Only 3 players in the Dallas Cowboys history have worn number 88. Current wide receiver Dez Bryant (Who is in a salary dispute with the Cowboys) Michael Irvin and Drew Pearson. Today we will consider two …Michael Irvin and Drew Pearson. So let’s start with Drew Pearson…
In 1973, he was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Dallas Cowboys, where he rose to become one of the NFL’s greatest wide receivers, earning career records of 489 receptions and 7,822 receiving yards, along with 189 rushing yards, 155 yards returning kickoffs, and 50 touchdowns (48 receiving and two fumble recoveries). Pearson was named one of the Top 20 Pro Football All-Time wide receivers, he was also recognized for his achievements by being named to the NFL 1970s All-Decade Team.
Pearson was named All-Pro three times (1974, 1976–77) All-NFC in 1975 and second Team All-NFC in 1978. In addition, Pearson was a Pro Bowler in 1974, 1976 and 1977. Pearson led the National Football Conference (NFC) in pass receptions in 1976 with 58. He served as offensive captain for the Cowboys in 1977, 1978, 1982 and 1983.
In 1979, he and Tony Hill—along with Tony Dorsett—helped the Cowboys become the first team in NFL history to have two 1,000-yards wide receivers and a 1,000-yard running back, when he recorded 55 receptions, 1,026 yards and 8 touchdowns. Pearson and Hill also became the first wide receiver tandem in Cowboys history, to record 1,000-yard receiving seasons in the same year.
In 1980, the Cowboys selected Pearson as their nominee for NFL Man of the Year. Pearson is known as “Mr. Clutch” for his numerous clutch catches in game-winning situations, especially the “Hail Mary” reception from Roger Staubach that sealed the victory in a 1975 playoff game, one of the most famous plays in NFL history. He also caught the game-sealing touchdown in 1973 playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams and the game-winning touchdown pass from reserve quarterback Clint Longley in the 1974 Thanksgiving game against the Washington Redskins. All three of those plays were named among the Top 75 plays in NFL history by NFL Films in 1994. All were included on a video/DVD by that name. In addition in the 1980 playoff game at Atlanta, Pearson’s clutch receptions helped win that game in a comeback by the Cowboys. In the 1981 NFC Championship Game against the San Francisco 49ers, Pearson almost rendered “The Catch” irrelevant when, in the waning moments of the game, he caught a long pass from Danny White that would’ve gone for a touchdown and won the game for the Cowboys had 49ers cornerback Eric Wright not made a one-handed tackle, stopping him just outside field-goal range (White fumbled on the next play, thus preserving victory for the 49ers and putting them in Super Bowl XVI). In 2009, on the NFL Network show “NFL’s Top 10”, in the episode titled “Greatest Dallas Cowboys”, he is number 10 on the list.
His career accomplishments left such a mark with the Dallas Cowboys, that his number 88 jersey is reserved for the best talent at wide receiver. Hall of Famer Michael Irvin and Dez Bryant have worn it.
Smallthoughts: Old School Tuesday salutes …Drew Pearson
|Career highlights and awards|
Career NFL statistics