Ranking the New England Patriots first 9 Super Bowl appearances

03 Feb 2002: Quarterback Kurt Warner
03 Feb 2002: Quarterback Kurt Warner /
3 of 6
New England Patriots
New England Patriots Tedy Bruschi /

5. Super Bowl XXXIX

New England Patriots 24, Philadelphia Eagles 21

Of New England’s 5 Super Bowl wins, this one seems to be the least favorite. Perhaps it’s because it is the only one to not come down to an Adam Vinatieri field goal or a crazy comeback.

This was the Patriots third Super Bowl win in four seasons, but it was a really close game for the entirety. The Eagles actually gained the lead first, as L.J. Smith hauled in a TD pass from Donovan McNabb. The Patriots responded though, and they never looked back. David Givens had New England’s first score of the day, and he famously flapped his wing like an eagle to celebrate.

In the second half, New England grabbed their first lead of the game as linebacker Mike Vrabel caught a 2-yard pass from Tom Brady for a score (the second TD reception for Vrabel in a Super Bowl). Brian Westbrook evened things back up at 14, but Patriots running back Corey Dillon had his own plans. He punched the ball over the goal line early in the fourth quarter to put New England up 21-14. Vinatieri added a field goal to make it a 10-point game.

Philly scored again, but it wasn’t enough. With less than a minute to play, McNabb threw his third interception of the game to seal the Patriots win.

4. Super Bowl XXXVIII

New England Patriots 32, Carolina Panthers 29

When the Patriots won the Super Bowl in 2001, some thought it was a fluke. When they returned two seasons later, they proved it wasn’t.

Like Super Bowl XXXVI, this one came down to the wire. Jake Delhomme was great for the Panthers with touchdown passes to Steve Smith, Muhsin Muhammad, and Ricky Proehl. Tom Brady matched him with three touchdown passes of his own. Deion Branch, David Givens, and linebacker Mike Vrabel all caught one.

The touchdown to Ricky Proehl for Carolina tied the game at 29, but they left 1:08 on the clock. That was plenty of time for Brady to put together a game-winning drive. New England drove down the field and put Adam Vinatieri in position for a 41-yard field goal. He nailed it, and the Patriots won their second Super Bowl in franchise history.