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50 Years Later And Other NFL Notes

December 18, 2020

There are no rematches exactly 50 years later, in NFL play this weekend.

Then, the NFL concluded its first AFC/NFC configuration season, with one game on Saturday December 19, 1970 and twelve the next day.

This year, two more weeks of play will remain after one Thursday game, two Saturday, one Monday and again 12 on a Sunday December 20th, in the 32 team NFL.

On Saturday December 19, 1970 the eventual champion, then, BALTIMORE Colts, beat the New York Jets (35-20).

Some “M’s” notes: Dallas quarterback Don “M”eredith could not quite get the Cowboys to a Super Bowl, the excellent team, losing heartbreaking NFL title games to the Green Bay Packers in 1966 and 1967.

On December 20, 1970, getting help from Pat Studstill (2 touchdown catches) and the Rams, who beat the Giants, Dallas made the ‘offs, as the NFC East winner and eventually the 5th Supe.

In the last day win vs the Houston Oilers, (now that franchise is the Tennessee Titans), Craig “M”orton threw 5 touchdown passes in a (52-10) rout. Morton later took another team to a Supe, the ’77 Denver Broncos, only to lose, as his team did in that 5th Super Bowl, this time to his former team, the Cowboys.

Backing up the injured and great John Unitas, Earl “M”orrall led the 1968 Baltimore Colts to 15 wins in 16 games, including easy wins in two NFL playoff games.

However, the Joe Namath/Matt Snell led New York Jets derailed them, as incredible 18 point underdogs, in the third Super Bowl.

Two years later, Morrall first threw 4 touchdown passes in the aforementioned “reg” finale win vs the Jets and then teamed with Unitas, as the Colts quarterback in the aforementioned 5th Supe game win vs Morton and the Cowboys.

In 1970, Unitas started at “QB,” in all 3 ‘offs wins (he did not play in the two ‘offs wins in ’68 and many felt he was inserted too late in the Supe loss to the Jets), though Morrall finished the Supe win at the position, even holding on Jim O’Brien’s Super Bowl winning field goal (as NFL guru, great executive and supreme baseball fan, Ernie Accorsi notes on a fine video about the ’70 Colts, Irv Goode, acquired for such a purpose, snapped the ball on Jim’s historic kick).

Finally, a, if not the key play in the Colts (27-17) AFC title game, home win vs the then Oakland Raiders, was a long Unitas to Ray Perkins touchdown pass.

Sadly, Perkins, who like Accorsi, contributed mightily to a turn around in the New York Giants’ fortunes, that eventually led to TWO Super Bowl wins, died weeks back.


refer to caption

Earl Morrall, pictured above.

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