The Baltimore Ravens, sparked by one of the nastiest defenses in league history, rolled to a Super Bowl victory in just their fifth season in their new home town, beating the New York Giants 34-7 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.
Baltimore easily covered the Super Bowl XXXV spread as a field-goal favorite, and the game, pegged with the lowest total in Super Bowl betting history at 33, played OVER, thanks to three non-offensive touchdowns.
The Ravens went 12-4 during the regular season, winning their final seven games with Trent Dilfer at quarterback. Baltimore then beat Denver, Tennessee and Oakland to send the franchise that just a few seasons previous was known as the Cleveland Browns to the Super Bowl for the first time.
The Giants also went 12-4 during the regular season, winning their last five in a row. They then beat Philadelphia and Minnesota to reach the Super Bowl for the third time in franchise history.
The game itself played out as a defensive struggle, with a half-minute explosion in the third quarter. Baltimore took the early lead when Dilfer hit Brandon Stokley from 38 yards out in the first quarter, and a Matt Stover field goal sent the Ravens into halftime with a 10-0 lead.
Midway through the third quarter Baltimore defensive back Duane Starks picked off New York quarterback Kerry Collins and took it back 49 yards to put the Ravens up 17-0. The Giants' Ron Dixon then got New York on the board, returning the ensuing kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown. But Baltimore got that score right back when Jermaine Lewis returned the following kickoff 84 yards for another touchdown, the third in a 36-second span.
The Ravens then stifled the Giants from there, and added the last 10 points for the 34-7 final.
Baltimore outgained New York 244-152 and won the turnover battle 4-0.
Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, the guts of his team, was named the game's MVP, the sixth time through the first 35 Super Bowls a defensive player won the award.
Baltimore didn't get back to the Super Bowl for 12 seasons, then defeated San Francisco in Super Bowl XLVII, Lewis' last game before retiring.
The Giants returned to the Super Bowl eight seasons later, upsetting New England in Super Bowl XLII.
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