CANTON, OHIO — The rivalry between the Cowboys and 49ers was the highlight of the NFL in the 1990s. But there was a respect there. You can feel it between the fans of the teams here in Canton, and it was addressed by Jerry Rice during his Hall of Fame speech.
“If not for you, Emmitt, and the Dallas Cowboys, there would be three more Super Bowl rings on my fingers,” Rice said to a great response to the partisan fans.
“Rivalries are great for the NFL, and it’s fitting that the 49ers and Cowboys are represented here today. We definitely made each other better.”
Not to spoil a great line, but it bears noting that the Packers knocked the 49ers out of the playoffs in 1995. But the Cowboys cost them at least two rings.
Of course, it will be interesting to see if Smith returns the volley by noting that the 49ers kept the Cowboys from winning four consecutive Super Bowls.
– Adam Rank