Here is a fun one… Billy Joe – 1963 AFL Rookie of the Year

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autographed 1964 topps billy joe

Todd Tobias (790 Posts)

Todd Tobias's interest in the American Football League began in 1998, when he wrote my master's thesis about Sid Gillman. He created this site to educate and entertain football fans with the stories of the American Football League, 1960-1969. You can follow Todd and get more AFL history on Twitter @TalesfromtheAFL.

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6 Responses to Here is a fun one… Billy Joe – 1963 AFL Rookie of the Year

  1. Cool picture ! !

    I’ve always known Billy Joe as the man who replaced Cookie Gilchrist in the Buffalo Bills’ backfield. It’s actually more accurate to say he was part of a committee of runners that replaced Gilchrist. That’s a testament to what a good team the Bills were–after winning the 1964 championship with Gilchrist, they won the ’65 championship without him.

    What I didn’t know was that Joe played for the ’68 Jets team that beat the Colts in Super Bowl III. He ran for 186 yards and 3 touchdowns as a backup Emerson Boozer and Matt Snell.

    • Erik says:

      If I am not mistaken when Gilchrist went to Denver in the trade for Billy Joe he took the number 2 on his jersey, one better than Joe’s 3, to signify he was better.

      In return, Billy Joe took the number 33(I think it was 33), one better than Cookie’s 34(if that is the number Cookie had with the Bills) to show he was one better.

  2. Erik is right. That’s what went down!

    Joe’s rookie year of course was his best year. And I think we all know about Cookie’s situation with Buffalo. After the tale of him getting into an argument with Jack Kemp in the huddle in the Bill’s week 11 game in that ’64 season, most people knew that at some point in the off season Gilchrist would be gone from the Bills squad.

    It shouldn’t have surprised anyone that he would go to Denver, pretty much the graveyard team at that point in AFL history. As far as that goes, the entire history of the league itself!

  3. JonMeade says:

    Billy Joe was my football coach @
    Cheyney State (Cheyney U now)
    In 1978. Gr8 guy & gr8er mememories!
    I remember him showin off his Super Bowl
    Ring & his loud voice, HEY NOW!!!
    God bless him!!!!

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