(Photo by Harry Cabluck/Associated Press)
Quarterback Derek Carr spoke with the Las Vegas media yesterday, and with the Raiders playing in Pittsburgh on Sunday, it was only fitting that he was asked about the "Immaculate Reception" that occurred nearly 50 years ago.
And Carr, who likes to have fun with the media, said "the ball touched the ground" on the famous Immaculate Reception by Franco Harris that defeated the Raiders in the 1972 Divisional Round game.
As expected, the response by Carr that was tweeted out by Vic Tafur, who covers the Raiders for The Athletic, got a lot of flak from Steelers fans.
The catch by Harris that led to a touchdown was disputed for years by head coach John Madden and owner Al Davis. The Raiders back then always claimed that the league had a vendetta against them and they got screwed over in Pittsburgh with the Immaculate Reception.
Madden, Davis and Raiders players said Frenchy Fuqua touched the ball first, which back then would have resulted in an illegal play, but it's clear that Raiders' safety Jack Tatum deflected the ball as the ball flew back seven yards. And of course, the Raiders felt that Harris trapped the ball on the ground when he made the reception, as well, which isn't supported by video evidence.
The play is still talked about frequently to this day, nearly 50 years later. In 2019, the Immaculate Reception was voted as the greatest moment in NFL history by the NFL Network in celebration of the league's 100th anniversary.
In 2019, Peyton Manning also did a segment on ESPN with Terry Bradshaw, Harris, Fuqua and former Raiders' linebacker Philip Villapiano about the play.
Harris will even host Villapiano for Sunday's game between the Steelers-Raiders, and I'm sure like Carr, Villapiano will tell Harris that "the ball touched the ground."