On this date (November 16) in 1970, before a Cotton Bowl crowd of 69,323 and a nationwide audience watching Monday Night Football on ABC, the Cardinals beat the Dallas Cowboys, 38-0.
It was the third consecutive shutout for the Big Red—they had blanked the Houston Oilers, 44-0, and the Boston Patriots, 31-0, in their previous two games—who became the first NFL team to shut out three opponents in a row since the 1935 New York Giants. The victory improved their record to 7-2 and kept them in first place in the NFC East Division.
For the Cowboys, who fell to 5-4, it was the first time in their 11-year history (147 games) that they were whitewashed.
Running back Johnny Roland and cornerback Roger Wehrli, a pair of University of Missouri products, were the Cardinals’ linchpins that night.
Roland returned a first-quarter punt 74 yards for a touchdown and rushed for two more TDs (10 and 3 yards) in the fourth quarter.
Recalling his punt return, Roland, 79, said recently, “(Punter Ron Widby) kicked a low line drive and I was able to field the ball clean. I didn’t have Mel Gray-type speed, but for a big guy I was able to move pretty good.”
Wehrli, playing in only his second NFL season, intercepted two passes, broke up five others, and made three unassisted tackles. The A.P. selected him as the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Week.