As New Orleans prepares to host its tenth Super Bowl, Jacob Mayer is taking a look back at the city's rich Super Bowl history. Stay tuned to Morning Edition and All Things Considered all this week for stories from the Big Game.
New Orleans’ second Super Bowl featured a true all-star lineup. Although the game featured legendary players like Mike Ditka, Roger Staubach, Larry Csonka and Bob Griese, the real stars were the coaches — the Dallas Cowboys’ Tom Landry and the Miami Dolphins’ Don Shula. Both coaches would end their careers with two Super Bowl championships apiece, but Super Bowl VI was Landry’s coming-out party.
The Cowboys and Dolphins met on January 16, 1972, in a windy and cold Tulane Stadium. The heavily-favored Cowboys were looking to bounce back from a disappointing loss to the Baltimore Colts the year before in Super Bowl V, while the Miami Dolphins were a young team looking to make a name for themselves in Shula’s second year as head coach.
Both teams started slowly on offense. The only score in the first quarter was a field goal by Dallas placekicker Mike Clark. The Cowboys’ offense broke through in the second quarter when Staubach connected with Lance Alworth for a touchdown pass.
Staubach was the NFL’s leading passer during the 1970 regular season, and his two touchdown passes earned him the game’s Most Valuable Player award.
The Dolphins managed a field goal early in the second quarter, but the Cowboys defense stifled the Miami offense the rest of the way. Griese, who led the AFC in passing during the regular season, had one of the worst games of his Hall of Fame career. Griese completed only 12 of his 23 passes with no touchdowns and one interception.
The Cowboys added two more touchdowns in the second half: a third-quarter run by Duane Thomas and a fourth-quarter pass from Staubach to Ditka on their way to a 24-3 victory, and their first of five Vince Lombardi Trophies.
This game was once again blacked out in the New Orleans area under the NFL’s archaic blackout rules. The rules changed the following season.
National Anthem: U.S. Air Force Academy Chorale
Halftime Show: "Salute to Louis Armstrong" with Ella Fitzgerald, Carol Channing, Al Hirt and the U.S. Marine Corps Drill Team
Ticket Cost: $15
Cost of 30-Second Commercial: $86,000