John Stallworth’s statistics look almost pedestrian compared to the numbers the receivers put up in the current NFL. But there might not have been a better, big-time receiver during his era.
Stallworth was blessed with great speed and great height, an advantage for him in an era when defensive players were allowed to play, well, defense against receivers. You simply couldn’t out-muscle him. Those receivers today who have come so adept at the “jump ball,” well, that was a move perfected by Stallworth.
Stallworth retired as the Steelers’ all-time leader in receptions, yards and touchdowns. The most indelible image of Stallworth was him as he hauled in a 73-yard touchdown reception as the Steelers rallied in the fourth quarter to defeat the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl XIV.
Stallworth always had a flair for making the biggest plays on the biggest stage. He still holds the Super Bowl records for career average per catch (24.4 yards) and single-game average (40.33 in Super Bowl XIV). He had 12 career playoff touchdown receptions and had a catch in 17 consecutive postseason games.