50 years ago today, the Steelers had one of the best drafts ever

Yesterday, 49ers receiver Brandon Aiyuk made a catch that reminded those of us who saw it live of the one-of-a-kind reception made by Steelers receiver Lynn Swann in Super Bowl X.

As it turns out, Swann was drafted by the Steelers 50 years ago today.

Yes, the draft used to be held before Groundhog Day. For the Steelers, every year had been Groundhog Day, with the exception of the season of the Immaculate Reception. On January 29, 1974, it all changed in the form of one of the greatest drafts of all time.

Teresa Varley of takes a look back at the time the team drafted FOUR Hall of Famers: Swann (round one), linebacker Jack Lambert (round two), receiver John Stallworth (round four), and center Mike Webster (round five).

The Steelers added a fifth Hall of Famer that year, but not in the draft. Safety Donnie Shell, unselected in a seventeen-round process, signed with the Steelers as a free agent.

Making the haul of Hall of Famers even more amazing is that the Steelers found key players from USC, Kent State, Alabama A&M, Wisconsin, and South Carolina State without the benefit of a Scouting Combine or coast-to-coast Pro Day workouts.

It's arguably the best draft any team has ever had, and it helped create the foundation (along with quarterback Terry Bradshaw, defensive tackle Joe Greene, linebacker Jack Ham, running back Franco Harris, cornerback Mel Blount, and more) for a team that would win four Super Bowls between 1974 and 1979.