Joe Montana. Tom Brady. Bart Starr. Reggie White. Franco Harris. Dwight Smith.

Dwight Smith?

When it comes to Super Bowl lore, former Bucs defensive back Dwight Smith’s name is on the list of Top 53 Super Bowl players of all time. And as it should be. This according to USA Today and thousands of Bucs fans who saw Smith help the Buccaneers defense dominate the Oakland Raiders and win the team’s one and only championship in January of 2003.

Most feel Smith should have won the Most Valuable Player that game, but by the times he had crossed the end zone with his second Rich Gannon interception late in the fourth quarter, the voting had already taken place. Safety Dexter Jackson took home the new car and got the parade at Disney.

Technically two other Bucs players, made the list, as Doug Williams and Steve Young also made appearances on the compilation from USA Today’s Nate Davis, but both did it wearing different uniforms. While Jackson, along with Simeon Rice, Michael Pittman, Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks all had great games in the 48-21 romp of the Raiders, the former Akron Zip’s performance had the greatest individual accomplishment that afternoon in San Diego.

And while Ronde Barber’s NFC Championship game interception against the Eagles the week before is the greatest play in team history, Smith’s two trips to the end zone put an exclamation point on a season that many Bucs fans who suffered through the early days, never thought would come.

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Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]

10 COMMENTS

  1. Derrick Brooks’ pick six clinched the game though!
    https://youtu.be/L36-V18rDOY

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    • The game was over with the pick 6 or not

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  2. The Barber int. Against Philly in playoffs was best Bucs play of all time IMO!

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    • Still gives me chills! I swear I see a water bottle thrown on the field around the 20 yard line.

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    • [email protected]#$ the Probowl I’m going to the Superbowl priceless statement for the man that snubbed.

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  3. Question for whoever might know……has any other defensive player scored 12 points in a Super Bowl?

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    • Um, NO…….

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  4. What’s most interesting to me about the Smith election is that he was even considered by national media. He wasn’t a big name on a defense filled with big names and he wasn’t voted MVP of the game. Arguably, Simeon Rice could have been MVP also. In my opinion, his selection was thoughtful and true.

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  5. Our Defense scored more points than the Vaunted Oakland Raiders Offense. It was incredible.

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  6. I agree, Simeon Rice should have been the MVP of that fantastic game. He set the tone early with his sack of Rich Gannon. Brooks’ interception was “the dagger”. Dwight Smith and Dexter Jackson deserve recognition for just destroying the Raiders’ vaunted offense. It was truly a team victory as there were many MVP’s that evening.

    It’s hard to believe it was 16 years ago yesterday my family and I were in San Diego cheering for our Bucs. Wife in a walking boot after having surgery for a broken ankle. Raiders fans in shock. What a priceless memory.

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