Wednesday, January 15, 2014
NFL Debuts Super Bowl
On Jan. 15, 1967, the NFL would host the first ever Super Bowl.
The site was Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, Calif. and the Green Bay Packers, led by quarterback Bart Starr, defeated Len Dawson and the Kansas City Chiefs by a score of 35-10.
Green Bay scored three touchdowns in the second half to break open a close game that was only 14-10 at the halfway point. Starr was 16-for-23 and 250 yards en route to being named the game's MVP.
The historic day marked the first-ever contest between the NFL and AFL, which were in competition with each other at the time.
The game was created as part of a merger agreement between the NFL and its then-rival league, the American Football League (AFL). It was agreed that the two leagues' champion teams would play in an AFL–NFL World Championship Game until the merger was to officially begin in 1970. After the merger, each league was redesignated as a "conference", and the game was then played between the conference champions. Currently, the National Football Conference (NFC) leads the series with 25 wins to 21 wins for the American Football Conference (AFC).
Three years later, the leagues merged and the single-greatest game in American team sports took off to become an advertising juggernaut, which is because the Super Bowl every year is one of the most watched sporting events on television.
But it is not just about television and advertising, the Super Bowl is about showing your dominance over the league, and bringing home a Vince Lombardi Trophy to your fans.
The day on which the Super Bowl is played, now considered by some a de facto American national holiday, is called "Super Bowl Sunday". It is the second-largest day for U.S. food consumption, after Thanksgiving Day.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have won six Super Bowls, the most of any team; the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers have five victories each; and both the Green Bay Packers and New York Giants have four Super Bowls championships.
Thirteen other NFL franchises have won at least one Super Bowl.
Ten teams have appeared in Super Bowl games without a win.
The Minnesota Vikings were the first team to have lost a record four times without a win. The Buffalo Bills played in a record four Super Bowls in a row, and lost every one. Four teams (the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Houston Texans) have never appeared in a Super Bowl.
The Browns and Lions both won NFL Championships prior to the Super Bowl's creation, while the Jaguars (1995) and Texans (2002) are both recent NFL expansion teams.
The Minnesota Vikings won the last NFL Championship before the merger, but lost to the AFL champion Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl IV.