Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


How Roger Staubach’s Hail Mary pass defeated the Vikings

NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Roger Staubach talks about how he coined the term “Hail Mary pass” during a 1975 NFC playoff game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Minnesota Vikings at Metropolitan Stadium. A Hail Mary now refers to a very long forward pass with only a small chance of making it to the receiver. After the game someone asked Staubach what he was thinking and Staubach said, “I just closed my eyes and said a Hail Mary.” The Vikings lost that game because of Staubach’s game-winning Hall Mary touchdown pass.

You can also learn about all our free newsletter options.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Dennis Tester on 09/20/2010 - 02:33 pm.

    I was at that game, sitting in the end zone seats behind the Cowboys as they started that last drive.

    What most people seem to forget is the blatant holding on Bob Lurtsema as he rushed Staubach from his left defensive end position. Just as Benchwarmer Bob was about to sack Staubach, Dallas’s right guard lunged and tackled Lurtsema from behind, allowing Staubach time to make the throw. The famous push-off on Nate Wright was only the second uncalled penalty on that play.

Leave a Reply