Mention the Dallas Cowboys and jumbles of images present themselves. There’s the goofy everyman quarterback, Tony Romo, his ditsy blond girlfriend, Jessica Simpson, brash and mouthy wide out “TO” Owens, nipped and tucked owner Jerry Jones, bad boy club hopper Adam “Make it rain Pacman” Jones and the rest of the merry band of misfits, hoodlums and football players.
When one thinks of the Pittsburgh Steelers images of crushing blows, sturdy defense and a physical, grind-it-out style of football comes to mind. There’s a toll when playing the Steelers and, win or lose, opposing teams will pay it.
This weekend the Cowboys bring their entourage to the ‘Burgh to face the Steelers in the great outdoors of Heinz Field with sub-freezing weather, possibly in the snow and likely in the slop.
Both teams have ample motivation: the Cowboys compete for their very playoff lives while the Steelers seek to keep a one game divisional lead over rival Baltimore, whom they face the following week.
The game will likely garner Fox Sports #1 broadcast team featuring announcer Joe Buck and analyst Troy Aikman.
When these two teams last met the place was Texas Stadium and the time was Big Ben’s rookie season (Willie Parker’s, too). Vinnie Testaverde played quarterback for the Cowboys. Keyshaw Johnson had 6 catches and a touchdown while Eddie George had 10 carries for 28 yards. Big Tuna roamed the sideline. For the Steelers Deuce Staley had 93 yards on 18 carries and after a late fumble recovery, Jerome Bettis scored a 1 yard touchdown to grab a late 24-20 victory.
Many of the players and both head coaches have changed this time around but it’s still the Cowboys and the Steelers. The star heads versus the men of steel. The self-proclaimed America’s Team versus the real America’s Team (check the stands at any Steelers’ road game, you’ll see).
Tune in the festivities this Sunday afternoon. There may not be a big top but there will be a spectacle to behold.
Prediction: 23-20, Steelers.