Super Bowl XI

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Super Bowl XI was an American football game played on January 9, 1977 at the Rose Bowl[2] in Pasadena, California to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion following the 1976 regular season. The American Football Conference (AFC) champion Oakland Raiders (16–1) won their first Super Bowl by defeating the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Minnesota Vikings (13–3–1), 32–14. Oakland gained a Super Bowl record 429 yards, including a Super Bowl record 288 yards in the first half, en route to winning their first Vince Lombardi Trophy.

Raiders wide receiver Fred Biletnikoff had 4 catches for 79 yards that set up three Raider touchdowns and was named the Super Bowl's Most Valuable Player. There have been six wide receivers named MVP in the Super Bowl and Biletnikoff is the only one to not have gained 100 yards in his MVP performance.

Contents

Background

Oakland Raiders

This game marked the second Super Bowl appearance for the Oakland Raiders, who lost Super Bowl II. Two years after their Super Bowl loss, the Raiders hired John Madden as their head coach. Under Madden, the Raiders posted the best overall record for any NFL team in his 8 seasons, 83-22-7. But Super Bowl XI was the first time Madden led his team to a league championship game. They had been eliminated in all 6 of their previous playoff appearances, including 5 losses in the AFC Championship Game.

The Raiders offense was led by quarterback Ken Stabler, who finished as the top rated passer in the AFC, passing for 2,737 yards and 27 touchdowns. His 66.7 completion percentage (194 completions out of 291 attempts) was the second highest in the league. Stabler's main passing weapon was wide receiver Cliff Branch, who caught 46 passes for 1,111 yards (24.2 yards per catch average) and 12 touchdowns. Fred Biletnikoff was also a reliable deep threat, with 43 receptions for 551 yards and 7 touchdowns. And tight end Dave Casper recorded 53 receptions for 691 yards and 10 touchdowns.

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