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This Day in Bills History, Dec. 22: O.J.'s only postseason moment

Dec. 22, 1974 – O.J. Simpson wasn’t completely shut out of the playoffs during his fabulous NFL career. Still, his one game didn’t go particularly well.

The Bills reached the postseason in 1974 and had to go to Pittsburgh. The Steelers were in their “Steel Curtain” era; the Pro Football Hall of Fame is filled with players from that Pittsburgh team.

Buffalo led the game, 7-3, after a period, but the Steelers turned the game around in the second quarter. Pittsburgh had a 26-0 burst to go ahead, 29-7, at the half. Franco Harris scored three straight touchdowns in the second quarter.

The Bills couldn’t respond, and lost, 32-14.

Simpson ran for 49 yards on 15 carries. He added a touchdown – but not on the ground. One of the greatest runners in NFL history got his only playoff score on a 3-yard pass.

Buffalo couldn’t run the ball very often in the second half under the circumstances, so Simpson never had much of a chance for a big day. Joe Ferguson was 11 for 26 for 164 yards passing.

Budd Bailey is a retired sports reporter and editor at The Buffalo News. He is also the author of "Today in Buffalo Sports History." Learn more about the book here.

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