Cowboys 24 - Dolphins 3 http://www.dallascowboysfanclub.com/superbowl/sb6.htm Superbowl 6NEW ORLEANS - Free at last! The Dallas Cowboys, a team that for many epitomized the frustration that can be big time sport, finally ridded themselves of all stigmas and won the biggest game of all here Sunday on a chilled but sun-filled day in the Sugar Bowl. It took 12 years since the team's inception in 1960 for Dallas to turn the trick...narrow losses in championship games past with Green Bay and Baltimore. But this time Dallas turned the trick and won the Super Bowl, the NFL championship and all that is holy in professional football. The biggest victory, when it was finally accomplished, did not turn out as difficult as some former battles that the Cowboys have both won and lost. Dallas simply followed a plan of perfection and polished off the American Football Conference's champion Miami Dolphins, 24-3, as what seemed like a slightly partisan Dolphin crowd of 81,035 watched live and the rest of an interested nation viewed over television. SOMETIMES SIDELIGHTS sound a theme. In the nearby French Quarter the night before this game a Miami fan was seen to give a Dallas Cowboy fan the choke sign. The Cowboy fan stood up and clouted the guy. Tom Landry's Cowboys seemed a lot like that. The Cowboys have been accused of being an unemotional team after sound victories over Minnesota and San Francisco to get here. Emotions flowed this time, though perhaps the greatest picture of all was when all-pro Bob Lilly, who has lived and died many times through it all, lit up a victory cigar. Backslapping...frenzy...madness. But it was fine madness. Even Duane Thomas, who hasn't opened his mouth in friendship in four months was talking again. But the game...Maybe it was the Cowboy experience in such games that eventually paid off against a Dolphin team which reminded many of the young, exciting Cowboy team of not many years ago which played NFL title games with the Green Bay Packers. EXPERIENCE HELPED because it is something that is always there to relate back to. Still this was also without doubt the best of many fine teams the Cowboy organization has fielded. The reward was just. Weakside linebacker Chuck Howley, the man who always plays so well in championship games, believes this is the start of a belated dynasty, one that was predicted for Dallas as far back as 1967. Howley, finishing his 13th season as the oldest Cowboy, was asked if he was not going to retire. "Are you kidding? said Chuck. "I'm REALLY starting to enjoy myself now." Dallas won on the field because its offense controlled the ball, reeling off 69 plays to 44 for Miami, moved the ball on the ground for more yards than any team in the Super Bowl has ever done and continued an almost unbelievable string of fine defensive efforts. The Cowboy defense did not allow a touchdown in either the NFC title victory over San Francisco or this game. WITH DUANE Thomas seeming more enthusiastic than he has in months, running at his best and Walt Garrison his usual self the Cowboys running game netted an SB record of 252 yards and a tremendous 5.3 per attempt. There was excellent and the young Dolphin defense just didn't seem able to cope consistently with the Cowboy running backs cutting back to daylight behind the fine blocking. The big factors of the game were expected to be which team could run the best, thus opening up pass avenues, and the individual matchup pitted cornerback Mel Renfro against wide receiver Paul Warfield, who had delt Dallas misery for many years while he was with Cleveland. Renfro got it on early, slapping down a number of passes to Warfield, and quarterback Bob Griese finally moved things around and put Warfield against other Dallas secondary. Quarterback Roger Staubach started slowly, throwing high and becoming confused against the Miami zone defense. But, as is his custom, Staubach hung in there, didn't get discouraged and finished with a fine 12 of 19 completions for 119 yards and two touchdowns. He suffered no interceptions as he edged out Thomas for the game's MVP award. "THIS GAME was a tremendous team effort," said Staubach. "Our offense played better than it has in the two previous playoff games and our defense always plays well." Told that he had been named the MVP of the game Roger said, "Holy cow!" Miami had a chance until early in the second half and, perhaps, even until the fourth period opened. Dallas, leading 10-3, moved the second half kickoff back 71 yards in eight plays to take a two touchdown lead. Thomas was at his best dipping and darting 23 yards with a key gain, behind blocks by guard John Niland and Rayfield Wright, to the Miami 22. Bobby Hayes then came back against the flow on an end-around, picked up an excellent block by guard Blaine Nye and moved 17 yards to the Miami five. Two plays later, Staubach was supposed to roll out to the weak side from the three. "The Dolphins weren't in the defense we expected," said Roger, "so I audibled to a pitchout to Thomas to the strong side." Strong safety Dick Anderson read the play and came charging into the Cowboy backfield just after Thomas took the pitch. But Duane feinted, allowing Anderson to go past him, and scored standing up. THIS GAVE the Cowboys confidence they needed to go all the way and an interception by the incomparable Mr. Howley sealed the Dolphins doom. Miami faced third-and-4 at its own 49 just as the final period started. Griese attempted to hit running back Jim Kiick on the right sideline. "Both outside linebackers were in zone coverage on the play," said Howley. "I had been faking I was going to cut down (knock feet out from under) the wide receivers most of the afternoon. This time I cut down Howard Twilley. I guess Griese didn't see me but I jumped back up and ran toward the sideline where Kiick was." Chuck intercepted the ball, followed his blockers down the sidelines and would have gone all the way except he fell at the Miami 9-yard-line. "IMAGINE!" HE SAID. "Nobody touched me. I had blockers out in front of me and I fell!" Howley jumped up, slammed the ball down in disgust and was swept off the field by his teammates, who appreciated more of what had happened at the time than Chuck did. Three plays later, Staubach hit Mike Ditka with a 7-yard touchdown pass as the Cowboy tight end beat Anderson. The Dolphins blitzed on the play. "I was going to look the safety off toward Mike," said Roger, "and then come back to Hayes. But they were coming in, Mike had the saftey beat and I just threw him the ball." This gave Dallas a 24-3 lead with 11:42 to play. It completely tolled the bell for Miami, which just never got untracked. Dallas would have made it worse except Calvin Hill, who was used on spot duty and performed very well, fumbled as he dove for the goalline from the 1 after Dallas had driven 79 yards. IT COULD HAVE STARTED worse for Miami, too. Only the Dolphin' second possession of the game fullback Larry Csonka, who hadn't fumbled all year, fumbled and Howley recovered at the Dallas 48. The Cowboys moved to a third-and-2 at the Dolphin 2 and Landry, shuttling tight ends to call the plays for Staubach, dialed a reverse screen to Thomas, with Tackle Tony Lisco acting as convoy. Execution seemed perfect but Tony, who did a good job all afternoon, missed his block and Thomas shuffled around when he should have turned it on for the flag. Anderson stopped him for no gain on a fine secure tackle. Mike Clark then kicked a 9-yard field goal to salvage something. Staubach started clicking about midway of the second period, leading the Cowboys 76 yards on 11 plays and using up five minutes. The TD came 1:15 before the half as Staubach found Lance Alworth, curling just in front of cornerback Curtis Johnson just by the flag, for seven yards. "They seemed pretty loose on the play," said Staubach. "We'd seen that on film. He (Johnson) actually almost made a fine play and knocked down the ball." Miami, a team that just didn't fumble this season, lost two fumbles and suffered the interception. Griese did not have a good day, and the Cowboy secondary glued Warfield, except for a 23-yard reception just before the half that led to Garo Yepremian's 31-yard field goal. Griese finished with 12 of 23 completions for 134 yards but suffered the interception, pulled back too soon to fumble a snap from center and suffered a hideous 29-yard trap at the hands of Lilly when he kept retreating and retreating. THOMAS 18 CARRIES and 95 yards, and Garrison, 14 for 74, easeily took the luster off the more-hearalded tanden of Csonka and Kiick, who got a chance to carry the ball only 16 times between them for 80 yards. Nobody has dominated a Super Bowl game as Dallas did this one since the Packers in 1966 and 1967. But the Dolphinsof Don Shula, who captured the fancy of most of the fans here before the game, will live for another day. The Dallas Cowboys had just been living too long for this one to let it get away.