Category Archives: Abner Haynes

Dear Abner, The Ref Goofed!

Last month AFL author, Dave Steidel, sent me a couple of new stories that he had written for Tales.  Here is the first, a look back at Abner Haynes’s flub (or not flub?) in the 1962 AFL Championship Game. ~Todd Tobias

Dear Abner, The Ref Goofed! by Dave Steidel

Left or right, vanilla or chocolate, drive or walk, small or large?  Decisions, decisions, decisions!  Something that we are faced with on a daily basis.  But as we all know, they are not always black or white.  Instead of left or right, sometimes we can go straight.  Vanilla or chocolate?  Ever hear of a ‘black cow’?  Drive or walk, how about peddling!  Small or large?  What about medium?  Forced choices are part of narrow band of decisions that gives us only limited options and at times we have to bite the bullet, so to speak, and choose either one or the other base on the information we have available to us at the time.  And you will see in this article, in pro-football, at least in AFL in 1962, the choices when winning a coin toss ARE NOT simply to kick or receive!

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AFL PLAYERS CAN TEACH US A LESSON ON DEALING WITH RACISM

A couple of weeks back I posted an article that drew a connection between the recent Donald Stirling incident and the AFL All-Star boycott in 1965.  I still think that the comparison is a stretch, but anytime that the ’65 All-Stars can be recognized for their bravery is fine by me.

An article posted yesterday on The Mile High Report discusses current levels of perceived racism in professional sports, and talks a bit more about the New Orleans situation.  I used to be indifferent to the Redskins situation, and thought it was being blown out of proportion.  But then a friend’s simple question made me reverse my thinking.  “Would you walk up to a Native American and say, “Hi Redskin!”?”  Of course I would not.  Then why should the Washington football team continue to use the name?  History is a reason, I guess.  But just because we’ve done something one way forever doesn’t necessarily make it right.

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1965 Denver Broncos

After mostly finishing at the bottom of the western division in years past, optimism was a bit higher in the Denver Broncos camp heading into the 1965 season.  Denver had signed two of the league’s greatest running backs in Cookie Gilchrist and Abner Haynes, and with the receiving threat in Lionel Taylor, Bronco fans were hoping for great things to come from their offense.  Sports Illustrated acknowledged the improvements on the offensive side of the ball, but had little faith in the Denver defense, and still expected them to finish last in the division.

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Chris Burford and Abner Haynes

autographed 1964 topps chris burford

#094 – Chris Burford

American Football League history is rife with stories of racial conflict.  Such was the case not only in the AFL, but in the country during the turbulent 1960s.  Through it all, however, bonds often developed between teammates, black and white, that began to blur the lines of segregation, and in many cases, helped usher in changes in civil rights policy.

I found the following story about two Dallas Texans and Kansas City Chiefs teammates, Chris Burford and Abner Haynes.  It is a nice article, and wonderful to see that Burford and Haynes remain friends to this very day, more than 50 years after they first met.

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A Hall of Fame Comparison – Abner Haynes

There is a feeling among AFL fans that the American Football League players are consistently overlooked for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.  In truth there are many players, the bulk of whose careers were spent in the AFL, that deserve serious consideration, if not outright induction.  In an effort to spark some discussion regarding their hall of fame worthiness, I will occasionally compare AFL players to their NFL (and Hall of Fame) counterparts. The short biographies on the NFL players have been taken directly from the Pro Football Hall of Fame website.

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