January 7, 1963 - The Houston Oilers representatives to the 1963 AFL All-Star Game. Back Row - Rich Michael, Ed Husmann, Bob Talamini, Charlie Hennigan, Don Floyd, George Blanda. Front Row - Freddy Glick, Jim Norton, Tony Banfield, Bob Schmidt, Charlie Tolar, Al Jamison.

January 13, 1963 - Austin Gonsoulin of the Denver Broncos makes a leaping interception in front of the Houston Oilers Charlie Hennigan, in the second annual AFL All-Star Game.

November 11, 1962 - The San Diego Chargers Ernie Ladd prepares to tackle Cookie Gilchrist, the Buffalo Bills star running back and 1962 AFL Most Valuable Player.

November 15, 1964 - The Chargers defense swarms over Chiefs running back, Curtis McClinton.

November 6, 1964 - George Blanda drops back against the Patriots defense in Fenway Park.

November 23, 1967 - Daryle Lamonica and the Raiders facing the tough Chiefs defense in Kansas City Municipal Stadium.

 

An Interview with the Chiefs Noland Smith

The Kansas City Chiefs of the late 1960s were one of the dominant teams in AFL history.  They had future Hall of Fame members on offense, defense, and special teams.  Their owner and head coach have busts in Canton, and one could argue that the induction of at least four other team members is long overdue.

Mixed up in all of that greatness was an outstanding kick returner as well.  Standing just 5’5″ among the greats of the game, it is understandable how Noland Smith may be overlooked.  But he proved on many occasions that he deserved a spot alongside his massive teammates.  In his short, 39-game career, Smith led the AFL in yards-per-kick-off-return (1967) and yards-per-punt-return (1968).  He had a 106-yard kick off return for a touchdown as a rookie, and returned a punt for 80 yards and six points the following year.  He led the AFL in both kick off & punt returns, and in kick off & punt return yardage in 1967. read more

Alworth, Cappelletti & Robinson Autographed Card Pages

Regardless of what is happening in the world, professional sports, or my house, I continue to look to trading cards as a source of relaxation.  This past off-season has been no different, and I have been fortunate to add a number of interesting autographed AFL cards to my collection.  I will add them to the site in weeks to come, but kicked off that process today with new pages dedicated to three of my favorite AFL stars. read more

AFL Legend Babe Parilli Passes Away

Babe Parilli, a quarterback who had and excellent career in the AFL with the Raiders, Patriots and Jets, after playing his first five seasons in the NFL, passed away today at the age of 87.  The Patriots website posted an article on Parilli.

Former Patriots QB Vito ‘Babe’ Parilli Passed Away

A New AFL Season is Nearly Upon Us

It has not been an easy off-season for fans of the American Football League.  With the equivalent of a sneaking out in the night and leaving a note on the pillow, the Chargers moved to Los Angeles after 56 years in San Diego.  Shortly thereafter, the Raiders announced that they will be moving to Las Vegas for the 2019 season.  Some of our favorites left us for the great sideline in the sky, most recently 10-year AFL player and Super Bowl III winner, Larry Grantham. read more

“Earthquake” Hunt Gets His Man

jim hunt and john hadl

I am in the midst of scanning more than 1,000 vintage Chargers images from the 1960s.  Tons of game action from the entire decade.  I very much enjoy looking at the details of each photo, identifying the players, checking out the backgrounds, stadium backdrops and the like.  I came across this image from the August 27, 1966 preseason game between the Chargers and Patriots at Balboa Stadium.  The image shows the Patriots’ Jim Lee Hunt hitting John Hadl on a pass rush,a move that would likely get him a 15-yard penalty today, but was perfectly legal in the 1960s.  Jim “Earthquake” Hunt was a four-time AFL All-Star and one of just 20 10-year AFL players. read more