Did The Green Bay Packers Have A Football Game Today NFL Films to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the AFL

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NFL Films to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the AFL

Most of us are too young to remember the good old days of Joe Namath and John Madden, two of the most influential people associated with the American Football League. Beginning September 16, Showtime will air a five-part documentary titled Full Color Football: The History of the American Football League. Airing every Wednesday at 8:00pm Eastern, the programming offers insight into the unique brand of football and originality of AFL member clubs. AFL footage courtesy of NFL Films, which chronicled and documented the league from 1960-1969.

Most people don’t realize that the AFL helped change the way all sports are played. You see Michael Jordan sticking out his tongue as he glides through the air, before Tiger Woods pumps his fists as he sinks the winning putt, before all the touchdown dances in every football game today. There is no celebration after being considered disrespectful to your opponent as the game is considered a gentleman’s game.

That all changed with the birth of the AFL. The AFL began when league founder Lamar Hunt tried to buy an NFL team but was turned down by the NFL. He came up with the idea after being frustrated by not being able to buy a team while flying on a plane. With a lot of hard work he put together an eight team league and set out to prove that he could build a league to rival the mighty NFL. The eight teams were the Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, Dallas Texans, Boston Patriots, New York Titans, Oakland Raiders, Los Angeles Chargers and Houston Oilers.

The league started out with hardly anyone attending the games, but it soon took off when people started seeing the flamboyant style of play. The kids were high-fiving each other on the field, while Joe Namath, the quarterback for the New York Jets, was wearing a fur coat on the sideline, having fun and seats quickly filling up.

While the league was fun to watch with all the enthusiasm shown by the players, it was not just a showboat league. The AFL had many talented players who were inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, legends such as Fred Biletnikoff, Willie Brown, Bob Griese, Larry Little, OJ Simpson, Gene Upshaw and Art Schell. Even my nine and four year olds know the name John Madden, not because they saw him coach the Oakland Raiders, but because of the video games they love to play. Not only did the AFL revolutionize pro football, buying your favorite team’s merchandise became commonplace then and now.

The AFL eventually merged with the NFL in the 1970s and helped shape the league we know today. While some teams have remained in the same position since their inaugural AFL season, some teams have changed names or locations. The Dallas Texans are now the Kansas City Chiefs, the Boston Patriots adopted a territory and play today as the New England Patriots, the New York Titans changed their name to the New York Jets, their home, Shea Stadium near busy airports in New York, and the Houston Oilers moved northeast to become the Tennessee Titans. .

During the 2009–10 NFL season, the AFL’s eight original teams will wear their old retro uniforms when they play against each other in celebration of the AFL’s 50th anniversary. Some of the worst in uniforms since Adam West with 1960’s Batman and Robin. This shows how far football has come.

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