Monthly Archives: October 2012

1963 AFL Championship Game


For someone like myself, who has spent countless hours learning about the Chargers of the 1960s, the 1963 AFL championship game has taken on a somewhat mythical existence.  Although, I think that is also the case for Chargers fans fortunate enough to have lived through that great era.  The AFL was still a new commodity then – fresh and exciting.  The ’63 Chargers had it all.  Beautiful uniforms, a season that began with one of the most legendary of training camps at the Rough Acres Ranch, an offensive system that was second-to-none, and a squad dripping with talent.  The stars aligned for the 1963 Chargers.  They built an 11-3 record for the season, and literally destroyed the Boston Patriots in the championship game by the score of 51-10.  That was the Chargers first, and still only league championship.  This video celebrates that championship victory. read more

San Diego Chargers’ Bill Hudson

autographed 1962 fleer bill hudson

#95 – Bill Hudson

The early Chargers defensive line had two well-known players in Ernie Ladd and Earl Faison, and two men that were not as well-known in Bill Hudson and Ron Nery.  Hudson was an early defensive leader for the Chargers, having already spent time playing professionally in Canada.  When he came to San Diego in 1961, he combined to with Ladd, Faison and Nery to form the Charger “Fearsome Foursome,” several years before the Los Angeles Rams had any such group. read more

What Have You Done Now, Eugene? – A Book Review

gene mingoIn their recent stomping of the Oakland Raiders, Denver Broncos kicker, Matt Prater, made a rare and unsuccessful pass attempt on a botched fake field goal play.  Shortly after, Broncos PR Director, Jim Saccomano, tweeted that Prater’s pass attempt was not the first ever by a Broncos kicker.  Legendary Broncos kicker, Gene Mingo, holds that honor.  In fact, in one 1961 game, Mingo threw two passes from his kicking position, both of which went for touchdowns of 50-or-more yards. read more

Daryle “The Mad Bomber” Lamonica

Daryle Lamonica floundered in relative anonymity for four seasons on the Buffalo Bills bench, backing up the great Jack Kemp.  Once he arrived in Oakland, however, his cannon-like right arm melded with Al Davis’s penchant for the deep pass, and thus Lamonia earned his nickname, The Mad Bomber.  This video illustrates a few points very well:

  • Lamonica could throw a ball 50 yards with very little effort.
  • #81 Warren Wells had phenomenal breakaway speed.  He is practically uncovered in many of these clips.
  • Al Davis LOVED the deep pass.
  • read more

    Fan Interference! 1961 Patriots vs. Texans

    In what has become known as one of the most comical plays in AFL history, a fan snuck out of the crowd and batted down a potential game-winning pass in a 1961 game between the Boston Patriots and Dallas Texans.  Perhaps the greatest thing about this play was that it was captured perfectly on film, preserved for generations of football fans.  Chris Burford and Chuck Shonta, the receiver and defender in this play, are both subscribers to Tales from the American Football League.  Perhaps they will weigh in on this bit of AFL history… read more