Throwback Game of the week - OAK @ PIT

Throwback Game of the week - OAK @ PIT

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Week 13 - Oakland at Pittsburgh

There may not have been a rivalry more heated in the 1970s than the one between the Oakland Raiders and Pittsburgh Steelers. The two clubs met in the playoffs five straight seasons from 1972 to 1976.

However, Sunday’s showdown at Heinz Field marks just the 18th regular season meeting. The Raiders hold a slim 9-8 series lead.

First Time:
Oct. 25, 1970 –Hall of Famer George Blanda, the NFL’s oldest player at age 43, came off the bench to replace an injured Daryle Lamonica and threw 3 touchdown passes to lead the Raiders to a 31-14 win in Oakland. Rookie tight end Raymond Chester had three TD catches, one from Lamonica and a pair from Blanda.

Last Time:
Oct. 29, 2006 – The Raiders scored two touchdowns on interception returns to counter a mere 98 yards of offense to beat the Steelers 20-13. Nnamdi Asomugha (24 yards) and Chris Carr (100 yards) had the pick sixes. Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger threw for 301 yards and a touchdown but was intercepted four times.

Hall of Fame Members
The Steelers are represented in Canton with 18 long-time members of the organization who’ve earned election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In addition, five other Hall of Famers spent a brief time with the club. The Raiders have 13 Hall of Fame members and also have six other enshrinees who played a small portion of their Hall of Fame careers with the team.

Enshrinees by team>>>

Records found in the NFL Record Book
The 1941 Steelers hold the mark for the fewest passing first downs in a season. Pittsburgh mustered just 18 passing first downs that year.

The Raiders in 1977 set the single-season record for most rushing attempts. Oakland ran the ball 681 times during the season.

Throwback Game
Sept. 17, 1972

Terry Bradshaw scrambled for two touchdowns and also had a TD pass in this season opening win.

The Raiders and Steelers entered this season-opener at Three Rivers Stadium with high hopes. Both teams were looking to improve on the second place finishes in their respective divisions the year before.

The Steelers took control early and by the fourth quarter had a comfortable 27-7 lead. However, Pittsburgh had to hold off a rally by the Raiders to come away with a 34-28 win.

Pittsburgh jumped out in front due much in part to quarterback Terry Bradshaw who scored a pair rushing touchdowns including a 20-yard TD run. He also later hooked up with wide receiver Ron Shanklin on a 57-yard TD pass play in the final quarter. The Steelers first-half domination was also helped by two interceptions by safety Chuck Beatty and when Henry Davis scored the game’s first touchdown on a blocked punt.

The Raiders attack was sparked by the insertion of quarterback Daryle Lamonica into the lineup. He was the third QB for Oakland that day as starter Ken Stabler and 45-year-old George Blanda weren’t able to move the offense. Lamonica completed 8 of his 10 passes for 172 yards and Mike Siani had 111 yards receiving on 4 catches. Two of those receptions were touchdowns (24 and 70 yards). But the Raiders offensive explosion came too late.

Little did either team know that they would face each other in the playoffs later that year in what turned out to be one of the most famous finishes in NFL history. The teams met in the AFC Divisional Playoff Game as the result of Pittsburgh winning the AFC Central Division with an 11-3-0 mark and the Raiders finishing atop the AFC West with a 10-3-1 record. That thrilling playoff game was decided by the famous “Immaculate Reception” play that won the game for the Steelers.

Oakland 0 7 0 21 - 28
Pittsburgh 14 3 10 7 - 34
A– 51,141
PIT – H. Davis 5 blocked punt (Gerela kick)
PIT – Bradshaw 20 run (Gerela kick)
PIT – FG Gerela 48
OAK – Chester 26 pass from Blanda (Blanda kick)
PIT – FG Gerela 8
PIT – Bradshaw 2 run (Gerela kick)
OAK – Siani 24 pass from Lamonica (Blanda kick)
PIT – Shanklin 57 pass from Bradshaw (Gerela kick)
OAK – Highsmith 1 run (Blanda kick)
OAK – Siani 70 pass from Lamonica (Blanda kick)

Game Program Cover | Official Gamebook (PDF)

More Raiders & Steelers on

Team histories
Oakland | Pittsburgh

Raiders Hall of Famers
Raiders RBs
Steelers Hall of Famers
“Immaculate Reception”

Elevator panel from Three Rivers has interesting story behind it
George Blanda jersey
“Immaculate Reception” turf
Three Raiders set marks in same game

Some other stories on Raiders & Steelers
Immaculate Reception
Raiders and Steelers battled in 1976 AFC Championship Game
The Holy Roller
Raiders and Oilers combine for 70 points in first half
Harris and Bleier rush for 1,000 yards in same season

2009 Throwback Game of the Week archive>>> Back to news