TAMPA, Fla. – Home cooking, a stingy defense, and of course, more magic from Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski, allowed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to dethrone the Kansas City Chiefs as Super Bowl champions.
For the second time in franchise history, Tampa Bay is on top of the National Football League thanks to a 31-9 win over the defending champion Chiefs in Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Sunday.
Tampa Bay made history two weeks ago by becoming the first team in the Super Bowl era to advance to the game in the same year its stadium was the host site, and the Buccaneers sure played like they were in the comforts of home.
Taking advantage of the fact Kansas City was playing without its two starting tackles along the offensive line, a vaunted Buccaneers’ pass rush provided constant pressure on Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
As a result, Tampa Bay held Kansas City to no touchdowns and way below its average of 29.6 points per game.
Mahomes finished just 26-of-49 passing for 270 yards, two interceptions and was running for his life seemingly on every play.
After winning Super Bowl titles together for the New England Patriots, Brady and Gronkowski revived their big-game magic for the Buccaneers.
The two hooked up for an 8-yard touchdown pass that gave Tampa Bay a 7-3 lead with 37 seconds left in the first quarter, and then for a 17-yard touchdown pass with 6:05 remaining in the second quarter to give the Buccaneers a 14-3 lead.
The second of those scores was set up after the Chiefs lined up offsides on a Tampa Bay field-goal attempt, giving the Buccaneers a first down.
Brady finished 21-of-29 passing for 201 yards and three touchdowns.
After the Chiefs closed within 14-6 on a 34-yard field goal by Harrison Butker with 1:01 left in the first half, the Buccaneers didn’t sit on the ball in the final minute of the half.
Being aggressive and forcing Kansas City into defensive penalties, Tampa Bay drove the field and took a 21-6 lead with six seconds left in the first half on a 1-yard touchdown pass from Brady to Antonio Brown.
Kansas City got points on its first drive of the second half, closing to within 21-9 on a 52-yard field goal by Butker with 11:26 left in the third quarter.
But Tampa Bay had an answer.
With ease, the Buccaneers drove 74 yards in six plays and took a 28-9 lead on a 27-yard touchdown run by Leonard Fournette with 7:45 remaining in the third quarter.
Tampa Bay then extended its lead to 31-9 with 2:46 left in the third on a 52-yard field goal by Ryan Succop, and by that time was well on its way to a second Super Bowl title.
Tampa Bay also won Super Bowl XXXVII over the Oakland Raiders.