The 1925 NFL season was the sixth regular season of the National Football League. Five new teams entered the league: New York Giants, Detroit Panthers, Pottsville Maroons, Providence Steam Roller, and a new Canton Bulldogs team. The Kenosha Maroons folded, with the Racine Legion and Minneapolis Marines mothballing.
|1925 National Football League season|
|Duration||September 20 – December 20, 1925|
|A controversial ruling by the NFL suspended the Pottsville Maroons from all league privileges, including the right to play for the NFL championship.|
Controversy surrounds who actually won the 1925 NFL Championship. Officially, the Chicago Cardinals are listed as the 1925 NFL champions because they finished with the best record; however, many Pottsville fans at the time claimed that the Maroons were the legitimate champions. The Maroons and the Cardinals were the top contenders for the title, with Pottsville winning a late-season meeting between them, 21–7. But the Maroons scheduled a game against a team of University of Notre Dame All-Stars in Philadelphia (and winning 9–7) on the same day that the Frankford Yellow Jackets were scheduled to play a game in the same city. Frankford protested, saying that it was violating their protected territory rights.
Although NFL president Joe Carr warned the Maroons in writing that they faced suspension if they played in Philadelphia, the Maroons claimed that Carr approved the game during a telephone call, and played anyway. In response, Carr fined the club, suspended it from all league rights and privileges (including the right to play for the NFL championship), and returned its franchise to the league.
In 2003, the NFL decided to again examine the case regarding the 1925 championship. In October of that year, the NFL voted 30–2 not to reopen the case, with only Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, the league's two Pennsylvania-based teams, voting in favor. Thus, the Cardinals are still listed as the 1925 NFL champions.
Had the current (post-1972) system of counting ties as half a win and half a loss been in place in 1925, the Maroons would have won the championship with a win percentage of .833, while the Cardinals would have finished runner-up at .821.
|Chicago Cardinals *||11||2||1||.846||229||65||W2|
|Pottsville Maroons *||10||2||0||.833||270||45||W5|
|New York Giants||8||4||0||.667||122||67||W1|
|Frankford Yellow Jackets||13||7||0||.650||190||169||W2|
|Rock Island Independents||5||3||3||.625||99||58||L1|
|Green Bay Packers||8||5||0||.615||151||110||W1|
|Providence Steam Roller||6||5||1||.545||111||101||L1|
|Kansas City Cowboys||2||5||1||.286||65||97||W1|
Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.
* The Pottsville Maroons were suspended from the league in December, resulting in the Chicago Cardinals being named the NFL champions.
The 1925 All-Pro Team consists of American football players chosen by various selectors as the best players at their positions for the All-Pro team of the National Football League (NFL) for the 1925 NFL season.1925 NFL Championship controversy
The 1925 National Football League Championship, claimed by the Chicago Cardinals, has long been the subject of controversy. The controversy centers on the suspension of the Pottsville Maroons by NFL commissioner Joseph Carr, which prevented them from taking the title.
The Maroons were one of the dominant teams of the 1925 season, and after defeating the Chicago Cardinals on December 6, came away with the best record in the league. However, Carr suspended and removed the team from the NFL after they played an unauthorized exhibition game in Philadelphia, on the grounds that they had violated the territorial rights of the Frankford Yellow Jackets. Chicago played and won two more games against weak NFL opponents, but were sanctioned because a Chicago player, Art Folz, hired four Chicago high school football players to play for the Milwaukee Badgers under assumed names to ensure a Cardinals victory.
Pottsville supporters argue that the suspension was illegitimate because the League did not then grant exclusive territory rights and that, in any event, they had verbal League approval to play the game in Philadelphia. Further, they argue that the Maroons, who were reinstated the next year, would have had the best record had they not been suspended. Others claim that Chicago were the legitimate champions based on the rules of the time. In 1963, the NFL investigated and rejected Pottsville's case, and in 2003 refused to reopen the case. Both the NFL and the Pro Football Hall of Fame continue to list the Cardinals as the 1925 NFL champion.Charlie Berry
Charles Francis Berry (October 18, 1902 – September 6, 1972) was an American athlete and sports official who enjoyed careers as a catcher and umpire in Major League Baseball and as an end and official in the National Football League. His father, Charlie Sr., was a second baseman who played in the Union Association in 1884.Charlie Richardson (American football)
Charles A. Richardson (September 12, 1906 – March 27, 1977) was a blocking back in the National Football League. He was a member of the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1925 NFL season.Chet Gay
Chester Joseph "Chet" Gay (January 8, 1900 – March 11, 1978) was an American football player in the National Football League. He first played with the Buffalo Bisons during the 1925 NFL season before playing the following season with the Milwaukee Badgers.Chuck Reichow
Chuck Reichow (March 19, 1901 – March 29, 1993) was a fullback in the National Football League. He played with the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1925 NFL season before playing the following season with the Racine Tornadoes.Darroll DeLaPorte
Darroll DeLaPorte (October 30, 1903 – December 25, 1980) was a player in the National Football League. He was a member of the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1925 NFL season.Elmer Wilkens
Elmer Sutter Wilkens (June 26, 1901 – March 18, 1967) was an American football player in the National Football League. He played with the Green Bay Packers during the 1925 NFL season.George Vergara
George Aloysius Vergara (March 18, 1901 – August 13, 1982) was a player in the National Football League. He played with the Green Bay Packers during the 1925 NFL season. He later served as mayor of New Rochelle, New York.Hal Erickson (American football)
Harold Ingvald Alexander Erickson (March 10, 1898 – January 27, 1963) was an American football back who played for three teams over eight seasons in the National Football League (NFL), four with the Chicago Cardinals, including the 1925 NFL Champion team.History of the National Football League championship
Throughout its history, the National Football League (NFL) and other rival American football leagues have used several different formats to determine their league champions, including a period of inter-league matchups determining a true national champion.
Following its founding in 1920, the NFL first determined champions through end-of-season standings, but switched to a playoff system in 1933. The rival All-America Football Conference (AAFC) and American Football League (AFL) have since merged with the NFL (the only two AAFC teams that currently exist joined the NFL in 1950—the Cleveland Browns and the San Francisco 49ers), but AAFC championship games and records are not included in NFL record books. The AFL began play in 1960 and, like its rival league, used a playoff system to determine its champion.
From 1966–1969 prior to the merger in 1970, the NFL and the AFL agreed to hold an ultimate championship game, first called the AFL-NFL World Championship Game and later renamed the Super Bowl after 1968. Following the merger in 1970, the Super Bowl name continued as the game to determine the NFL champion. The most important factor of the merger was that all ten AFL teams joined the NFL in 1970 and every AFL championship game and record is included in NFL record books. The old NFL Championship Game became the NFC Championship Game, while the old AFL Championship Game became the AFC Championship Game. The NFL lists the old AFL/NFL championship games with "new" AFC/NFC championship games in its record books. The Green Bay Packers have won the most championships with 13 total (9 NFL championships pre-merger, four (4) Super Bowl championships). The Packers are also the only team to win three consecutive championships, having done so twice (1929–1931, 1965–1967). The Chicago Bears have won the second most overall championships with nine (9) (eight NFL championships, one Super Bowl championship).John Fahay
John Fahay (June 16, 1902 – January 8, 1980) was a player in the National Football League. He was a member of the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1925 NFL season before playing the following season with the Racine Tornadoes during the 1926 NFL season. That same year he was also a member of the Chicago Bulls of the American Football League. After two years away from professional football, he played with the Minneapolis Red Jackets during the 1929 NFL season.List of NFL champions (1920–1969)
The National Football League champions, prior to the merger between the National Football League (NFL) and American Football League (AFL) in 1970, were determined by two different systems. The National Football League was established on September 17, 1920, as the American Professional Football Association (APFA). The APFA changed its name in 1922 to the National Football League, which it has retained ever since.From 1921 to 1931, the APFA/NFL determined its champion by overall win–loss record, with no playoff games; ties were not counted in the winning percentage total. The APFA did not keep records of the 1920 season; they declared the Akron Pros, who finished the season with an 8–0–3 (8 wins, 0 losses, 3 ties) record, as the league's first champions, by a vote of the owners, with the Buffalo-All Americans and Decatur Staleys also claiming the title. According to modern-tie breaking rules, the Buffalo All-Americans tied Akron for the championship. The Canton Bulldogs won two straight championships from 1922 to 1923, and the Green Bay Packers won three in a row from 1929 to 1931.There also has been controversy over the championshipships of the 1921 APFA season and the 1925 NFL season, with the Buffalo All-Americans laying claim to another championship in an incident known as the "Staley Swindle" and the Pottsville Maroons being stripped of their championship in 1925 for playing an exhibition game against college football powerhouse Notre Dame's famed Four Horsemen, leading to a last minute field goal victory for the Maroons, stunning the crowd and nation, and also put the NFL ahead of college football for the first time ever. These three disputed championships contributed to the beginning of the NFL's rich history.
The 1932 NFL season resulted in a tie for first place between the Chicago Bears and Portsmouth Spartans, and could not be resolved by the typical win–loss system. To settle the tie, a playoff game was played; Chicago won the game and the championship. The following year, the NFL split into two divisions, and the winner of each division would play in the NFL Championship Game. In 1967, the NFL and the rival AFL agreed to merge, effective following the 1969 season; as part of this deal, the NFL champion from 1966 to 1969 would play the AFL champion in an AFL–NFL World Championship Game in each of the four seasons before the completed merger. The NFL Championship Game was ended after the 1969 season, succeeded by the NFC Championship Game. The champions of that game play the champions of the AFC Championship Game in the Super Bowl to determine the NFL champion.The Green Bay Packers won the most NFL championships before the merger, winning eleven of the fifty championships. The Packers were also the only team to win three straight championships, an achievement they accomplished twice: from 1929–31 and from 1965–67. The Chicago Bears won a total of eight titles, and the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, and New York Giants each won four. The Bears recorded the largest victory in a championship game, defeating the Washington Redskins 73–0 in the 1940 NFL Championship Game; six other title games ended in a shutout as well. The Philadelphia Eagles recorded two consecutive shutouts in 1948 and 1949. New York City hosted the most championship games (eight), while the highest-attended title game was the 1955 NFL Championship Game, where 85,693 fans showed up in Los Angeles to watch the Browns beat the Rams 38–14.Louis A. Merrilat
Louis Alfred "Merry" Merrilat, Jr. (June 9, 1892 – April 26, 1948) was an American football end and military officer. He played college football with Army and was selected as a first-team All-American in both 1913 and 1914. He was wounded in battle while serving in France during World War I and later played in the National Football League for the Canton Bulldogs in the 1925 NFL season. He became a soldier of fortune, training Iran's Persian Guard, working with the Chinese Army in the 1930s, and serving in the French Foreign Legion.Mush Crawford
Walter Charles "Mush" Crawford (December 23, 1898 – October 27, 1966) was an American football player and coach. He played professionally as a guard in the National Football League (NFL). Crawford first played with the Chicago Bears during the 1925 NFL season. During the 1927 NFL season he played with the New York Yankees. He also had been a member of the Chicago Bulls of the American Football League during the 1926 American Football League season.
Crawford served as the head football coach at San Jose State University from 1929 to 1931 and at the Stout Institute—now known as the University of Wisconsin–Stout—from 1935 to 1937.Rochester Jeffersons
The Rochester Jeffersons from Rochester, New York played from 1898 to 1925, including play in the National Football League from 1920 to 1925.Russ Blailock
William Russell Blailock, Jr. was an American football player in the National Football League. He first played with the Milwaukee Badgers during the 1923 NFL season. After a year away from the NFL, he played with the Akron Pros during the 1925 NFL season. He died of a heart attack in 1972.Steve Hanson (American football)
Stephen Harold Hanson (April 27, 1902 - August 1, 1981) was a player in the National Football League. He was a member of the Kansas City Cowboys during the 1925 NFL season, but did not see any playing time during a regular season game. The following season, he was a member of the Louisville Colonels.Wally O'Neill
Wally O'Neill (born Richard Wallace O'Neill) was a player in the National Football League. He played for the Duluth Kelleys during the 1925 NFL season.
1925 NFL season