January 17, 1971

The Dallas Cowboy’s also know as America ‘s Team first appeared in Super Bowl V Played in Miami on January 17, 1971.  Their opponents that day were a very determined Baltimore Colts team who were still feeling the effect of having lost Super Bowl III to the Underdog Joe Namath led New York Jets.. The Colts were one of the members of the NFL that switched to the American Football Conference (the other teams were the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cleveland Browns) as part of the NFL-AFL merger. The game between the champions of the AFC Colts and NFC Champions Dallas Cowboys was played on artificial turf for the first time.

Defence was the name of the game in Super Bowl V.  The game produced 10 turnovers which included 6 by the Baltimore Defence. The Cowboys got off to a quick start with a pair of field goals and they started the second quarter with a lead of 6-0. Then as true great players do Johnny Unitas changed the pace of the game by completing a pass that was very controversial.  This pass was for 75-yards and a touchdown to receiver John Mackey. The pass had been intended for Eddie Hinton and was defended near perfectly by the Cowboys’ Mel Renfro. Both players went up for the ball at the same time. The ball bounced off Hinton and then to Mackey who made the most of his fortunes by completing it for the touchdown.  Officials said the ball touched Renfro before Mackey caught it and thus was a legal play (NFL Rules at the time stated that a ball could not rebound from one teammate to another without a defending player touching it first). The play stood and the Cowboys were left miffed. The Colts failed to take the lead as the Cowboys blocked the extra point.   Before the half was done, Dallas Cowboy Duane Thomas scored a touchdown after Unitas fumbled. Dallas took a 13-6 half-time lead but more importantly had regained that all important edge in the confidence game…..

Things continued to go the Cowboys way in the second half when Baltimore fumbled on the opening kick-off giving the Dallas Cowboys a chance to really take over the game by opening a big lead. A very motivated Dallas Cowboys offence drove to the two-yard line where things came to a crash as a second controversial play went against Dallas . Duane Thomas fumbled and it appeared that centre Dave Manders recovered. However, officials did not see the recovery and awarded the ball to Baltimore . The score remained 13-6 and stayed that way into the fourth quarter. Unfortunately for the Boys, two late interceptions by Craig Morton lead to 10 Baltimore points, including the game-winning 32-yard field goal as the Cowboys painlessly watched time expired.

This was a devastating loss and bitter pill to swallow for Dallas considering they had the lead for so long and two controversial plays went against them thus handing Baltimore a the Super Bowl. On the bright side, Chuck Howley was voted the game’s Most Valuable Player. He was the first player to win the award on the losing team.

All and all a pretty good start for the Cowboys in their first Super Bowl appearance.  The question was at the time how long would The Dallas Cowboys have to wait to return.  Dallas cowboy’s fans were hoping that it wouldn’t be long.

Starting Lineups

Dallas Pos. Baltimore
Bob Hayes WR Hinton
Ralph Neely LT Vogel
John Niland LG Ressler
Dave Manders C Curry
Blaine Nye RG Williams
Rayfield Wright RT Sullivan
Pettis Norman TE Mackey
Reggie Rucker WR Jefferson
Craig Morton QB Unitas
Duane Thomas RB Bulaich
Walt Garrison RB Nowatzke
Dallas Pos. Baltimore
Larry Cole LE Bubba Smith
Jethro Pugh LT B.R. Smith
Bob Lilly RT Miller
George Andrie RE Hilton
Dave Edwards LLB May
Lee Roy Jordan MLB Curtis
Chuck Howley RLB Hendricks
Herb Adderley LCB Stukes
Mel Renfro RCB Duncan
Cornell Green LS Logan
Charlie Waters RS Volk
Dallas Pos. Baltimore
Ron Widby P Lee
Mike Clark K O’Brien
Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Baltimore 0 6 0 10 16
Dallas 3 10 0 0 13
First Quarter
Dal – FG, Mike Clark, 14 Yard
Second Quarter
Dal – FG, Mike Clark, 30 Yard
Bal – TD, John Mackey 75 Yard Pass from Johnny Unitas (Kick Blocked)
Dal – TD, Duane Thomas 7 Yard Pass from Craig Morton (Mike Clark Kick)
Fourth Quarter
Bal – TD, Tom Nowatzke 2 Yard Run(Jim O’Brien Kick)
Bal – FG, Jim O’Brien, 32 Yard
Baltimore Stats Dallas
14 1st Down – Total 10
4 1st Down – Rushing 4
6 1st Down – Passing 5
4 1st Down – Penalty 1
5 Fumbles – Number 1
3 Fumbles – Lost Ball 1
4 Penalties 10
31 Yards Penalized 133
1 Missed Field Goals 0
56 Offensive Plays 59
329 Net Yards 215
5.9 Average Gain 3.7

Individual Stats

Dallas Garrison 12-65, Thomas 18-35, Morton 1-2
Baltimore Nowatske 10-33, Bulaich 18-28, Unitas 1-4, Havrilak 1-3, Morrall 1-1
Dallas Morton 12-16-127-1-3
Baltimore Morall 7-15-147-0-1, Unitas 3-9-88-1-2
Dallas Reeves 5-46, Thomas 4-21, Garrison 2-19, Hayes 1-41
Baltimore Jefferson 3-52, Mackey 2-80, Hinton 2-51, Havrilak 2-27, Nowatzke 1-45, Bulaich 1-5

Attendance – 80,055 in Miami

MVP – LB Chuck Howley, Dallas Cowboys

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