Tampa Bay Buccaneers earn their second Super Bowl victory in history


Olivia Caponiti '23

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers win the Super Bowl for the second time in history.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat last year’s champions, the Kansas City Chiefs, in Super Bowl LV February 7.  The final score tallied 31 to 9 in the Buccaneers’ hometown of Tampa, Florida.  In addition to football, performances from artists such as The Weeknd, Ms. Jazmine Sullivan, and Mr. Eric Church enhanced the annual sporting event that draws approximately 99.9 million viewers nationwide, according to reuters.com.

Last year, the Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV with a 31 to 20 point lead, during which Mr. Patrick Mahomes, the team’s quarterback, carried his team to victory with 286 passing yards and 29 running yards.  This year, the Buccaneers’ quarterback, Mr. Tom Brady, competed in his tenth Super Bowl with his new team.  Mr. Brady won a total of six Super Bowl rings with the New England Patriots, where he played under Coach Bill Belichick for 19 years.  Many predict that 25-year-old Mr. Mahomes has a promising future in the National Football League (NFL), making for a historic battle between these renowned quarterbacks in this year’s championship, according to The New York Times.

“For as much as either player seems to be a representative of his generation, a model to be copied, the truth is the singular brilliance of each cannot be replicated,” New York Times reporter Mr. Ben Shpigel said, according to The New York Times.

Mr. Tom Brady wins his seventh Super Bowl ring with the Kansas City Chiefs. Courtesy of Mr. Ben Liebenberg

The NFL hosted this championship with limited fans due to the coronavirus pandemic.  Only 22,000 fans attended the event at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, leaving two thirds of the stadium’s 65,890 seats unfilled.  These attendees included 7,500 vaccinated healthcare workers from Tampa who attended the game for free, according to si.com.  Some individuals paid to have images of themselves made into cardboard cutouts, which occupied most of the empty seats.  In order to maintain the usual atmosphere of the event, noise-making machines simulated a loud crowd of fans in the stadium and on television.

Before the game, Miss Amanda Gorman, who participated in President Joseph R. Biden’s inauguration, became the first poet to perform during the Super Bowl, according to The New York Times.  In her poem, she honored essential workers and their work amid the coronavirus pandemic.  Ms. Sarah Thomas also made history as the first woman referee to officiate a Super Bowl, according to deadline.com.  Additionally, country singer Mr. Church and soul singer Ms. Sullivan sang a duet of the “Star-Spangled Banner” to celebrate the commencement of the longstanding American tradition.

The Chiefs won the pregame coin toss and decided to kick-off, giving the Buccaneers possession of the ball at the beginning of the game.  In the first ten minutes, the teams fought a defensive battle with no points on the board.  The Chiefs’ kicker, Mr. Harrison Butker, then scored a 49-yard field goal with five minutes and 14 seconds left in the first quarter, putting the Chiefs ahead three points.  With 37 seconds left, Mr. Brady connected with Mr. Robert Gronkowski, the Buccaneers’ tight end, to score a touchdown, making the score 7 to 3, according to sportingnews.com.

In the second quarter, the Buccaneers attempted a touchdown on fourth down but came up short, leaving them scoreless.  Mr. Mahomes faced immense pressure from defensive players because two of his starting linemen contracted injuries, according to usatoday.comAs a result, the Chiefs struggled to get their offense to succeed, according to kshb.com.  When the Buccaneers kicked a field goal with approximately six minutes until halftime, the referees called an offsides penalty on the Chiefs’ defense, giving the ball back to the Buccaneers on first down.  Mr. Rob Gronkowski scored a touchdown one play later, putting the Buccaneers ahead with a score of 14 to 3.  The Chiefs then scored a field goal with one minute remaining in the quarter.  The Buccaneers mounted a quick drive to the end zone, finishing with a touchdown pass to Mr. Antonio Brown and maintaining their lead at halftime with a score of 21 to 6.

Mr. Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, professionally known as The Weeknd, performed a variety of his songs during halftime.  The Weeknd sang his most popular hits such as “Can’t Feel My Face” and “Blinding Lights.”  Despite the absence of a guest performer, his presence and energy, along with bright lights and fireworks, filled up the stage.  During his song medley, backup dancers wore COVID-19 face masks in addition to plastic surgery bandages on their faces to demonstrate the superficial standards of Hollywood, according to wkrg.com.

Junior Charlotte Marvin participates in the theatrical productions at Sacred Heart Greenwich and is a member of the Madrigals, the school’s choral group.  She is also an avid fan of The Weeknd and his music.  Charlotte spoke about all aspects of The Weeknd’s Super Bowl halftime performance.

The Weeknd performs alongside back-up dancers in Super Bowl LV.  Courtesy of Mr. Chris O’Meara

“I thought The Weeknd not only made the best out of the circumstances at the super bowl but I also thought his show was one of the best I’ve ever seen,” Charlotte said.  “Although the audio received some bad reviews in the beginning, I think I really respect him because he performed 100% live and that is why it was so different. He also brought his own sound and spent his own money to create something that looked like an artistic piece which no other performer has truly done.  The choreography, camerawork, and the messages within the performance were all amazing.”

To begin the second half, the Chiefs received the ball during kick-off.  Mr. Butker scored his team’s third field goal of the night at 57-yards.  The Buccaneers’ running back, Mr. Leonard Fournette, responded with a 27-yard rushing touchdown.  By the end of the third quarter, the score was 31 to 9 after the Buccaneers scored a final field goal.  Mr. Mahomes also threw two interceptions in the second half.

The Chiefs failed to gain yardage throughout the entire game, forcing them to punt on almost every third down, according to gctelegram.com.  The fourth quarter was a scoreless battle during which the Chiefs struggled to gain momentum and get points on the board, leading the Buccaneers to secure their victory of Super Bowl LV with a final score of 31 to 9.  Mr. Brady spoke about the confidence of his team when going into this seemingly difficult competition.

“Really, all year, we believed in ourselves,” Mr. Brady said, according to usatoday.com.  “Our coaches believed in us, we believed in ourselves. We were going up against a great team tonight, and I’m just happy we got the job done.”

Featured Image by Olivia Caponiti ’23