Sunday’s playoff-cleaning return certainly evoked memories of the 49ers’ cherished history.
His next opponent should definitely be there.
Today marks the 40th anniversary of the 49ers of “The Catch,” Dwight Clark’s iconic touchdown from a Montana throw that beat the Dallas Cowboys—this Sunday’s wild-card opponent.
Wanna live it again?
The team’s NFC Championship Game win of 1981, namely, Sunday’s 27-24 overtime win at the Los Angeles Rams, has all the respect.
“Joe Montana: Cool Under Pressure” documentary streaming on Peacock TV. Episode 2 offers up poignant anecdotes from not only Montana and Clark but an up-and-coming coach named Bill Walsh.
Not only does Walsh rehearse the game-winning call “sprint right option”, but the Cowboys’ trash talk is shown leading up to their playoff rematch.
“This goddamn Dallas team, they can’t keep their mouth shut, you know?” Walsh says in a grainy video in front of the whiteboard during a team meeting. “They always like to make press releases out of Dallas that they’re going to kick someone’s ass, and they are again.
“I’m sick of them. I hope you guys feel the same way I am.”
Montana certainly did, and he recalled during the documentary how, after mocking Ed “Too Tall” Jones and completing a midfield pass to Clark, Montana turned to Jones and said: “Its respect (disrespectful).”
Of course, Montana dropped Jones and two other Cowboys in the final minute to launch a third-down, 6-yard touchdown pass to Clarke, with 51 seconds left in their 28-27 win at Candlestick Park—a young man with his mother. In Upper Deck with Tom Brady.
“You guys earn it and deserve it, because you’re the best team in football,” owner Eddie DeBartolo said in Happiness’s locker room, according to the Montana documentary. “I’m proud of you. I don’t think there’s anything above that. Anything in my life. And I love you all, and I thank you.”
Added Walsh: “Looking back on it, it was Camelot. That was Camelot. It was the greatest experience for everyone involved that they’ve ever been through in their lives to go through a season like this. That turning point He was the origin of a dynasty.
Clark, via footage from the locker-room interview: “It was a play we worked on all year. It didn’t really work like today. I was the secondary receiver. Freddy (Solomon) had to get the ball. It became wide open. Joe did a great throw.”
The documentary then passes to Walsh in the meeting room, describing the players “sprint right option”, and Montana notes how he not only scored with the earlier game of that game against the Cowboys, but How Walsh made them run plays over and over again. Practice at camp.
Clark, before passing away in 2018, said of Montana’s throwback documentary: “My astonishment with Joe is always that, in the frickin’ situation that sends you to the Super Bowl, rolling right, Freddy slips and He covers up, there are three cowboys in front of him, so he can’t run, it’s calm to say, ‘I have to get these guys up in the air.’ Pumps them up, they jump, and he throws it right where it’s supposed to be. It was the perfect pass, a magical moment in Montana.”
Montana said: “There was a huge sigh of relief, because it was such an important game for us to get ahead of it. Because of the preparation that went into it, knowing what the outcome would be if we won, made it all the more special.
“It was great to beat the Cowboys but now we were going to the Super Bowl.”
They won the franchise’s first five Super Bowls, the fifth since the 1994 49ers when they defeated the Cowboys in their last playoff meeting until this Sunday.