Oilers Blank Cowboys Before Record Crowd

MEXICO CITY -- The largest crowd in NFL history got a bad game. The Houston Oilers and Dallas Cowboys got a bad field.

So it went as the National Football League played an exhibition game in Mexico City on Monday night at Azteca Stadium with the Oilers winning 6-0.

Al Del Greco kicked field goals of 37 and 26 yards in the first half for the only scoring, but that did not seem to matter to the crowd of 112,376 fans.

Heavy rain before the game turned the stadium surface into a muddy mess.

"We should have been planting corn instead of playing football," Dallas coach Barry Switzer said. "It's really hard to give a solid evaluation on how we played, because it was a wet track."

But the constant blaring of loud mariachi and rock and roll music kept the fans entertained even when the action did not.

"When I hear NAFTA, I wish that it stood for 'North American Football Trade Agreement,'" Cowboys fan David Ibarra said. "We've been waiting years for this."

The Oilers extended their success against the Cowboys to 11 victories in their last 12 meetings, including a 2-0 record in the regular season.

Cody Carlson, who completed 11 of 16 passes for 120 yards, guided the Oilers to the Cowboy 20, highlighted by a 19-yard pass to Pat Coleman, prior to Del Greco's 37-yarder.

Oilers cornerback Darryl Lewis, recovering from knee surgery, stopped a Cowboys drive at the Oiler 17, setting in motion a drive to the Dallas 9 and Del Greco's second kick.

"The field was in pretty bad shape but both teams have to play on it," Oilers running back Gary Brown said. The attendance broke the NFL record set in 1947 when the NFL champion Chicago Bears played the College All-Stars in Chicago's Soldier's Field.

Carmen Calderon, 48, a Mexico City housewife, had another reason for wanting to see Mexican kids playing American football. "I'd like to see them grow up playing football and making $18 million dollars a year like Troy Aikman," she said.