Westside's Treasure Map
Saturday, February 05 2011 @ 05:40 AM CST
Contributed by: Ore
Contributed by: Ore
Stealers Plus Five Bad Calls...
Pittsburgh Steeler history can be summed briefly as the beneficiary of bad officiating that led directly to the team’s many Super Bowl and Championship victories. The Oakland Raiders, Dallas Cowboys, Seattle Seahawks, Houston Oilers, and the Colts can all confirm that five of the Steelers six Lombardi Trophies came from a lot of help from their twelfth man on the field, the officials. Some may say it was good karma, and others may say it was just dumb luck, but when you understand the billions of dollars in gambling money that swirls around the NFL every decade, it makes you wonder, but I was not born yesterday. The money appears to me to have caught up to this game as it did with boxing before it. I predict that this year’s Super Bowl game will be decided by the officials in favor of the Steelers once again, if it is a close game.
The Steelers as an organization are above reproach, and they have great fans. Their style of football is unquestionably great. But they simply appear to be among the East Coast and even the West Coast’s favorites in the shadow world of gambling. When you start to research it, you don’t have to look too far before you begin to speculate on this. Consider the following bad calls that the Steelers have benefited from in their history, and you tell me if you think these are all just coincidences. If these bad calls don’t make you question, you’re probably a Steeler’s diehard fan and will happily take a win at face value.
Their Legacy of Calls;
Super Bowl XL:
A series of horrifically blown calls by the Officials sent the Seahawks home with a loss in Super Bowl XL. While there were many to choose from, the worst of the bunch had to be a phantom offensive pass interference call in the first quarter that set the whole suspicious officiating display in motion. (The officials later apologized for the rulings in this game, but the Steelers still own the Lombardi Trophy.)
On a pass from the 17-yard line, Seattle’s Darrell Jackson came down with a touchdown catch over Steeler’s safety Chris Hope. But inexplicably, the officials called an offensive pass interference on Jackson? WTF, and let's just say it is still not safe to where Steeler gear in Seattle, WA. The points were taken off the board and Pittsburgh went on to collect yet another Lombardi Trophy.
1980 AFC Championship game
Officials ruled that Houston wide receiver Mike Renfro was out of the end zone on a catch that was clearly inside the end zone at Pittsburgh in the 1980 AFC championship game. Replays show Renfro was obviously in bounds, but officials ruled the pass incomplete or somehow out of bounds; the Steelers went on to a win that sent the team to their fourth Super Bowl. Musician Mike Henderson went on to write a #1 hit song about this call entitled "Wide Receiver." I quote from this song: "I put both my feet down and still I could not get the point. I said the referee must have been smoking a joint." The result of this ruling? Steelers crowned 1980 AFC champs.
Super Bowl XIII:
The Steelers and Cowboys were locked in a tight game when Terry Bradshaw threw a deep ball to WR Lynn Swann. Swann got tangled up with Dallas DB Benny Barnes and the refs called pass interference against Dallas, resulting in a 33-yard gift for the Steelers in a game where every yard was being contested. The replays showed clearly that the players simply got their feet entangled. Momentum can swing dramatically in a game where you feel like your best efforts are being nullified by the officials. This was true in this game and the Steelers stole away with yet another Lombardi Trophy. (Steelers 35--Cowboys 31.) Cowboy fans to this day will tell you they were robbed in this game by bad calls.
The Immaculate Deception:
Was just that. With no time left on the clock, Steeler Franco Harris waltzed into the end zone with a non-catch in this 1972 AFC Divisional playoff game against the Raiders. When the officials were asked about the call, they said they feared for their own safety when the fans rushed the field and the crowd control was lost in Pittsburgh. (Steelers 12--Raiders 7)
1995 AFC Championship Game
The Steelers put together a late drive before halftime and capped it with a short touchdown pass from QB Neil O’Donnell to Kordell Stewart, who played receiver that season. Very obvious for the world to see on the play was the fact that Stewart’s foot touched the back line of the end zone, which means that his catch should have been disallowed (coming back in bounds to make a catch is illegal touching). The refs missed it and the TD stood, while the whole world saw it. (Steelers 20--Colts 16.) Steelers crowned 1995 AFC Champs.
There you have it, folks. Although there are other bad calls that the Steelers have benefited from in their history, this sums it up. Most teams have eleven men on the field. Then there are the Steelers with, what looks to me, to be a twelfth man on the field: the officials, who have been their MVP on many occasions. Go Packers--and any given team on any given Sunday that lines up against what appears to be more than happenstance.
As to the team, itself, the Steelers are a model of success. They are now the New York Yankees of pro football. Despite traditionally being one of the lower paying teams, the owners have always given organizational loyalty and stability to their front office people and to their Coaches. This is a recipe for success. Too bad another owner we all know doesn’t follow these same practices, but in fact does the just the opposite.
Raider On Nation
West Side Pirate
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