Category Archives: Chuck Shonta

The Miracle of the Polo Grounds

Dave Steidel shares the Miracle of the Polo Grounds!

In only the second week of their first season  in 1960 American Football League fans were treated to the Miracle of the Polo Grounds, eighteen years before the Miracle of the Meadowlands.

It happened in the Polo Grounds on September 17, as the New York Titans hosted the Boston Patriots.  The Titans led 24-21 with 3 seconds left in the game and a fourth down on their own 46 yard line. 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

Email from the AFL – Chuck Shonta, Boston Patriots

Chuck Shonta tackles Bo Roberson

Chuck Shonta (34) tackles the running back, Bo Roberson, of the Chargers in a 1961 game at Balboa Stadium.

Defensive back, Chuck Shonta, came to the Boston Patriots from Eastern Michigan in the 1960 AFL Draft.  Shonta was one of the hundreds to participate in the first Patriots training camp, and earned a spot in the defensive backfield that he did not relinquish until his retirement after the 1967 season.  In 105 games, all with the Patriots, Shonta recorded 15 interceptions and one fumble recovery, which he returned for a touchdown.  He was a member of the AFL Eastern Division All-Star Team in 1966, and was named to the Patriots All-1960s team. read more