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Terry Bradshaw

Team Of Dynasty And Destiny

Bradshaw, benched for the first six games of the 1974 season, was finally put back into the starting quarterback slot by coach Chuck Noll. This gesture of confidence finally turned things around permanently. The Bradshaw that returned to the field was a professionally and spiritually renewed man and athlete. His level of play surpassed anything he had shown before, and culminated in the Steelers's 16-6 win over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IX. After this triumph, his teammates truly embraced him for the first time. "I was starting to fit in with the team. I've never been what you'd call a joiner, but the pieces started fitting together and the players started being more friendly with me and making me part of the locker-room jokes…. Through the confidence I was developingand a little taste of success, I started being myself and quit worrying so much."

The Steelers of the mid and late 1970s were perhaps football history's most dominating dynasty. As Gordon Forbes of USA Today commented on December 29, 1988, quarterback Bradshaw and running back Franco Harris provided one of the most explosive pass-rush combos ever, on par with Joe Theisman-John Riggins, Troy Aikman-Emmitt Smith, or John Elway-Terrell Davis. Balletic wide receiver Lynn Swann and speedster John Stall-worth represented two of the best deep pass reception threats. And when the Steeler offense wasn't running rampant, the defense consisting of defensive end Mean Joe Greene and bone-crushing linebacker Jack Lambert of The Steel Curtain shut their opponents down.

In 1975, Bradshaw and the Steelers repeated their triumph with another championship victory over the "America's Team" Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl X. Bradshaw took the Steelers to another Super Bowl win in 1978 against Dallas, beating the Cowboys 35-31. He was chosen Super Bowl MVP and NFL Player of the Year. He also set team and personal records for pass attempts (472), completions (259), and yards gained (3,724) during the season. Steve Cady, writing for the New York Times Magazine, said: "Going into his 11th season[1980], he will have passed almost 12 miles, and the Bayou Bumpkin label has been left in the dust of the most impressive quarterbacking record in football today."

But Bradshaw wasn't done. He had one more big year in him. In 1980, he led the Steelers to a fourth Super Bowl victory over the Los Angeles Rams.

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