes.’ It’s like the nature of game where cynics win the day most of the time. So you end up responding to it because that’s the nature of being an athlete. ‘Oh you don’t think I can do it? Well I’m going to prove you wrong.’ I’m going to use that incentive to go achieve something.”