1979 Steelers 51 at Browns 35
October 7, 1979
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1979 Steelers 51 at Browns 35

In a battle for first place in the division, the 4-1 Steelers go into Cleveland Municiple Stadium and are all over 4-1 Browns early on, jumping out to 27-0 lead with Bradshaw throwing 3 TD's in the first 16 minutes of the game.

With Pittsburgh's O-line (Jon Kolb, Sam Davis, Mike Webster, Gerry Mullins and Larry Brown) finally intact and healthy for the first time all year, the Steelers amass an unheard-of 361 yards rushing (that's correct, 361 yards!) behind the relentless onslaught of Franco (153 yds), Rocky (81 yds) and Thornton (98 yds).

The first quarter goes something like this: Cleveland fumbles on their opening possession and Bradshaw immediately hits Cunningham for a 7-yard TD (set up by a 25-yard Thornton blast). The Browns punt and Bradshaw promptly hits Stallworth for 36, then goes to Thornton for a 10-yard TD strike. Cleveland drives to Steeler 6, but Cockroft misses the chipshot FG and Franco immediately bursts 71 yards off right tackle for another TD. Cleveland fumbles the ensuing kickoff and Bradshaw promptly lofts a 14-yard TD to a diving Jim Smith in the end zone (PAT failed) for a 27-0 Steelers advantage just one minute into the 2nd quarter. Cleveland then drives to Steeler 1-yard line, but Donnie Shell picks off Sipe in the end zone.

Game over, right? Wrong.

Cleveland fights back gallantly on the arm of Brian Sipe (351 yds, 5 TD) and actually makes it a game late, getting as close as 44-35 with 9 long minutes left. But the Steelers -- aided by a 71-yard TD run by Rocky Bleier, 2 Wagner INTs and a late marathon 15-play, 8-minute 94-yard TD drive -- hang on to win.

Among my all-time favorite games. This game video created from splicing two versions. The first 1-hour-and-58 minutes is very clean video quality, then the footage spliced with slightly less quality video to complete the game. Also includes some glorious (and hilarious) postgame footage from a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders special.


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