1934 NFL season

The 1934 NFL season was the 15th regular season of the National Football League. Before the season, the Portsmouth Spartans moved from Ohio to Detroit, Michigan, and were renamed the Detroit Lions.

The Cincinnati Reds lost their first eight games, then were suspended for not paying league dues. The St. Louis Gunners, an independent team, played the last 3 games of the season for the Reds.

The Ed Thorp Memorial Trophy was established as the league's award for the NFL champion, and was awarded through 1969. The host team for the NFL Championship Game would now alternate between the two divisions, with the Eastern Division champion hosting in even-numbered years, and the Western champion hosting in odd-numbered years.[1]

The season ended with the NFL Championship Game when the New York Giants defeated the Chicago Bears at the Polo Grounds in what has become known as the "Sneakers Game".

1934 National Football League season
Regular season
DurationSeptember 9 – December 9, 1934
East ChampionsNew York Giants
West ChampionsChicago Bears
Championship Game
ChampionsNew York Giants

Major rule changes

  • A hand-to-hand forward pass made behind the line of scrimmage that becomes incomplete (hits the ground before it is caught) is to be ruled as a fumble.

Final standings

P = Games Played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, PCT= Winning Percentage, PF= Points For, PA = Points Against

Eastern Division
New York Giants 13 8 5 0 .615 147 107
Boston Redskins 12 6 6 0 .500 107 94
Brooklyn Dodgers 11 4 7 0 .364 61 153
Philadelphia Eagles 11 4 7 0 .364 127 85
Pittsburgh Pirates 12 2 10 0 .167 51 206
Western Division
Chicago Bears 13 13 0 0 1.000 286 86
Detroit Lions 13 10 3 0 .769 238 59
Green Bay Packers 13 7 6 0 .538 156 112
Chicago Cardinals 11 5 6 0 .455 80 84
St. Louis Gunners 3 1 2 0 .333 27 61
Cincinnati Reds 8 0 8 0 .000 10 243

NFL Championship Game

N.Y. Giants 30, Chi. Bears 13 at Polo Grounds, New York City, December 9, 1934

League leaders

Statistic Name Team Yards
Passing Arnie Herber Green Bay 799
Rushing Beattie Feathers Chicago Bears 1004
Receiving Harry Ebding Detroit Lions 264

Coaching changes


  1. ^ "Thorp memorial trophy for pro football champs". The Day. New London, Connecticut. Associated Press. July 2, 1934. p. 14.
  • NFL Record and Fact Book (ISBN 1-932994-36-X)
  • NFL History 1931–1940 (Last accessed December 4, 2005)
  • [1]
  • Total Football: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League (ISBN 0-06-270174-6)
1934 All-Pro Team

The 1934 All-Pro Team consisted of American football players chosen by various selectors for the All-Pro team of the National Football League (NFL) for the 1934 NFL season. Teams were selected by, among others, the Associated Press (AP), the United Press (UP), the Green Bay Press-Gazette (GB) based on the composite view of the coaches of 10 NFL teams and a half dozen NFL officials, Collyer's Eye (CE), and the Chicago Daily News (CDN).Players displayed in bold were consensus first-team selections. Five players were selected as first-team All-Pro players by all five selectors: Detroit Lions quarterback Dutch Clark; Chicago Bears halfback Beattie Feathers; Chicago Bears fullback Bronko Nagurski; Chicago Bears end Bill Hewitt; and New York Giants center Mel Hein.

1934 St. Louis Gunners season

The 1934 St. Louis Gunners season was their sole season in the league. The team won its first game before losing its final two.On August 8, 1934, before the start of the NFL season, St. Louis purchased the NFL's Cincinnati Reds for $20,000. However, the Gunners needed the other league owners to approve the sale. Only then would the Gunners be official members. On August 17, the other owners decided to reject the Gunners bid to buy the Reds, probably because St. Louis was too far removed from the rest of the clubs, all in the Northeast, and yearly trips there would have increased travel expenses. Meanwhile the Gunners declined membership into the minor league American Football League. As a result, the new league decided to form the St. Louis Blues. Gunners GM Bud Yates was credited with founding the team. The Blues even lured Dick Frahm away from the Gunners and even took over the lease of Public Schools Stadium. As a result, the Gunners moved their home games to Sportsman's Park. Meanwhile Chile Walsh became the team's fourth head coach in four years.

The Gunners started their 1934 season, 5–0 against several semi-pro teams. The team was searching desperately for decent teams to compete against. However on November 6, 1934, the NFL finally approved the sale of the Cincinnati Reds to St. Louis for $20,000 – $30,000. The Gunners were now officially members of the NFL and were invited to play the Reds last 3 games of the 1934 NFL season. The Blues then moved to Kansas City two days later in order to avoid fighting the Gunners for control of the St. Louis fanbase.

Ace Gutowsky

LeRoy Erwin "Ace" Gutowsky (August 2, 1909 – December 4, 1976) was an American football fullback. He played professional football for eight years from 1932 to 1939 and set the NFL career rushing record in October 1939. He held the Detroit Lions' career and single-season rushing records until the 1960s.

Bobby Jones (offensive lineman)

Robert Irven "Bobby" Jones (March 30, 1912 – March 25, 1999) was a guard in the National Football League.

Carl Jorgensen (American football)

Carl Anker Overgaard Jorgensen (February 5, 1911 – July 2, 1984) was a player in the National Football League.

Cy Casper

Charles Andrew "Cy" Casper (May 28, 1912 – March 7, 1968) was a player in the National Football League.

Earl Witte

Earl John Witte (December 12, 1906 - November 1, 1991) was an American football player in the National Football League. He played with the Green Bay Packers during the 1934 NFL season.

Ed Aspatore

Edward Charles Aspatore (June 23, 1909 – March 14, 1986) was a player in the National Football League.

Fred Ratterman

Lawrence Frederick Ratterman (August 9, 1912 – March 6, 1988) was an American football player. Ratterman attended St. Mary's High School and Withrow High School in Cincinnati, Ohio before enrolling at the University of Michigan. He played halfback and quarterback for the Michigan Wolverines football team in 1930, 1932, and 1933. He also played professional football for the Cincinnati Reds for one game during the 1934 NFL season. He was 0-for-3 passing and gained one yard on two carries as a rusher.

Harry Wunsch

Harry Frederick Wunsch (November 20, 1910 – April 30, 1954) was a guard in the National Football League. He played with the Green Bay Packers during the 1934 NFL season.

History of Michigan Wolverines football in the Kipke years

The history of Michigan Wolverines football in the Kipke years covers the history of the University of Michigan Wolverines football program during the period from the hiring of Harry Kipke as head coach in 1929 through his firing after the 1937 season. Michigan was a member of the Big Ten Conference during the Kipke years and played its home games at Michigan Stadium.

During the nine years in which Kipke served as head football coach, Michigan claimed two national championships (1932 and 1933) and had an additional undefeated season in 1930. From 1930 to 1933, Kipke's teams won four consecutive Big Ten Conference co-championships, lost only one game, gave up only 81 points (2.38 points per game), and compiled a record of 31-1-3 (.929). However, in the final four years under Kipke, the team never had a winning season and compiled a record of 10-22 (.313). Kipke was fired after the 1937 season and replaced by Fritz Crisler.

Two Michigan players from the Kipke years have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. They are Harry Newman (quarterback, 1930–1932) and Whitey Wistert (tackle, 1932–1933). A third, Bill Hewitt, was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Gerald Ford, who played for Michigan from 1932 to 1934, went on to serve as the 38th President of the United States.

List of Detroit Lions head coaches

The Detroit Lions are a professional American football team based in Detroit, Michigan. They are currently a member of the North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The franchise has had 27 head coaches in team history, which includes its existence as the Portsmouth (Ohio) Spartans (1930–1933). In the 1934 NFL season, the franchise moved to Detroit and changed their name to the Lions.

George "Potsy" Clark is the only coach to have more than one tenure. Three coaches have won NFL championships with the team: Potsy Clark in 1935, Buddy Parker in 1952 and 1953, and George Wilson in 1957. Wayne Fontes is the all-time leader in games coached and wins, and Clark leads all coaches in winning percentage with .679 (with at least one full season coached). John Karcis is statistically the worst coach the Lions have had as he never won a game. Karcis is followed by Marty Mornhinweg with a winning percentage of .156.

Of the 27 Lions coaches, two have been elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame: Dutch Clark and Joe Schmidt. Gus Dorais was inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame as a coach in 1954. Several former players have been head coach for the Lions, including Dutch Edwards, Buddy Parker, Harry Gilmer, Joe Schmidt, and Dick Jauron. The current head coach of the Lions is Matt Patricia, who was hired on February 5, 2018.

Phil Peterson

Phil Peterson played for the Brooklyn Dodgers during the 1934 NFL season. He played at the collegiate level with the Wisconsin Badgers.

Sports in Cincinnati

Sports in Cincinnati includes three major league teams, eleven minor league teams, and five college institutions with sports teams. Cincinnati also has seven major sports venues.

St. Louis Gunners

The St. Louis Gunners were an independent professional football team based in St. Louis, Missouri, that played the last three games of the 1934 National Football League season, replacing the Cincinnati Reds on the league schedule after the Reds' league membership was suspended. They won their first game against the Pittsburgh Pirates (now Steelers) 6–0, but lost the last two to the Detroit Lions (40–7) and the Green Bay Packers (21–14). Six of the Reds players joined the team for the last two games. The team was headquartered at the St. Louis National Guard Armory, which accounts for its nickname the 'Gunners'.

1934 NFL season
Early era
Modern era

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