One of the ongoing themes of debate in professional football history is whether a championship team from one decade would beat another top team from a different era. Those discussions are fun, and can be applied in many different ways.
As for AFL teams, which championship teams would be the best? Would the 1960 Oilers beat the 1967 Raiders? Why? Why not? Here are two matchups that I would love to somehow see.
- 1963 San Diego Chargers vs. 1964 Buffalo Bills – Yes, the Bills beat the Chargers in ’64 & ’65. However, those Chargers teams were not as good as the ’63 squad, which was strong, healthy, and that offense was firing on all cylinders. Tobin Rote was in his final dominant season, Lance Alworth was the AFL MVP, Lincoln & Lowe were probably the best back tandem in the league, and they had excellent secondary receivers in Norton and Kocourek. Meanwhile, the ’64 Bills have a bone-crushing defense. They allowed less than 1,000 rushing yards for the entire season, and led the league in several defensive categories. Their line was dominant with Sestak, Dunaway, McDole & Day, and their linebacking corps was no slouch with Stratton, Tracey and Jacobs.
- 1966 Kansas City Chiefs vs. 1969 Kansas City Chiefs – The losers of Super Bowl I vs. the winners of Super Bowl IV. What made one team so much better than the other? Was it that the Green Bay Packers were that much more dominant than the Minnesota Vikings? Or had the Chiefs made significant changes to their roster? Offensive lines are similar, with one difference at guard. Quarterback is the same, and there are some changes at running back and receiver. Otis Taylor was much more seasoned by 1969. There were slight changes on defense, but he core of Buchanan, Bell, Robinson, Mays, Holub, Thomas and Brown were there for both squads.
It would be interesting to see one of our rotisserie players pit these teams against each other and share the results with us. Other than that, I think that debating the hell out of it is the only way that we will have any hope of solving these questions. Enjoy!