Hardcore fans of the Black and Gold will understand why the Number 1 and 2 greatest Pittsburgh Steelers plays of all time involve a running back catching a pass that wasn’t intended for him, and a quarterback making a tackle on a fumble recovery and return to save a season. "The 50 Greatest Plays in Pittsburgh Steelers History" by Steve Hickoff relives the most unforgettable, extraordinary, gut-wrenching moments, compiled here for the first time.
It all began in 1933 when Arthur J. Rooney, a.k.a. “The Chief”—a tavern owner’s son from Pittsburgh’s North Side, amateur athlete, and most of all sports promoter—committed $2,500 to the upstart National Football League. Rooney’s Depression Era investment marks the beginning of this historical franchise born from steel mills, coalmines, and hard living. Pittsburgh’s first postseason appearance came in the 1947 NFL Eastern Division Championship against the Philadelphia Eagles. Since then the Steelers franchise has won five Super Bowls, starting with the Steel Curtain teams of the 1970s.
Unexpected drama unites the NFL fans of Steelers Nation, and it’s captured in this book. You’re there with offensive Super Bowl standouts Lynn Swann and John Stallworth. You’re toe-to-toe with defensive Hall-of-Famers Jack Ham, Mel Blount, and Jack Lambert. Relive plays such as the Immaculate Reception, Willie Parker’s 75-yard Super Bowl XL run from scrimmage, and a kickoff fumble recovery on the rain-soaked Three Rivers Stadium turf in the 1978 AFC Championship when the Pittsburgh Steelers scored 17 points in 48 seconds.
Want more? Try Pittsburgh kicker Gary Anderson drilling a 50-yard field goal in overtime. Quarterback Mark Malone’s record-setting catch of 90 yards from Terry Bradshaw. John Henry Johnson running for a 45-yard touchdown to lead the Steelers to a 23-7 upset of their rivals, the Browns. Linebacker Andy Russell’s fumble recovery and 93-yard jog for a touchdown to clinch the 1975 AFC Divisional Playoff win. Kordell Stewart connecting on a shovel pass to Jerome Bettis who ran 17 untouched yards for the touchdown and overtime victory. Even Ernie Stautner’s hard-nosed tackle on Giants third-string quarterback and future Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry during a 63-7 Steelers win.
This book, the first of its kind, includes the logic-defying comebacks and tough losses, the dramatic interceptions, fumbles, game-winning field goals, touchdowns, and even one safety, the first in Super Bowl history. There’s plenty for fans to savor in "The 50 Greatest Plays in Pittsburgh Steelers History."
Published by Triumph Books (www.triumphbooks.com), an imprint of Random House, Steve Hickoff's new book is also available from www.amazon.com, and many other online booksellers and retailers.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Posted by Steve Hickoff at Wednesday, August 13, 2008