Joe Namath and Kenny Graham
Joe Namath’s first trip to San Diego was not a successful one for Broadway Joe. Namath went 18-34 for 179 yards, and three interceptions as the Chargers trounced the Jets by a score of 38-7. One person that should be recognized in this video, however, is Kenny Graham, the Chargers defensive back that returned an interception 51 yards for a touchdown. Graham is often overlooked as a star on the Chargers, but he was a fearless safety that could hit like a freight train. His teammate, Bob Petrich, recalled Graham’s intensity in a game against hte Chiefs. “We were playing Kansas City one time in San Diego, and Kenny was our safety. He was like Rodney Harrison, you know, that type of guy. Fearless, antagonistic. We were just controlling these guys, and they wouldn’t run on our side. We stopped them everywhere. They stopped running. So Kenny would get up to the line and start yelling, ‘Why don’t you run over here, you chicken shit!’”
Regarding Graham’s athleticism, Petrich said, “He was just a wild guy. He was the 13th-round draft choice and he’s the most underrated guy. He was the concrete that held the team together. He could stuff a basketball. Lance couldn’t dunk. They measured Lance’s jump when he went for a football–his head would have hit the rim. Graham could, and he was only 6 feet tall. ”
Kenny Graham retired with 28 interceptions in his seven-year career. He was a four-time AFL All-Star, and was named to the AFL’s All-Time Second Team.