John Stallworth Pittsburgh Steelers

"I know I’m the primary receiver on ever route. Even if the quarterback looks elsewhere first, I know I’ll be open and he’ll come back to me.”

John Stallworth played for the Pittsburgh Steelers for 14 seasons from 1974 through 1987. The 6-2, 191-pound speedster teamed first with Lynn Swann and later with Louis Lipps to give the Steelers an unusually potent pass-receiving tandems.

Stallworth caught 537 passes for 8,723 yards and 63 touchdowns, all Steelers team records at the time of his retirement. A veteran of six AFC championship games and four Steelers Super Bowl triumphs (IX, X, XIII, XIV), Stallworth was named All-Pro in 1979 and All-AFC in 1979 and 1984. He also played in four Pro Bowls following the 1979, 1982, 1983 and 1984 seasons.

A native of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, where he was born on July 15, 1952, Stallworth was an All-Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference receiver for Alabama A&M in 1972 and 1973. He was selected by the Steelers in the fourth round of the 1974 NFL Draft.

Stallworth, blessed with great leaping ability and excellent speed, was the 82nd player taken that year. After a rookie year as an understudy, he became a starter in his second season and held that job for the rest of his 165-game career. Stallworth did battle a series of fibula, foot, ankle, knee and hamstring injuries that forced him to miss 44 regular-season games.

Stallworth, who scored the winning touchdown on a 73-yard reception in Super Bowl XIV against the Los Angeles Rams, holds the Super Bowl records for career average per catch (24.4 yards) and single-game average, 40.33 yards in Super Bowl XIV. He had 12 touchdown receptions and a string of 17 straight games with a reception in postseason play. 

He also held Steelers team records for career and single-season receptions, career reception yardage and his 64 touchdowns scored ranks second behind Franco Harris following his retirement in 1987. Stallworth led the AFC with a career-high 1,395 yards gained on 80 receptions in 1984, when he was named the NFL Comeback Player of the Year.