The Good Ol Days of Landry, Staubach, Dorsett and the '77 Dallas Cowboys

Michael TagliapietraContributor IMay 29, 2009

1979:  Quarterback Roger Staubach #12 of the Dallas Cowboys rolls out of the pocket during a Cowboys game in the 1979 season.   Mandatory Credit: Allsport/ALLSPORT

Being from Wisconsin you would expect my favorite team to be one of the legendary Packer teams in history. I was born in 1967, so I remember nothing of the great Lombardi teams that won the first two Super bowl’s.  

After Coach Lombardi left the Packers they suffered through many years of ineptitude, and at the age of 10 I wasn't about to chose a loser for my favorite NFL team.  

So, the 1977 Cowboys were a logical choice to me, I mean why not chose a winner right?

After a disappointing loss the previous year to the Los Angeles Rams in the playoffs the Cowboys traded up with Seattle to get the second pick in the 1977 draft. I don't know if you've heard of this guy, but they selected Tony Dorsett out of Pittsburgh, not a bad pick.  

They also selected wide receiver Tony Hill to solidify the offense.  Led by Coach Tom Landry they were poised to make another run at the Super Bowl, and they didn't disappoint.  

On offense they had Roger Staubach, Tony Dorsett, Robert Newhouse, Preston Pearson, Drew Pearson, Tony Hill, Butch Johnson, and Billy Jo Dupree to name a few. Along with a dominating offensive line, this unit was nearly impossible to contain. Staubach was the consummate leader in every way, and with Captain Comeback at the helm few games were out of reach.

On defense (you may have heard of a few of these guys) there was Harvey Martin, Randy White, Ed Too Tall Jones, Jethro Pugh, DD Lewis, Thomas Hollywood Henderson, Bob Bruenig, Cliff Harris, and Charlie Waters.  

This unit rivaled the Steel Curtain as one of the greatest defensive units of all time, and could shut down opposing offenses at will.

After watching the game on Sunday we would always go outside and play our own version of football, re-enacting what happened in the real game, or at least trying to. I would be Dorsett, the neighbor kid would be Fran Tarkenton, my brother Mean Joe Green.  

What was it that captivated us as kids towards the players of the 70's? What was it that captivated me as a 10 year old about this team? The star on the helmet? The color of the jersey? Maybe.  

Or it could be as simple as they were winners, and as kids isn't that who we idolize and look up to most?

Although the Cowboys are no longer my favorite team, they're certainly not my least favorite (I reserve that for the Vikings). Now with gray hairs popping out and a spare tire around my waist line I think back on those days with fond memories.  

The 70's, what a great time to grow up as a kid!  I wouldn't trade it for anything, wait, let me get back in my time capsule, I want to go back just one time and take that handoff from Staubach.