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A Press Democrat Blog

Old School

Robert Rubino connects current sports news with the past

Jim Plunkett & the Super Bowl

Why is that when the discussion is about great Super Bowl quarterbacks, Jim Plunkett is rarely, if ever, mentioned? Here’s what Plunkett did as the Raiders starting quarterback in Super Bowl XV and XVIII. Two wins in two games, including MVP in Super Bowl XV. By the way, the Raiders were underdogs in both. Plunkett’s combined statistics for those two Super Bowls: 29 of 46 passes completed (63 percent), 433 yards, four TD passes, zero interceptions. Jim Plunkett was a… Read More »

Bill Walsh vs. Paul Brown

You may know that before Bill Walsh became a three-time Super Bowl-winning coaching legend in San Francisco in the 1980s, he spent eight years (1968-75) as offensive coordinator for the Cincinnati Bengals under legendary head coach Paul Brown. And you may know that Walsh and Brown had a tense relationship and that when Brown, who also was a controlling owner of the Bengals, finally retired from the field, he named longtime crony and offensive line coach Bill Johnson, instead of… Read More »

Role models for NFC West, part 7

Maybe you think the 49ers and the rest of the NFC West are pitiful. Maybe you’re outraged at the thought that the NFC West “champion” can make the playoffs, even with a non-winning record. OK, but there have been underachieving teams in pro sports that suddenly overachieved in the postseason and gave fans quite a show. For example: 2008 Arizona Cardinals. The maligned Cardinals slipped into the playoffs at 9-7. Then, scoring at least 30 points a game, they beat… Read More »

Super Bowl final score: Jets 16, Colts 7

Yeah, I know the Jets aren’t in today’s Super Bowl. Yeah, I know today’s Super Bowl pits Saints vs. Colts. But allow this long-ago Jets fan to say something. When I think of the Colts, it doesn’t matter if it’s Baltimore or Indianapolis, Morrall or Unitas or Manning. It doesn’t matter how many Super Bowls the franchise has won, and it doesn’t matter that it’s 2010 and not 1969. For this long-ago Jets fan, to this day when I think… Read More »

Duane Thomas, existential philosopher

The best Super Bowl-related quote still has to be from Dallas Cowboys running back Duane Thomas, before the 1972 game: “If it’s the ultimate game, how come they’re playing it again next year?” Thomas went on to have a pretty good Super Bowl against the Miami Dolphins, rushing 19 times for 95 yards and one touchdown, and catching 3 passes for 17 yards in the Cowboys’ 24-3 win. In a sense, it turned out to be Duane Thomas’ ultimate game.

Most underrated Super Bowl champ

What team is your pick for the most-underrated Super Bowl champion? Let me know. Here’s mine: The K.C. Chiefs, who beat the Minnesota Vikings, 23-7, In January 1970. The Chiefs were huge underdogs to the Vikings. In the postseason, they beat the defending Super Bowl champion Jets and the Raiders, whom they had lost to twice in the regular season — both on the road, then routed the Vikings, who had been the NFL’s top-rated team in overall offense and… Read More »

Another Colts/Saints link: Gary Cuozzo

In a previous blog, I mentioned running back Joe Don Looney, who played for both the Colts and Saints. Today the Colts-Saints link is quarterback Gary Cuozzo. Cuozzo backed-up Johnny Unitas with the Colts from 1963 through 1966. And he was on the original Saints of 1967, splitting time with Billy Kilmer. Cuozzo played in Super Bowl IV with the Vikings, a 23-7 loss to the K.C. Chiefs. Cuozzo came in for Joe Kapp late in the game, completing 1-of-3… Read More »

Super Bowl trivia

What Super Bowl-winning coach was also head coach of the New Orleans Saints? Answer below.                 Answer: Hank Stram, who won Super Bowl IV as head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs. Stram coached the Saints in 1976 and 1977. And, as astute readers have pointed out but I spaced out on: Mike Ditka, Who won Super Bowl XX coaching the Bears and later coached at New Orleans.