Order the new book, The United States Football League, 1982–1986.
San Antonio 26 at Houston 291984 Week 17 - Monday, June 18, 1984
Attendance: 30,184, TV: ESPN
Highlights of the Gamblers victory.
HOUSTON (AP) - Former world heavyweight champion George Foreman, now a minister prayed before the game and Houston Gamblers quarterback Jim Kelly prayed in the fourth quarter in the Astrodome Monday.
Foreman, a former fighter turned minister, performed a wedding at halftime on the 50-yard line, and Kelly rallied the Gamblers with a pair of spectacular second-half comebacks for a 29-26 United States Football victory over the San Antonio Gunslingers.
"I was just praying our defense would give me a chance (to help Gamblers win)," said Kelly, who threw four interceptions and was sacked three times. "I guess this will give us a little more confidence going into the playoffs."
The Gamblers, already assured of a playoff berth as the Central Division champions, nonetheless had to rally twice in the fourth quarter to defeat their intrastate rival.
San Antonio quarterback Rick Neuheisel paced the Gunslingers to a 20-7 halftime lead with a 17-point first quarter that included a 15-yard pass to Don Roberts, Mike Hagen's two-yard run and the first of four field goals by Nick Mike-Mayer.
Houston's only first-half scoring came on Kellyls 44-yard touchdown pass to Richard Johnson, who set a USFL season receiving total of 1,322 yards.
Houston took a 21-20 third quarter lead on Kelly's 26-yard touchdown pass to Scott McGhee and Todd Fowler's one-yard dive.
But Mike-Mayer's 40 and 49 yard field goals gave San Antonio the lead until Kelly took the Gamblers 79-yards in two plays, capped by Ricky Sanders' 30-yard touchdown catch with 1:15 left in the game for the win.
"I don't think people were concentrating as much as they should have been," Kelly said of Houston's late victory. "We knew we could come back. It was just a matter of time."
Houston Coach Jack Pardee was pleased with his team's resiliancy. "We showed we can come from behind late in the game. We had been getting ahead early in most of our other games. This certainly wasn't one of our better games.We had enough mistakes to last a season."