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Wednesday, January 5, 2011
'85 Bears: A dominant playoff opener

By Melissa Isaacson

Sean Lendeta
A punt by the Giants' Sean Landeta traveled minus-7 yards and turned into the Bears' first touchdown.
Editor's note: ESPNChicago.com is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Chicago Bears' dominant 1985 season and victory in Super Bowl XX. We'll have weekly features on each game from '85, video interviews with key figures, photo galleries and more.

In the long and storied history that is New York Giants football, Jan. 5, 1986 is not a date anyone in the organization cares to remember.

"It was not," says former Giants center Bart Oates, "my most pleasant day."

Oates, who would go on to win three Super Bowls with the Giants and the San Francisco 49ers, had to endure not just the 21-0 shellacking handed out by the Bears at Soldier Field in the first round of the playoffs. He also had to suffer the indignity of the Bears' six sacks on quarterback Phil Simms for minus-60 yards, and was forced to watch his long snap to punter Sean Landeta -- albeit upside-down -- wind up a whiff that landed in the arms of Bears' Shaun Gayle, who had to travel just 5 yards into the end zone for the first score of the game.

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