January 7, 1963 - The Houston Oilers representatives to the 1963 AFL All-Star Game. Back Row - Rich Michael, Ed Husmann, Bob Talamini, Charlie Hennigan, Don Floyd, George Blanda. Front Row - Freddy Glick, Jim Norton, Tony Banfield, Bob Schmidt, Charlie Tolar, Al Jamison.

January 13, 1963 - Austin Gonsoulin of the Denver Broncos makes a leaping interception in front of the Houston Oilers Charlie Hennigan, in the second annual AFL All-Star Game.

November 11, 1962 - The San Diego Chargers Ernie Ladd prepares to tackle Cookie Gilchrist, the Buffalo Bills star running back and 1962 AFL Most Valuable Player.

November 15, 1964 - The Chargers defense swarms over Chiefs running back, Curtis McClinton.

November 6, 1964 - George Blanda drops back against the Patriots defense in Fenway Park.

November 23, 1967 - Daryle Lamonica and the Raiders facing the tough Chiefs defense in Kansas City Municipal Stadium.


Collecting, Tales and Failed Plans

sid gillman todd tobias

Sid Gillman and I during our first meeting and interview in 1998.

Our community newspaper, The La Mesa Courier, recently interviewed me for an article about the AFL and my collection.  You can find it HERE.


Oakland Raider Don Manoukian Passes

Don Manoukian, an original Oakland Raider, and later professional wrestler, died Tuesday at the age of 80.  A full obituary can be found HERE.

The AFL’s Recent Passings

My least favorite part of writing Tales from the AFL posts is when I pass along the information on a recently-deceased player.  Sadly, four former AFL’ers passed away during my Summer hiatus, and I would be negligent if I did not inform our readers about them.  Three were members of original AFL teams, while the fourth played in the era after an agreement had been made to merge the leagues.

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Hey Tales, Where Have You Been?

As many of you have noticed, it has been quite some time since I last posted a story to Tales from the American Football League.  Several readers emailed, asking if I was all right, and hoping that I would get back to writing about our favorite professional football league.  I am fine.  My health is great, as is everyone’s in my family.  There were some extenuating circumstances that kept me from writing.

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Boston Patriots’ Clive Rush

Clive Rush spent six seasons (1963-1968) as the New York Jets offensive coordinator, carefully constructing what would become the AFL’s first Super Bowl-winning offense.

After experiencing championship successes, Rush became a hot commodity as a potential head coach, which ultimately ended with Rush being named as head coach of the Boston Patriots for the 1969 season.  The Pats had finished with a 4-10 record in 1968, and looked to Rush to spark an offense that had finished eighth of the 10 AFL teams in scoring.

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