Chuck Noll - 1974


From the 1974 media guide:

The first oneIn the first five years of his head coaching career, Chuck Noll has transformed the Pittsburgh Steelers into one of the strongest teams in the National Football League. He has guided them into the playoffs the past two seasons with a division title and a tie for the title. During this period, the Steelers had a 21-7 regular season record which was the second best in the NFL.

Noll's success with the Steelers did not happen overnight. It was a slow and, at times, painful process in which he seldom deviated from his plan to build a championship team, not just a respectable one.

During his first three years, each season showed improvement over the previous one. In 1972 the Steelers made their big breakthrough with an 11-3 regular season record and their first appearance ever in the playoffs. It marked a six game improvement over the year before and earned Noll the UPI Coach of the Year award in the AFC. It was a long way from the 1-13 mark of his first season in 1969. Last year's 10-4 record upped his lifetime record to 33-37.

A third straight winning season for the Steelers in 1974 will establish another first for Noll. No Steeler coach has ever had three straight winning campaigns.

When Noll came to Pittsburgh he was determined to build his team through the player draft. Just how well he has been able to do this can be seen by looking at the Steeler roster.

The great majority of starters have been players who signed their first professional contracts with Pittsburgh. With few exceptions, the outstanding players on the team are those who were drafted by the Steelers and usually in the high rounds. However, Chuck has also been very successful with low-round choices and free agents. All of his first five number one selections are regulars as well as two players chosen in the tenth round or lower and three free agents.

The exceptional drafts and his ability to communicate with his players have been the keys to Noll's success in Pittsburgh. In a day and age when people have difficulty relating to each other, Noll has been able to close the communication gap and has developed an understanding and respect with his players which has been mutually beneficial. As a result, the Steelers have been a productive, successful team under him.

Other than winning, the most impressive thing about Noll is the way he wins. He is a very low-keyed, unemotional individual who analyses everything he does before doing it and rarely acts on impulse. He is very logical in his approach. The winning situation he has created in Pittsburgh is characteristic of his entire football career, and his team is pretty much a reflection of its coach.


September 15th Steelers 30
Baltimore 0
September 22nd Steelers 35
Denver 35
September 29th Steelers 0
Oakland 17
October 6th Steelers 13
Houston 7
October 13th Steelers 34
Kansas City 24
October 20th Steelers 20
Cleveland 16
October 28th Steelers 24
Atlanta 17
November 3rd Steelers 27
Philadelphia 0
November 10th Steelers 10
Cincinnati 17
November 17th Steelers 26
Cleveland 16
November 25th Steelers 28
New Orleans 17
December 1st Steelers 10
Houston 13
December 8th Steelers 21
New England 17
December 14th Steelers 27
Cincinnati 3
December 22nd Steelers 32
Baltimore 14
AFC Championship Game
December 29th Steelers 24
Oakland 13
Super Bowl X
January 12th Steelers 16   Minnesota 6

Chuck Noll's fifth draft:

  1.   Lynn Swann (WR), South California
  2.   Jack Lambert, (LB) Kent State
  3.   Choice to Oakland
  4.   John Stallworth (WR), Alabama A. & M. (choice from New England)
  4b. Jim Allen, (DB), UCLA
  5.   Mike Webster (C), Wisconsin
  6.   James Wolf (DE), Prairie View (choice from Denver)
  6b. Rick Druschel,(OT), North Carolina State
  7.   Sitterle, Allen (OT), North Carolina State (choice from New England)
  7b. Scott Garske (TE), Eastern Washington State
  8.   Mark Gefert (LB), Purdue
  9.   Tom Reamon (RB), Missouri (choice from Denver)
  9b. Charlie Davis (DT), Texas Christian
10.   Jim Kregel (G), Ohio State (choice from New England)
10b. Dave Atkinson (DB), Brigham Young
11.   Dickey Morton (RB), Arkansas
12.   Hugh Lickiss (LB), Simpson (Iowa)
13.   Frank Kolch (QB), Eastern Michigan
14.   Bruce Henley (DB), Rice
15.   Larry Hunt (DT), Iowa State
16.   Octavus Morgan (LB), Illinois
17.   Larry Moore (DE), Angelo State (Texas)

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