At the start of the 1976 season, four losses in their first five games left the Steelers almost lifeless. When rookie QB Mike Kruczek took over for an injured Terry Bradshaw against he division-leading Cincinnati Bengals, the turning point was at hand.
Defensive Player of the Year Jack Lambert and the Steel Curtain answered the call. What followed was the most amazing defensive streak in modern history, the dimensions of which offer statistical delights to even the most casual football historians.
After their 1-4 start, the Steelers win 10 straight games. The defense does not allow a touchdown in 22 consecutive quarters nor in 8 of the last 9 regular season games and totally blanks 5 of its last 8 opponents, allowing only 28 points allowed over 9 games! There has never been anything like it in NFL history. Without question, the 1976 Pittsburgh Steeler defense was the greatest of all time.
"Lambert didn't see me coming until the last instant. He tried to square up but couldn't, and I drilled him -- just floored him. The play went for a score, and he got up cussing and yelling with the wildest eyes I've ever seen!" More...
Full Name: John Harold Lambert
Birthdate: July 8, 1952
Birthplace: Mantua, Ohio
High School: Crestwood High
Drafted: 1974, 2nd round, 1974
College: Kent State
Weight: 220 lbs.
NFL Experience: 11 years
Retired: 1984 (Pittsburgh Steelers)
Hall of Fame Induction: 1990
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Dear Steeler Fans: Jack Lambert-Tough As Steel (isbn 0-936369-54-X) is still available from Reniassance New, 165 Curry Hollow Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236 (1-800-292-0669) Last printing was in 2002. Retail price: $9.95. Please notify all Steeler fans. Thank you!
Ron "Tank" Rotunno
The Greatest Lambert Article Ever
A Must-Read! The image of Lambert was that of a toothless monster ravaging the NFL. But in reality, he was a quiet, extremely private man... a bird watcher and avid fisherman. Click here for the complete transcript of this classic, insightful '84 Sports Illustrated article by Paul Zimmerman, including a slew of great photos.
Lambert's Hall of Fame Induction Speech
"If I could start my life all over again, I would be a professional football player, and you damn well better believe I would be a Pittsburgh Steeler."
-- Jack Lambert --
Click here for complete audio and a complete transcript of Lambert's Hall of Fame acceptance speech (including his introduction by Dennis Fitzgerald), a Must Read for any self-respecting Steelers fan.
The 30 Greatest Steelers of All Time
Click here to find out where Jack ranks on this list, as well as the answers to burning questions such as: Who was better... Swann or Stallworth? Who has been the greatest player during the '90s? Who was the most important player on Steel Curtain defense of the '70s?
Steelers Yearbook Profiles
These info-packed excerpts from the official Steelers Media Guides from the following years are filled with info:
Lambert definitely won his fair share of awards! Click here for a listing of Lambert's MVP & Player of the Year Awards, All-Pro & All-Conference Honors, and other honorable-type stuff.
Fan Memoirs: Send Us YOUR Tribute to Lambert
Respect. He's earned it. He deserves it. And Lambert fans from all over are showing it by posting their memoirs & personal tributes to the greatest middle linebacker of all time. CLICK HERE to view an archive of fan comments we've received about Mr. Lambert, then send us your thoughts & memories.
Ah, Yes... the Super Bowls
Extensive commentary, stats, analysis, and facts about Lambert & Co.'s exploits in "the Big One"!