ST. LOUIS Smacking lips with your sister can sting for a few moments. Meanwhile, tying in the NFL can leave a foul taste for 38 years.
Meet Otis Armstrong. He was a Denver Broncos running back from 1973 to 80. On Sept. 22, 1974, he was part of the NFLs first regular-season overtime tie when Denver and the Pittsburgh Steelers slugged each other before leaving Mile High Stadium even at 35.
Ah, timeless melodrama. Sunday, the St. Louis Rams and San Francisco 49ers finished gridlocked at 24. The tie, the NFLs 18th since overtime was introduced for all regular-season games in the '74 campaign, was an enigma wrapped around a paradox: It felt worse than losing but better than suffering defeat.
You expend a lot of energy, said Armstrong, who caught a 23-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Steve Ramsey in the fourth quarter to tie the score in 74. We went into overtime and still couldnt get it done. If you ever notice most of the faces of guys, theres no exhilaration at all. It almost...