Remembering John Madden’s perfect call of Joe Gibbs’ Gatorade shower at SB XXVI
By Jerry Trotta
During a week when Washington Football Team fans could use any reason to be positive, the universe deiced not to cooperate.
On Tuesday, the NFL lost one of its most recognizable faces (and voices) when John Madden passed away at the age of 85.
Madden was a legend to the game in every sense of the word. He has a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame as both a coach and broadcaster.
In the former role, Madden led the Raiders to their first-ever Super Bowl win in 1976 and still owns the highest winning percentage amongst coaches who’ve supervised at least 100 games.
In the latter role, he and Pat Summerall formed what many regard as the greatest broadcast team in NFL history. No matter the play-by-play commentator, though, Madden always offered masterful color analysis.
One of our personal favorite calls of his? How about his beautiful narration of Joe Gibbs’ celebratory Gatorade shower at Super Bowl XXVI, Washington’s third world championship in the span of a decade?
Remembering John Madden’s call of Joe Gibbs’ Gatorade Shower after Washington won Super Bowl XXVI.
Just a perfect display of broadcasting.
Thank heavens Brian Mitchell (it had to be B-Mitch!) came through here, because judging by Madden’s reaction he would’ve been heartbroken if Gibbs emerged from the sidelines with just a wet pair of shoes.
If this isn’t the most wholesome call of Madden’s career, good luck finding something else that tops this. Actually, don’t. Given how many highlights he accumulated over his broadcasting career, you might not need to search far and wide.
Nevertheless, this is still iconic. You can play Madden’s gleeful celebration after Gibbs got drenched on repeat for hours and it wouldn’t get old. It just punctuates how much he loved his broadcasting job…and the game of football.
Perhaps Madden was happy to see an old friend become a world champ for the third time in his legendary career.
If you remember, Madden and Gibbs go back to San Diego state, where Gibbs was just getting started as a graduate assistant. During one preseason, Madden, who served as the defensive coordinator at the time, and Gibbs were pinned against one another in an alumni game.
When Gibbs declined to give Madden his play sheet before the game, Madden “fired” him. The very next day, head coach Don Coryell asked Gibbs to join him on the offensive staff. You know what happened after that.
You could imagine the news of Madden’s passing is hitting Gibbs pretty hard. And with that send our deepest condolences to Madden’s loved ones.
Thanks for the memories, legend.