SI Vault
Ron Fimrite
January 12, 1981
Drew Pearson, the Dallas Cowboys' superlative wide receiver, swiftly ascertained that something was up—probably the football—when he glanced back from the goal line and saw that Quarterback Danny White's, right hand was empty. "The next thing I saw," Pearson recalled later, "was the ball." There was nothing to do but catch it, which Pearson did—for the winning touchdown in the Cowboys' remarkable 30-27 comeback win over the Atlanta Falcons Sunday. There were 42 seconds left on the clock, and it was second-and-10 on the Atlanta 23-yard line when White ordered up "16 Wing 8," which calls for Pearson to run a simple post pattern. But there was nothing simple about it, because the Falcons did the unexpected, sending outside linebackers Al Richardson and Joel Williams in on a blitz.
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January 12, 1981

On A Wing And A Prayer

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He was on this heart-stopping series, mixing screens with sideline patterns until he reached the Atlanta 23 as the crowd fell silent. Then that fateful blitz.

"I didn't expect anyone to catch that ball," said White. "It was the blitz that killed Atlanta."

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