Super Bowl V (5): Dallas Cowboys vs Baltimore Colts
Super Bowl V, the fifth edition of the Super Bowl and first modern-era National Football League (NFL) championship game, was an American football game between the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Baltimore Colts and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Dallas Cowboys to decide the NFL champion for the 1970 season. The Colts defeated the Cowboys by the score of 16–13. The game was played on January 17, 1971, at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida, the first Super Bowl game played on artificial turf, on first-generation Poly-Turf.
This was the first Super Bowl played after the completion of the AFL–NFL merger. Beginning with this game and continuing to the present day, the Super Bowl has served as the NFL's league championship game, with the winner of the AFC Championship Game and the winner of the NFC Championship Game facing off in the culmination of the NFL playoffs. As per the merger agreement, all 26 AFL and NFL teams were divided into two conferences with thirteen teams in each. Along with the Colts, the Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers agreed to join the ten AFL teams to form the AFC; the remaining 13 NFL teams formed the NFC. This explains why the Colts represented the NFL in Super Bowl III, but the AFC for Super Bowl V. Baltimore advanced to Super Bowl V after posting an 11–2–1 regular season record. Meanwhile, the Cowboys were making their first Super Bowl appearance after posting a 10–4 regular season record.
The game is sometimes called the "Blunder Bowl" or "Stupor Bowl" because it was filled with poor play, a missed PAT, penalties, turnovers, and officiating miscues. The two teams combined for a Super Bowl record eleven turnovers, with five in the fourth quarter. The Colts' seven turnovers remain the most committed by a Super Bowl champion. Dallas also set a Super Bowl record with ten penalties, costing them 133 yards. It was finally settled when Colts rookie kicker Jim O'Brien made a 32-yard field goal with five seconds left in regulation time. In order to win the game, Baltimore had to overcome a 13–6 deficit after three quarters, and losing their starting quarterback Johnny Unitas in the second quarter. It is the only Super Bowl in which the Most Valuable Player Award was given to a member of the losing team: Cowboys' linebacker Chuck Howley, the first non-quarterback to win the award, after making two interceptions (sacks and tackles were not yet recorded).
The NFL awarded hosting rights for Super Bowl V to the city of Miami ten months earlier on March 17, 1970, at the owners' meeting held in Honolulu.1
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