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Cardinals Destroy Cowboys in Dallas, 34-7

Sept. 14, 1963 - The passing of Charley Johnson (pictured), Bill Triplett’s running, a 58-yard dash with an intercepted pass by Jimmy Hill, and Cowboy mistakes gave the St. Louis Cardinals a 34-7 victory tonight in Dallas in an NFL opening game. Jim Bakken also kicked field goals of 43 and 45 yards. The Cowboys, who never have beaten St. Louis, were favored by six points. The best opening crowd in Dallas’s 4 years in the NFL — 36,432 — turned out in the Cotton Bowl. The Cowboys scored first as Don Meredith found the passing range in the second period. He threw for 49 yards in a 69-yard march, with the payoff throw a 15-yarder to Pettis Norman. St. Louis then jammed 20 points into the second period, with Bakken’s 43-yard field goal coming after Johnson had moved the Cards 42 yards. As soon as St. Louis got the ball again, it went ahead with a 79-yard drive. A screen pass from Johnson to Triplett that covered 38 yards got the surge going. A 30-yard dash by Triplett put the ball on the Dallas 2, and Joe Childress ran it in for the touchdown. Prentice Gautt, the Cardinals’ fullback, was seriously injured in the first half. He was taken to a Dallas hospital, where it was reported he had a possible ruptured spleen. Although Gautt is lost indefinitely and halfback John Crow is out until at least October, the Cardinals may get by. Triplett, who plays halfback or fullback depending on whether he is paired with Childress or Bob Paremore, looks ready to be an important factor. The next test is against the Eagles at Philadelphia Sunday. “Childress is a real pro in all senses of the word,” said St. Louis head coach Wally Lemm. “He hadn’t practiced at fullback all week, but he took over today without a hitch. Paremore, with his speed, will be a good spot player, and Bill Thornton will help us too.” The coach smiled at the two pitch-out option plays that scored for the Cards today. “We copied that from Minnesota. I you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em,” Lemm said. Minnesota had given the Cardinals a 35-0 preseason beating the week before.

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