Lance Alworth It should come as a surprise to no one by now that I enjoy collecting autographed AFL trading cards. They can be found in nearly every post on this site. But I recently completed the 1962 Union Oil San Diego Chargers set, a project that took me 18 years to finish and is cause for a post all it's own. The 1962 Union Oil San Diego Chargers set is a series of 6"x 8" cards printed on thin stock and featuring Chargers players. The subjects are portrayed in detailed sketches by an artist named Sam Patrick, along with the player name and Chargers logo. The backs consist of personal statistics, a relatively detailed biography, the Union 76 logo and UNION OIL COMPANY OF CALIFORNIA. The cards were given with gasoline purchases to patrons of Union 76 stations in the San Diego. The 16-card set includes many of the big Chargers names of the day, including Keith Lincoln, Paul Lowe, Ron Mix, Don Norton, Dave Kocourek and the members of the Chargers' Fearsome Foursome, Ernie Ladd, Earl Faison, Bill Hudson and Ron Nery. The two most important cards of the set are undoubtedly the Lance Alworth and John Hadl issues, both of which were released prior to their [...]
#116 - Winston Hill Last week I was busy bemoaning the fact that in their expanded 2020 induction class the Pro Football Hall of Fame only had one former AFL'er in their finalist group, the Jets' tackle, Winston Hill. While I still believe that the AFL was shorted overall, I was thrilled to learn this morning that Winston Hill had been named one of 10 senior finalists for the Class of 2020. Winston Hill was a legendary tackle and is the most decorated Jets' player in team history. Quite an accomplishment when you consider some of the names that have worn the kelly green. Consider the following paragraph from an article posted today on the Jets website: Hill, the most decorated Jet in franchise history, was chosen to play in four AFL All-Star Games (1964, 1967-69) and four Pro Bowls (1970-73). He holds the franchise mark for offensive linemen with 195 consecutive games played and 174 consecutive starts despite breaking a leg in the 1965 preseason and having his throat stepped on in 1974. A quick glance at how Hill's career compares to other Hall of Fame tackles makes one wonder why he was overlooked for the last 40 years of his life. A lack of appreciation for his [...]
#095 - Winston Hill In conjunction with the NFL's 100th anniversary, the Pro Football Hall of Fame has expanded their induction class this year to include 10 senior members. While the intention of the larger class was at least partly to open up the log jam of worthy candidates, the AFL will be again be given short shrift in the effort. While there are many former AFL stars worthy of induction, former New York Jets' tackle, Winston Hill, is the only AFL player to be named a Hall of Fame finalist. My commentary is no slight on Hill, who is an outstanding candidate and long overdue induction. It is more a statement of the American Football League again being overlooked by Hall of Fame voters. I do not think even the most ardent of fans believed that all of the deserving AFL'ers would be recognized, but to say that only one AFL star is worthy of being a top 20 candidate is an insult. But let's save the lamenting for later and celebrate what we have before us. The Jets Legend Winston Hill is a Pro Football Hall of Fame Finalist.
I reserve a late post each year for us all to remember those AFL personalities who passed away in the past year. Sadly, we lost many great athletes and men in 2019. Please take a moment to remember the following people and their contributions to the league we all remember so fondly. NAME AFL TEAM(S) POSITION AGE DATE OF DEATH Jerry Magee Chargers Media 90 1/2/2019 Joe O'Donnell Bills G-T 77 1/17/2019 Dale Dodrill Broncos LB-Coach 92 1/18/2019 Duane Benson Raiders LB 73 1/26/2019 Glen Ray Hines Oilers T 75 2/1/2019 Joe Auer Bills, Dolphins RB 77 3/9/2019 John Yaccino Bills DB 78 3/20/2019 Clem Daniels Raiders HB-DB 83 3/23/2019 Joe Bellino Patriots HB 81 3/28/2019 Johnny Green Bills, Titans/Jets QB 81 4/24/2019 Dan LaRose Broncos T-DE-G 80 4/27/2019 Dan Conners Raiders LB 78 4/28/2019 Bob Zeman Chargers, Broncos DB-Coach 82 5/3/2019 Jack Rudolph Patriots, Dolphins LB 81 6/23/2019 Walt Michaels Jets LB-Coach 89 7/10/2019 Donald Chelf Bills T-G 86 7/16/2019 Bert Rechichar Titans DB-LB-HB-E 89 7/19/2019 Keith Lincoln Chargers, Bills FB-HB 80 7/27/2019 Nick Buoniconti Patriots, Dolphins LB 78 7/30/2019 Herman Urenda Raiders E-DB 81 8/7/2019 Al Carmichael Broncos HB 90 9/7/2019 Al Crow Patriots DT 87 9/12/2019 Larry Garron Patriots HB-FB 82 9/13/2019 Barron Hilton Chargers Owner 91 9/19/2019 [...]
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Season's Greetings and every other wish of a wonderful holiday season to you all. Thank you for reading Tales from the American Football League! Todd Tobias