PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers retired Corridor of Fame working again Franco Harris’ No. 32 throughout a bittersweet ceremony on Saturday night time at halftime of their sport towards the Las Vegas Raiders.
The long-planned honor got here three days after Harris died at age 72 and sooner or later after the fiftieth anniversary of “The Immaculate Reception” Harris pulled off in a playoff victory over the Raiders.
Harris’ widow, Dana Dokmanovich, and their son, Dok, joined Steelers president Artwork Rooney II on stage whereas lots of Harris’ former teammates, coaches and rivals-turned-friends stood close by.
“It wasn’t imagined to be like this,” Rooney stated. “The large man was imagined to be with us tonight. … Franco introduced us pleasure for 50 years. So in recognition of his many contributions each on and off the sector, it’s my honor to declare No. 32 is formally retired.”
The Steelers honored one of many cornerstones of their Seventies dynasty all through the night time. Many gamers wore a reproduction of Harris’ jersey into the stadium and through warmups, and their throwback uniforms featured a patch commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of what was voted in 2020 as essentially the most well-known play in NFL historical past.
Defensive co-captain Cam Heyward carried an enormous black flag with No. 32 on it throughout pregame introductions. The membership held a second of silence for Harris earlier than the opening kickoff.
Pittsburgh rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett — whose choice with the twentieth total choose in final spring’s draft was introduced by Harris — even barked out “Franco! Franco!” in his cadence earlier than sneaking for a primary down within the second quarter.
Harris is the third Steeler to have his quantity retired. The group retired Corridor of Fame lineman Ernie Stautner’s No. 70 in 1964 and the No. 75 of Corridor of Fame defensive lineman Joe Greene in 2014.
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