A video tribute for Franco Harris, the late Pittsburgh Steelers legend whose “Immaculate Reception” grab ― and eventual touchdown ― led to the team’s victory over the Oakland Raiders in 1972, reportedly didn’t catch the eyes of NFL Network viewers during a jersey retirement ceremony on Saturday.
The broadcast flub occurred after the Steelers’ public address announcer told fans to “turn their attention” to the Acrisure Stadium’s video board to catch a tribute to Harris, according to Deadline.
But the celebration for football fans in Pittsburgh appeared to not make its way to viewers at home watching the NFL Network as fans were instead subjected to an awkwardly-timed commercial break.
After the commercial break, the network ran through highlights from other games.
You can watch the moment below:
The unexpected broadcast moment took place as Harris’ widow Dana and his son Dok joined Steelers owner Art Rooney II on the field.
Harris ― a Pro Football Hall of Famer and four-time Super Bowl champion ― died in his sleep Tuesday at the age of 72, just three days prior to the 50th anniversary of the “Immaculate Reception.” No cause of death was given, the Associated Press reported.
Hours prior to his death, Harris revealed to Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo that he can’t remember anything of the play ― which is considered the greatest play in NFL history ― “past leaving the backfield” and had no clue how he “reacted so quickly.”
“When I see the film, and I see it in real time, it just blows my mind how quick that is... And I have no idea how I reacted so quickly, and got it and kept in stride. And even looked up a little bit to try and get the lay of the land...” Harris said.
“I’m saying, ‘How did all that happen in just those few seconds?’ It didn’t make any sense. Like, I just don’t understand it,” he continued. “I’ve always had great reflexes, but you don’t practice stuff like this. I’m just trying to see how quick it was. And how quick you have to react with something that’s never happened before. It just kind of blows my mind.”