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Super Bowl XIII review by Ron Martz of the St. Petersburg Times:

“Finally they played a Super Bowl that was worth all the pre-game hype and was as spectacular as its halftime show. Super Bowl XIII was stylish and sensational, filled with goofs and great plays. It was sixty minutes of the kind of football that the twelve previous games had failed to deliver as the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Dallas Cowboys battered one another all over the ballyard to the delight of millions.

In the end, it was obvious that the black-shirted Pittsburghers were superior to their computerised cousins from Dallas in a 35-31 affair that sent the pro football championship of the galaxy back to the steel mills for the third time.

But while Super Bowl XIII proved that these season-ending extravaganzas can indeed be super, it also disproved a number of football myths, many of which are mouthed with nauseating regularity.

Myth #1: Terry Bradshaw is dumb.

Hopefully this myth will finally be entombed and forgotten forever. Bradshaw proved that he is no dummy by becoming the first quarterback to win three Super Bowl games without a loss.

“I don’t think I had anything to prove, except that I never did play well against Dallas,” Bradshaw said. “I guess I always tried too hard not to lose to Dallas. I was very conservative. But this year I’ve learned that you don’t play well unless you relax and let your abilities go to work for you. I was going to play my game today. I wasn’t going to let the Super Bowl dictate to me. I was going with what got us here.”

And that leads to myth #2: The best teams are those whose coaches call the plays from the sidelines.

Bradshaw is one of the few quarterbacks in the NFL who calls his own plays and he is one of the most successful, year in and year out. In Super Bowl XIII he showed he was much more in control of the game than Dallas’ computerised sideline assistants.

Dallas made all the dumb calls. Like the reverse deep in Pittsburgh territory early in the game that ended in a Drew Pearson fumble recovered by the Steelers.

Bradshaw made all the right calls. “It was a guessing game out there,” said the Cowboys safety Charlie Waters. “And Bradshaw made all the right guesses. Every time we would guess one thing, he would guess another, and he would be right. He really called a great game.”


Dallas players can only turn and watch as Bradshaw gets his pass away

COACH NOLL NOT A FAN OF THE HALFTIME SHOW

“It was just too damned long,” Coach Noll commented on the Super Bowl’s halftime show. “And what happened was that it took us too long to get warmed up again. I sort of feel like I’m an advocate of the game. But what’s happening is that it’s gotten to the point where show business is competing with the game. The game is what draws people into the stadium, not the halftime shows.”

“We’re used to about fifteen minutes and then going right back out on the field. This thing dragged on and on,” he said of the Caribbean carnival. A production which employed hundreds of singers, dancers and musicians and lasted well over half an hour.

“We had guys who were kind of champing at the bit to get out of there, to get after it,” Noll added. “The adrenalin goes for only so long. But I guess it was something that couldn’t be helped.

We came out in the second half (leading 21-14) and Dallas made some adjustments defensively. It took us a while to get a feel for what they were doing. They’d been a lot of man-to-man coverage in the first half. Then they went more to the zones.”

Terry Bradshaw finished with 17 completions from 30 passes to set a Super Bowl record of 318 yards and four touchdowns. After hitting 11 of 18 for 253 yards and three touchdowns in the first thirty minutes, he attempted just three passes with one completion for 9 yards in the first 13 minutes of the third quarter as Pittsburgh’s offense spluttered to a crawl.

“I didn’t think we went conservative particularly,” suggested Coach Noll. “We wanted to get the ball moving on the ground, but the Cowboys were doing a good job against the run. We ended up in the first part of the second half with minus yardage when we were trying to run the ball.”

Coach Noll was already looking ahead to the next season. “I think this football team hasn’t reached its potential yet,” Noll said. “I really believe that. I think every area on our football team has proven itself and any help we can get in the draft in the way of competition I think will serve to spur the veterans we have right now.

I think a winning tradition is important and I think it feeds on itself. It’s an added incentive and it helps the young people coming into an organisation.”

 

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This site last updated February 15th 2019.

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