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NFL's 'The Catch'

While some games left me high on life, others became football nightmares. One such horror occurred when I was forty seconds away from the Super Bowl. We were in the lead the entire game with my fellow rookie, Everson Walls, picking off two of Joe Montana’s passes. Meanwhile, Ronnie Lott was flagged twice for rough play. San Francisco was practically giving us the game.

Danny Spradlin and I were already celebrating in anticipation of our trip to the Super Bowl. The closing minutes were bringing out acts of desperation as Joe Montana slung a hope and prayer to Dwight Clark. Everything entered slow motion as Clark sprung for an amazing touchdown forever labeled “The Catch.” It was a collective slap to our faces as their prayers were answered. Candlestick Park exploded with elation as fans poured onto the turf.

We were told to bolt for the locker room door as fast as possible, but it was an obstacle course of humanity. The safety hatch seemed miles away. I started to freak out as I was grabbed from all sides. Then my survival instincts kicked in like never before. Anyone between me and the locker room door was roadkill. I was agnostic to age, gender, friend, or foe as I ran over everything in my path like my life depended on it. Other players flooded into the locker room in shock, minus a helmet, jersey, or shoe, but we all made it to tell the tale of the almost Super Bowl of 1982.

More on this story and others in my memoir, Aggressively Human, available for pre-order on Amazon. The Audible version and ebook will also be available soon.


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