View Full Version : A look back at the Steelers' first Super Bowl

09-12-2009, 11:50 PM
A look back at the Steelers' first Super Bowl
By The Tribune-Review Sunday, September 13, 2009

A weekly look at the 1974 season, the first time the Steelers went on to lift the Lombardi Trophy:

Pardon me

A month into his tenure as 38th President, Gerald Ford granted a full and unconditional pardon to Richard Nixon for any crimes committed in the Watergate scandal. During a broadcast to the nation, Ford said the pardon was in the best interests of the country and that he was trying to "write an end" to the scandal. The decision was a controversial one and led to claims that Nixon and Ford had struck a deal before the former president left the Oval Office.

Snake bitten

With ABC broadcasting live on "Wide World of Sports," daredevil Evel Knievel tried and failed to jump a rocket across the Snake River Canyon in Twin Falls, Idaho. For the stunt, Knievel ditched his signature Harley Davidson in favored of a rocket-powered sky cycle. Despite two failed unmanned practice attempts, Knievel decided to go ahead with the jump. Seconds after his sky cycle cleared the launching ramp, the parachute deployed prematurely. Strong headwinds carried Knievel back into the canyon, where he crashed 600 feet below. Luckily for Evel, he didn't land in the water and he walked away with minor injuries.

Elsewhere this week in 1974

St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Lou Brock surpassed Maury Wills' single-season record of 104 stolen bases. Brock would set the standard of 118 steals before Rickey Henderson broke it in 1982.

Rhoda, a spin-off of the popular Mary Tyler Moore Show that starred Valerie Harper, debuted on Monday nights and was an instant ratings smash.

The Senate passed a bill making 55 mph the permanent national speed limit.

What the Steelers did

After completing a 6-0 exhibition season, the Steelers dismantled the Baltimore Colts, 30-0, in the season opener at Three Rivers Stadium. First-round draft pick Lynn Swann made an immediate impact, catching a 54-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter to give the Steelers a 10-0 lead. Joe Gilliam started at quarterback and completed 17 of 31 passes for 257 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Terry Hanratty mopped up and was 1 of 6 passing. Frank Lewis had the other TD reception, and Franco Harris and Frenchy Fuqua scored on the ground. Colts QB Bert Jones, meanwhile, was held to 100 yards passing on 8 of 17 completions.


Through Sept. 15, 1974

Team: W-L-T PF-PA

Steelers: 1-0-0 30-0

Houston Oilers: 1-0-0 21-14

Cincinnati Bengals: 1-0-0 33-7

Cleveland Browns: 0-1-0 7-33

09-13-2009, 12:08 AM
Thanks for the history...Thats 3 years before i can remember..

09-13-2009, 12:39 AM
Thanks for the history...Thats 3 years before i can remember..

You are welcome. I was a student at the University of Wisconsin at the time. I still remember watching the game as the lone Steeler fan surrounded by unhappy Viking fans. I really rubbed it at half time when if memory serves, the Vikes were -15 yards rushing for the half. At the half the Steelers were leading 2-0 due to a saftey. Franco ran over 150 yards that day. It was Steeler football. Smash mouth defense parried with a strong running game. A absolute defensive gem.

09-13-2009, 09:19 AM
I believe Joe Gilliam was the first Black QB to open start a season-opener in modern NFL history, having won the job when Bradshaw & Hanratty both honored the NFLPA picket-line at St. Vincent's that summer, giving the Staff a chance to evaluate Gilliam's arm & ability


I recall that in Week 2, he threw a (then) team record 51 passes in a 35-35 @ Denver, the first NFL game in history to end in a tie after the League instituted the extra 15 minute period for the '74 season:
it was said that '..... Gilliam thinks a running-play is a screen-pass.....'