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1990 Steelers 35 vs Browns 0 

(plus Marino discussion later in thread)

I LOVE this one! The Browns suffer through a comedy of errors, fumbling the ball on the first snap of 3 consecutive drives and ultimately commiting an additional half dozen turnovers (9 total) before the afternoon is over. The shell-shocked Brownies never have a chance and the blank look of utter futility on coach Jim Shofner's hound dog face throughout the game is PRICELESS. Meanwhile, Bubby Brister throws 4 TDs and rookie Barry Foster has his very first 100 yard game.

Guest

Tim,

Thanks for sharing all of these wonderful memories of the best team ever! Your site is totally AWESOME!! I was wondering if you could please past the 1980 Steelers ve Chargers and 1981 Steelers vs Falcons games?

Thanks,

Paul

Guest

I got Louie Lipps autograph on a Terrible Towel
(05-16-2017, 03:14 AM)Guest Wrote: [ -> ]Tim,

Thanks for sharing all of these wonderful memories of the best team ever!  Your site is totally AWESOME!!  I was wondering if you could please past the 1980 Steelers ve Chargers and 1981 Steelers vs Falcons games?

Thanks,

Paul

Glad you're enjoying it, Paul.  Thumbsup

Both of the games you just mentioned will be going up this week. Neither is particularly good video quality, unfortunately. Trying to get an upgrade of the Atlanta game, because I know it's out there.

Guest

That was a crazy season. They destroyed the Browns then got destroyed by the Oilers to finish the season and not make the playoffs. Even though Noll was about done here, I thought he did a pretty good coaching job with the 89 and 90 teams. For those teams to finish 9-7 with the horrible offense they had was pretty amazing.
(05-16-2017, 03:50 PM)Guest Wrote: [ -> ]Even though Noll was about done here, I thought he did a pretty good coaching job with the 89 and 90 teams. For those teams to finish 9-7 with the horrible offense they had was pretty amazing.

Agreed. Noll got the absolute most out of what he had to work with in '89 and '90 and was beginning to assemble some pretty good parts for the future.

Guest

I might be in the minority here but I really liked Brister. He had a lot of heart. I believe if he had better receivers to play alongside Lipps he would of been more successful. Dwight "hands of Stone was never really that good to be a #2 or #3 imo.
Defensively they were starting to become great. Nickerson, Hinkle, Little, Woodson, Lake, Everett, DJ Johnson, Willis, Evans, Lloyd and Williams all were forming the foundation of Blitzburgh defense we enjoyed in that decade.
(05-20-2017, 01:09 AM)Guest Wrote: [ -> ]I might be in the minority here but I really liked Brister. He had a lot of heart. I believe if he had better receivers to play alongside Lipps he would of been more successful. Dwight "hands of Stone was never really that good to be a #2 or #3 imo.
Defensively they were starting to become great. Nickerson, Hinkle, Little, Woodson, Lake, Everett, DJ Johnson, Willis, Evans, Lloyd and Williams all were forming the foundation of Blitzburgh defense we enjoyed in that decade.


Bubby was 90% heart, 10% Cajun spice.  Rockon

I liked Bubby, too. Enjoyed his passion. Not the most cerebral QB, unfortunately Laugh but a football player and a guy who played with fire. I always enjoyed his personality; his on-the-field performance, not so much.

Guest

No NFL team in the 1990s gave up more points in a season than these 1990 Browns: 462!

And 35 of them came here, which was 13.2 percent of those points allowed!

Even the 1-15 and 2-14 teams of that decade and the expansion teams weren't THIS bad defensively.

Even the dreadful 1-15 Patriots of that 1990 season "only" lost 24-3 at Pittsburgh (Noll's 200th win)
I blame the Rooney's for the 1990 team missing the playoffs by a game. Eric Green was supposed to be the catalyst in that offense from day one, but the Rooney's fought for every nickel and dime they could in Green's contract demands, so he got there late and missed camp, only to sign the same contract he and his agent offered the Steelers two weeks after the draft anyway.

But before that, former All Pro tight end Mickey Shuler was available, and the Steelers didn't bite then either. Not for Shuler's production really but he could have been a great buffer for the offensive players to learn that system and lean on him when the players almost had a mutiny because of Joe Walton's playbook having almost a short paragraph long play in the playbook.

IMO this cost them the division. They had no business losing to the Browns, and IMO they would have beaten the Raiders too, the defense hung tough in LA but the offense wasn't good enough.

When Green was finally ready when they played the Chargers they finished on an 8-4 run in their last 12 games.

Guest

(05-20-2017, 01:09 AM)Guest Wrote: [ -> ]I might be in the minority here but I really liked Brister. He had a lot of heart. I believe if he had better receivers to play alongside Lipps he would of been more successful. Dwight "hands of Stone was never really that good to be a #2 or #3 imo.
Defensively they were starting to become great. Nickerson, Hinkle, Little, Woodson, Lake, Everett, DJ Johnson, Willis, Evans, Lloyd and Williams all were forming the foundation of Blitzburgh defense we enjoyed in that decade.

Hypothetical question:  If the Steelers went with Brister over O'Donnell in the early '90s, how do you think they do?  Playoffs?  Super Bowl appearances?
(06-25-2017, 12:32 AM)Guest Wrote: [ -> ]Hypothetical question:  If the Steelers went with Brister over O'Donnell in the early '90s, how do you think they do?  Playoffs?  Super Bowl appearances?

Great hypothetical.  Thumbsup

I'd definitely give O'Donnell the nod over Brister. I'd say O'Donnell was probably good for about one additional win per season over the Bubster. I think those early-to-mid 90's teams would've been fairly successful regardless of who was under center. Fantastic defense, great O-line, ball control. 1996 with Tomczak is probably equivalent to what we would've seen with Bubby... 10 regular season wins and maybe a post-season win.
All depends on what offense they used. Remember, Mike Shanahan was Cowher's first choice as OC when Cowher was hired, and was on his way to Pittsburgh to accept the job when the 49ers called.

Now, forward to 1998, and how Brister played for Shanahan when Elway was hurt. He was fantastic (He also played well for the Eagles). Would Shanahan have accepted our job from the start if he knew going in that Bubby was the guy and no open QB battle was going to take place as it did in 1992 camp? Shanahan always preferred QB's who could move. Bubby was much more mobile than O'Donnell was.

Makes one wonder, doesn't it?
Then again, these are hypotheticals.

Honestly in my hypothetical, the Steelers draft Dan Marino in the 1983 NFL Draft, and the Steelers go to the Super Bowl at least four, maybe five times between 1983 through 1999; but we'll never know.

I mean, tell me you wouldn't want to see Super Bowl XIX with the 15-1 49ers, and the only team that defeated them, the '84 Steelers with Marino under center. That would have been amazing.

Matthew Simon
IMO during Noll's career with a drafted Dan Marino they win the SB in 1984, and they make the playoffs in 1983 (The team was 9-2 after 11 games even though Stoudt sucked) 1984, 1987, 1989, 1990, and 1991 with him (Which also makes you wonder how long Noll would have kept coaching?).  Three of those final five years I listed they missed the playoffs by a game three times and made it in 1989 (Which if they beat Denver in the regular season with Marino the Steelers are the AFC number one seed at 10-6 and the Broncos HATED playing on Astroturf).  The 1988 team was ravaged with injuries on defense and Mike Merriweather's holdout, not sure Marino could have even prevented that.  Maybe 2-3 wins more (Which puts them at 8-8 max), not sure of a playoff spot.
(06-29-2017, 07:55 AM)Matthew Simon Wrote: [ -> ]Then again, these are hypotheticals.

Honestly in my hypothetical, the Steelers draft Dan Marino in the 1983 NFL Draft, and the Steelers go to the Super Bowl at least four, maybe five times between 1983 through 1999; but we'll never know.

I mean, tell me you wouldn't want to see Super Bowl XIX with the 15-1 49ers, and the only team that defeated them, the '84 Steelers with Marino under center. That would have been amazing.

Matthew Simon



Great minds think alike.  Pi_bigsmile  As I said over in the '85 Browns game thread when Bradshaw's health came up, "Never mind old man Bradshaw in '85... just think if we'd drafted Marino!!!  [Image: scared.gif] Marino to Stallworth and Lipps with Chuck Noll prowling the sidelines?"

Danny boy will always be the one that got away.  Pi_cry

That said, I don't think even Marino would've been good for more than 2 Super Bowl appearances, maybe 1 Lombardi. As great as he was, I think maybe -- MAYBE -- he lacked "something" in his makeup that multi-time champions have. He played for decent teams in Miami. They weren't terrible. Yet he couldn't get it done. Got close in '84... and then never even got back. 

Fouts syndrome? Same kind of deal. Something missing that cant entirely be blamed on the teams they played for. 

Maybe.  Nerd
(06-29-2017, 02:52 PM)Crash Wrote: [ -> ]IMO during Noll's career with a drafted Dan Marino they win the SB in 1984, and they make the playoffs in 1983 (The team was 9-2 after 11 games even though Stoudt sucked) 1984, 1987, 1989, 1990, and 1991 with him (Which also makes you wonder how long Noll would have kept coaching?).  Three of those final five years I listed they missed the playoffs by a game three times and made it in 1989 (Which if they beat Denver in the regular season with Marino the Steelers are the AFC number one seed at 10-6 and the Broncos HATED playing on Astroturf).  The 1988 team was ravaged with injuries on defense and Mike Merriweather's holdout, not sure Marino could have even prevented that.  Maybe 2-3 wins more (Which puts them at 8-8 max), not sure of a playoff spot.

There's a lot to talk about, so I'll go point by point.

I wasn't just referring to the Noll Years, I had mentioned 1983-99, Marino's whole career, that the Steelers would have gone to four or five in my hypothetical; 1984, 1994, 1995, 1997, and maybe 1989. Since this is the Noll Years, I'll continue the discussion on 1992-99, in the discussion of the 94 Dolphins/Steelers game.

In regards to 1984, I wouldn't be so sure, it would be a push. Yet, if I had to give a prediction of this hypothetical, I would have given the 49ers the victory, on a last minute Joe Montana comeback. (Full Disclosure: in addition to being a big Steelers fan, I'm also a big fan of the 49ers from 1981-98; so this was tough to try to be neutral on.)

1985: You didn't mention this, but I want to bring this up, if Marino was there, they wouldn't have gone from 6-5 to 7-9. They probably would have gone 9-7, or 10-6.

1987: I'm not exactly sure how the Steelers would have made the playoffs, maybe if the O-Line cleared a better path for Pollard in the Saints game, they vie for a wild card, maybe.

1989: The Steelers go the AFC Championship, they're not in a situation, where they have to comeback from an Elway drive.
 
1990: Well, if they had Marino, they probably wouldn't have started off 1-3.

A couple questions:

Question 1: How do you know that the Broncos hated playing on Astroturf? I checked the win-loss record of the 89 Broncos on Astroturf: 3-1 (the one loss was SB XXIV). It didn't seem like a problem to them. So where are you getting you're information on that? Sorry if it seems like I'm questioning your knowledge, I'd just like to know.

Question 2: Which game could the Steelers have won to go 10-6? The Only one that seemed within reach, was the week 13 game against the Oilers, and the margin of that loss was 7 points, the lowest margin in the regular season.

Thank you for responding, I always like hearing from fellow football aficionados.

Matthew Simon

P.S. For that 1988 hypothetical, going 8-8, would not have got them in the playoffs; however it would have been the perfect prelude for the horse-race that was the AFC Central in 1989.
Quote:How do you know that the Broncos hated playing on Astroturf?

I live in Denver. They despised Astroturf in the Elway/Reeves years. That organization would get in full panic mode the Monday after a game before the next game if it was on turf.
(06-30-2017, 10:45 AM)Crash Wrote: [ -> ]
Quote:How do you know that the Broncos hated playing on Astroturf?

I live in Denver. They despised Astroturf in the Elway/Reeves years.  That organization would get in full panic mode the Monday after a game before the next game if it was on turf.

Great to know; that's the kind of inside information they don't tell you about on the pregame show. Again, I'm sorry to have questioned you on that.

Matthew Simon
(06-29-2017, 08:35 PM)mcmillenandwife Wrote: [ -> ]
(06-29-2017, 07:55 AM)Matthew Simon Wrote: [ -> ]Then again, these are hypotheticals.

Honestly in my hypothetical, the Steelers draft Dan Marino in the 1983 NFL Draft, and the Steelers go to the Super Bowl at least four, maybe five times between 1983 through 1999; but we'll never know.

I mean, tell me you wouldn't want to see Super Bowl XIX with the 15-1 49ers, and the only team that defeated them, the '84 Steelers with Marino under center. That would have been amazing.

Matthew Simon



Great minds think alike.  Pi_bigsmile  As I said over in the '85 Browns game thread when Bradshaw's health came up, "Never mind old man Bradshaw in '85... just think if we'd drafted Marino!!!  [Image: scared.gif] Marino to Stallworth and Lipps with Chuck Noll prowling the sidelines?"

Danny boy will always be the one that got away.  Pi_cry

That said, I don't think even Marino would've been good for more than 2 Super Bowl appearances, maybe 1 Lombardi. As great as he was, I think maybe -- MAYBE -- he lacked "something" in his makeup that multi-time champions have. He played for decent teams in Miami. They weren't terrible. Yet he couldn't get it done. Got close in '84... and then never even got back. 

Fouts syndrome? Same kind of deal. Something missing that cant entirely be blamed on the teams they played for. 

Maybe.  Nerd

I'm not sure if you know this (you probably do, but not everyone who reads the comments does, and if they do know, then I'm repeating old information), but "The Chief" was enamored with Marino, just like he was fond of Bradshaw. However, Art Rooney Jr. wasn't passionate about him, and apparently neither was Chuck Noll. Noll wanted to rebuild the D-Line, and prevalent rumors about Marino and drug use, (that eventually turned out to be unfounded, one year after the 83 Draft, it was revealed a drug test Marino had to take at Pitt, revealed he was clean) proved to be the difference maker in the reason to not draft him. Art Rooney Jr. later said that "The Chief" was upset at/with him for not taking Marino. Even before "The Chief" passed away in 1988, "The Chief" still told him that they should have taken him.

Which two seasons are you thinking of in this hypothetical, in which the Steelers go to the Super Bowl, and which season do you think they win it all? I'm just kind of curious, that's all.

I always thought that with Marino, the Steelers go to 3 super bowls in 4 years in the mid-late 90s. A great quarterback, with a defense that could definitively stop anyone (a problem for all the Dolphins teams Marino played on), and a solid running core, that pretty much checks off most of the complaints about him. You imagined the connection of Marino to Lipps and Stallworth, I imagine the connection of Marino to Thigpen and Stewart. That's just me, yet the first combination would have been amazing as well.

As for something "missing" in his quarterback makeup, that one stumps me too. Yet, there is a theory that make some sense. It should be of note, that that comment was fortuitous, because I was watching a "Top 5 Reasons You Can't Blame" episode about Marino, and Bill Simmons, said this:

"You look at somebody, like Brady [Poster's note: Simmons comes from Boston] or Elway, these guys had ways of inspiring their teammates to go beyond what they were, I don't think that Marino had that capability."

Now regardless of what you think of Simmons, he does make a salient point, just explained horribly, and in the glibbest way possible.

Let me rephrase this: I like to go back to Joe Montana, during his time with the Chiefs. He had J.J. Birden, Willie Davis, Keith Cash, and Kimble Anders, none of those guys are Hall-of-Famers, however in 1993 & 94; he made those four guys look like first ballot hall-of-famers. Montana instantly improved his team just by showing up. I'm still not exactly convinced that Marino had that, especially throughout his entire career: during his college years and from 1983-85: I would say yes, but for the rest of his career, I would have to say no.

As for "Fouts Syndrome", my thoughts on that are simple, Fouts' Chargers never had a competent defense, to go with their high octane offense. In the two years the Chargers got to the AFC Championship under Don Coryell and Fouts, their defenses were ranked 18th (1980) and 26th (1981). By contrast, the Steelers of the '70s defenses ranked (in regards to the years they appeared in the AFC Championship): 2nd (1972, 1974, 1975), 1st (1976 & 1978) and 5th (1979). That's a colossal difference.

Sorry this has been long, I just like to show my work, that's all.

Thanks for responding.

Matthew Simon
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