Super Bowl I Remembered

Today marks the 51st anniversary of Super Bowl I. Last year, NFL Films pieced together a film of the entire game and broadcast it twice on NFL Network, although the network felt compelled to dress up the broadcast with blathering talking heads.

Rewatching the game film this year, a number of things struck me of interest:

Bart Starr was phenomenal on third down. He completed six of seven passes on that down for 100 yards and a touchdown. Len Dawson started out well on third down – four of five for 37 yards in the first half, but was zero for three with a pick-six in the second half when the Packers started to bring the heat.

Speaking of pass rush, the Chiefs sacked Starr twice in the Packers’ first possession, but only once more in the game (in the third quarter). Buck Buchanon, who played an angry game, and E.J. Holub each had one sack, while Bobby Bell and Jerry Mays shared one.

The Packers sacked the KC quarterbacks once in the second quarter, twice in the third and three times in the fourth. Willie Davis and Henry Jordan each had 1.5 sacks; Bob Brown and Ray Nitschke had one a piece; and Lee Roy Caffey and Lionel Aldridge each had a half sack.

Although jitterbugging Mike Garrett was very hard to tackle, he only tallied 45 yards from scrimmage on nine touches. The Chiefs gained more yards rushing, 38, from four quarterback scrambles than from 15 called runs that resulted in just 34 yards. Dawson was the team’s leading rusher with 24 yards.

The Packers very much played their game on offense with 27 called passes (pass attempts + times sacked + QB runs) and 33 called runs. During the regular season, the Packers averaged 28 called passes and 32 called runs.

Kansas City averaged 32 called passes and 28 called runs during the regular season, a mirror image of the Packers. In the Super Bowl, though, the Chiefs called 42 passes to just 15 runs. Even in the first half before the game became a rout, Kansas City called 18 passes to 10 runs. And they had some success with that until the blitzes began in the second half.

1966psplayoftheyear  1966tbstarr  1966twdavis  1966trnitschke

1966phjordan  1966pbbrown

Custom cards in 1966 Topps and Philadelphia styles.

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