The 1947 National Football League Championship Game was the 15th annual National Football League (NFL) championship game, held December 28 at Comiskey Park in Chicago. The attendance was 30,759, well below capacity.
The game featured the Western Division champion Chicago Cardinals (9–3) and the Eastern Division champion Philadelphia Eagles (8–4). A week earlier, the Eagles defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 21–0 in a tiebreaker playoff to determine the Eastern winner. Both the Eagles and Cardinals were making their first appearances in the championship game. The Cardinals had won the regular season meeting in Philadelphia three weeks earlier by 24 points and after a week off, were 12-point favorites to win the title game at home.
This was the second NFL title game played after Christmas Day, and the latest to date. Scheduled for December 21, it was pushed back due to the Eastern division playoff. The temperature at kickoff was 29 °F (−2 °C).
The Cardinals built a 14–0 lead in the second quarter, then the teams traded touchdowns. The Eagles closed the gap to 28–21 with five minutes to go, but the Cardinals controlled the ball the rest of the game on an extended drive to win the title.
This was the only NFL title game played at Comiskey Park and remains as the Cardinals' only win. The two teams returned for a rematch in 1948 in Philadelphia, but the Eagles won in a snowstorm. The Cardinals have not won a league championship since this one in 1947, over seven decades ago, the longest drought in the NFL. They made it to the Super Bowl XLIII in the 2008 season, but lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This was the Cardinals' last playoff win as a franchise until January 1999; at 51 years and five days, it was the longest post-season win drought in NFL history. They relocated to St. Louis in 1960 and Arizona in 1988.
|1947 NFL Championship Game|
|Date||December 28, 1947|
|Stadium||Comiskey Park, Chicago, Illinois|
|Favorite||Cardinals by 12|
|Radio in the United States|
|Announcers||Harry Wismer, Red Grange|
Each player on the Cardinals received $1,132, while the losing Eagles got $754.
The 1947 Chicago Cardinals season was the franchise's 28th season in the National Football League. The Cardinals have won their second NFL championship against the Philadelphia Eagles. The team was led by its "Million Dollar Backfield" of Elmer Angsman, Charley Trippi, Paul Christman, and Pat Harder. As of the end of 2018, this is the team's last league championship. This championship drought is currently the longest active one in American professional sports. Until the 2018 season 71 years later, this also marked the last time the Cardinals beat the Green Bay Packers on the road.1948 NFL Championship Game
The 1948 National Football League Championship Game was the 16th title game of the National Football League (NFL), played at Shibe Park in Philadelphia on December 19.The game was a rematch of the previous year's title game between the defending champion Chicago Cardinals (11–1), champions of the Western Division and the Philadelphia Eagles (9–2–1), champions of the Eastern Division. The Cardinals were slight favorites, at 3½ points.It was the first NFL championship game to be televised and due to heavy snowfall, the grounds crew needed the help of players from both teams to remove the tarp from the field. The opening kickoff was delayed a half-hour until 2 p.m., and three extra officials were called into service to assist with out-of-bounds calls. The stadium lights were on for the entire game.The Eagles won their first NFL title with a 7–0 win; it was the first title for Philadelphia since 1926, when the Frankford Yellow Jackets won the league title, seven years prior to the introduction of the championship game.Alex Wojciechowicz
Alexander Francis "Wojie" Wojciechowicz (; August 12, 1915 – July 13, 1992) was an American football player from 1935 to 1950. He was a two-way player who played at center on offense and at linebacker on defense. He has been inducted into both the College and Pro Football Halls of Fame, was a founder and the first president of the NFL Alumni Association, and was the third player to receive the Order of the Leather Helmet.
Wojciechowicz played college football for the Fordham Rams from 1935 to 1937 and was a member of the line that became known as the Seven Blocks of Granite. He was selected as the consensus first-team All-American center in both 1936 and 1937.
Wojciechowicz was selected by the Detroit Lions in the first round of the 1938 NFL Draft and played for the Lions from 1938 to 1946. He was selected as a first-team All-NFL player in 1939 and 1944. In 1946, he was released by the Lions and then sold to the Philadelphia Eagles, for whom he played from 1946 to 1950. He won two NFL championships with the Eagles, in 1948 and 1949.Arizona Cardinals
The Arizona Cardinals are a professional American football franchise based in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The Cardinals compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member of the league's National Football Conference (NFC) West division. The Cardinals were founded as the Morgan Athletic Club in 1898, and are the oldest continuously run professional football team in the United States. The Cardinals play their home games at State Farm Stadium, which opened in 2006 and is located in the northwestern suburb of Glendale.
The team was established in Chicago in 1898 as an amateur football team and joined the NFL as a charter member on September 17, 1920. Along with the Chicago Bears, the club is one of two NFL charter member franchises still in operation since the league's founding. (The Green Bay Packers were an independent team until they joined the NFL a year after its creation in 1921.) The club then moved to St. Louis in 1960 and played in that city through 1987 (sometimes referred to as the "Football Cardinals" or the "Big Red" to avoid confusion with the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball). Before the 1988 season, the team moved west to Tempe, Arizona, a college suburb east of Phoenix, and played their home games for the next 18 seasons at Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University. In 2006, the club moved to their current home field in Glendale, although the team's executive offices and training facility remain in Tempe.
The franchise has won two NFL championships, both while it was based in Chicago. The first occurred in 1925, but is the subject of controversy, with supporters of the Pottsville Maroons believing that Pottsville should have won the title. Their second title, and the first to be won in a championship game, came in 1947, nearly two decades before the first Super Bowl. They returned to the title game to defend in 1948, but lost the rematch 7–0 in a snowstorm in Philadelphia.
Since winning the championship in 1947, the team suffered many losing seasons, and currently holds the longest active championship drought of North American sports at 70 consecutive seasons after Major League Baseball's Chicago Cubs ended their 108 year drought in 2016. In 2012 the Cardinals became the first NFL franchise to lose 700 games since its inception. The franchise's all-time win-loss record (including regular season and playoff games) at the conclusion of the 2018 season is 560–762–40 (553–753–40 in the regular season, 7–9 in the playoffs). They have been to the playoffs ten times and have won seven playoff games, three of which were victories during their run in the 2008–09 NFL playoffs. During that season, they won their only NFC Championship Game since the 1970 AFL–NFL merger, and reached Super Bowl XLIII (losing 27–23 to the Pittsburgh Steelers). The team has also won five division titles (1974, 1975, 2008, 2009 and 2015) since their 1947–48 NFL championship game appearances. The Cardinals are the only NFL team who have never lost a playoff game at home, with a 5–0 record: the 1947 NFL Championship Game, two postseason victories during the aforementioned 2008–09 NFL playoffs, one during the 2009–10 playoffs, and one during the 2015–16 playoffs.
From 1988 through 2012 (except 2005, when they trained in Prescott), the Cardinals conducted their annual summer training camp at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. The Cardinals moved their training camp to State Farm Stadium (then known as University of Phoenix Stadium) in 2013. The stadium was the site of the 2015 Pro Bowl, unlike in past years, where it was held at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii. The stadium also played host to Super Bowls XLII and XLIX, and will host Super Bowl LVII in 2023.Charley Trippi
Charles Louis Trippi (born December 14, 1921) is a former American football player. He played professionally for the Chicago Cardinals of the National Football League (NFL) from 1947 to 1955. Although primarily a running back, his versatility allowed him to fill a multitude of roles over his career, including quarterback, defensive back, punter, and return specialist. A "quintuple-threat", Trippi was adept at running, catching, passing, punting, and defense.
Trippi attended the University of Georgia, where he played college football for the Georgia Bulldogs from 1942 to 1946, with an interlude in 1944 while serving in the military during World War II. As a sophomore, he guided Georgia to victory in the 1943 Rose Bowl and was named the game's most valuable player. As a senior in 1946, he won the Maxwell Award as the nation's most outstanding college football player, was named the Southeastern Conference's player of the year, and earned unanimous first-team All-America recognition.
Drafted first overall by the Cardinals as a "future pick" in the 1945 NFL Draft, Trippi was also pursued by the New York Yankees of the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) as well as multiple professional baseball teams. He ultimately signed a record $100,000 contract with the Cardinals. As a rookie, Trippi led Chicago's "Million Dollar Backfield" to victory in the 1947 NFL Championship Game. By the time he retired he had compiled the most yards of total offense by a player in NFL history. Trippi was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1959 and the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1968.
Trippi is the oldest living member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the oldest living first overall NFL draft pick, and one of the oldest living former American football players.Comiskey Park
Comiskey Park was a baseball park in Chicago, Illinois, located in the Armour Square neighborhood on the near-southwest side of the city. The stadium served as the home of the Chicago White Sox of the American League from 1910 through 1990. Built by White Sox owner Charles Comiskey and designed by Zachary Taylor Davis, Comiskey Park hosted four World Series and more than 6,000 Major League Baseball games. Also, in one of the most famous boxing matches in history, the field was the site of the 1937 heavyweight title match in which Joe Louis defeated then champion James J. Braddock in eight rounds that launched Louis' unprecedented 11-plus year run as the heavyweight champion of the world.The Chicago Cardinals of the National Football League also called Comiskey Park home when they weren't playing at Normal Park, Soldier Field or Wrigley Field. They won the 1947 NFL Championship Game over the Philadelphia Eagles at Comiskey Park. Much less popular than the Bears, the Cardinals' last season at Comiskey was 1958, and they left for St. Louis in March 1960. The Chicago American Giants of the Negro American League called Comiskey Park home from 1941–1950.Adjacent to the south (across 35th Street), a new ballpark opened in 1991, and Comiskey Park was demolished the same year. Originally also called Comiskey Park, it was renamed U.S. Cellular Field in 2003 and Guaranteed Rate Field in 2016.Eagles–Giants rivalry
The Eagles–Giants rivalry is a National Football League (NFL) rivalry between the Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants. The rivalry began in 1933 with the founding of the Eagles, and slowly strengthened when both teams came to relative prominence in the 1940s and 1950s. The two teams have played in the same division in the NFL every year since 1933. The ferocity of the rivalry can also be attributed to the geographic New York-Philadelphia rivalry, which is mirrored in Major League Baseball's Mets–Phillies rivalry and the National Hockey League's Flyers–Rangers rivalry. It is ranked by NFL Network as the number one rivalry of all-time and Sports Illustrated ranks it amongst the top ten NFL rivalries of all-time at number four, and according to ESPN, it is one of the fiercest and most well-known rivalries in the football community.The overall series is currently tied, 86–86–2. The Eagles and Giants have met in the playoffs four times, with each team winning twice.Eagles–Redskins rivalry
The Eagles–Redskins rivalry is a rivalry between the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins of the National Football League. The rivalry began in 1934, during the time the Redskins played in Boston. The Redskins lead in all-time series 86–78–6. The Redskins have won five NFL championships including three Super Bowls, while the Eagles have won four NFL championships including one Super Bowl. Both teams were members of the NFL's Eastern Conference prior to the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, and the NFC East division since 1970. The teams have met twice annually since 1936.
The rivalry is one of the most heated rivalries in the NFL, and has featured some memorable moments in NFL history. The rivalry is most notable for the "Body Bag Game", where the Eagles knocked out eight Redskins players in a game in 1990.
The Redskins lead in all-time series 86–78–6. The Redskins have won five NFL championships including three Super Bowls, while the Eagles have won four NFL championships including one Super Bowl. The teams have met once in the Playoffs, in which the Redskins defeated the Eagles 20–6 in the 1990 NFC Wild Card round.
The rivalry can be attributed to the close proximity of Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.. It is mirrored by the National Hockey League rivalry between the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers.Elmer Angsman
Elmer Joseph Angsman Jr. (December 11, 1925 – April 11, 2002) was an American football running back in the NFL.
He was born on the south side of Chicago in 1925, the son of Elmer and Helen Angsman. Elmer attended Mount Carmel High School and also starred for Notre Dame in college from 1943 to 1945(playing on the 1943 National Championship team 1943 college football season and the College All-Star team that defeated the world champion Cleveland Rams.), played 7 seasons in the NFL, all with the Chicago Cardinals. After graduating from Notre Dame in three years with a degree in journalism, Angsman was the youngest player ever drafted to play in the NFL at the age of 20 with the 16th overall pick of the 1946 draft. Angsman was part of Charles Bidwill’s "Dream Backfield". Although Bidwill did not live to see it, the talented corps that included Charley Trippi, Paul Christman, Pat Harder, and Angsman went on to achieve great success. In the 1947 NFL championship game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Angsman scored twice on runs of 70 yards each. The final touchdown, a run up the middle like the first against Eagle coach Greasy Neale's famed 5-2-4 defense, put the game out of reach. Angsman finished the game with 10 carries for 159 yards. His 15.9 yard per carry average is still an NFL post-season record (10 carries or more). The 1947 title was the Cardinal franchise's last championship. Don Paul, a former defensive back for the Cardinals and later the Cleveland Browns, once said "He was...A straight ahead north and south runner who would just as soon leave cleat marks on your balls as run around you."
Angsman and the Cardinals never reclaimed the glory of the 1947 championship season. In 1948, Angsman led the Cardinals in rushing, with 412 yards and 7 touchdowns, and the Cards edged the Chicago Bears for the West Conference title. They met the Eagles once again in the 1948 NFL Championship Game title game now referred to as "The Blizzard Bowl". The field was covered by snow and the entire game was played in a storm. The Cardinals running attack was greatly hampered and the Eagles star Steve Van Buren was the only player who could run effectively in the conditions. Angsman mustered only 33 yards on 10 carries. Only 5 passes were completed by both teams combined. Van Buren's 5 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter was the only scoring as the Eagles won their first championship, 7-0.
The Cardinals' visionary coach, Jimmy Conzelman, quit after the 1948 season and the Cardinals drifted into mediocrity. Angsman had his best season in 1949 with 674 yards rushing on 125 carries and 6 touchdowns. He, Pat Harder, and Charlie Trippi shared running duties and combined for 1,674 yards and 16 touchdowns that year (in comparison, Steve Van Buren set the NFL single season rushing record in 1949 with 1146 yards). However, the future of NFL success lay in dynamic passing attacks such as that possessed by the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns. Angsman's production fell off significantly in 1950 and 1951, with 363 and 380 yards, respectively, and an average under 3.5 yards per carry. By 1952, with stunning rookie halfback Ollie Matson joining the club, Angsman was relegated to a seldom-used backup role. He retired after the 1952 season at age 27. He finished with career statistics of 683 carries, 2908 yards (4.3 avg), and 27 touchdowns. He caught 41 passes for 654 yards and 5 touchdowns. Angsman was selected to the first ever Pro Bowl 1951 Pro Bowl in 1950.
After his NFL career, Angsman was a color commentator beginning in 1958 with CBS Radio CBS Radio, later ABC American Football League on ABC and finishing with NBC List of NFL on NBC announcers in 1972. Angsman called college and pro games most notably the 1968 Sugar Bowl and several Orange Bowl games. He is a member of the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame. Angsman owned various companies after commentating finding success in paper manufacturing and eventually retiring to Juno Beach, Florida. In April 2002, Elmer Angsman died of a heart attack while playing golf with lifelong friends.
He is survived by wife-Diane Angsman, son-John Angsman, grandchildren- Jim Angsman, Jeff Angsman, Jackie Angsman, Jay Angsman, Joe AngsmanJimmy Conzelman
James Gleason Dunn Conzelman (March 6, 1898 – July 31, 1970) was an American football player and coach, baseball executive, and advertising executive. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1964 and was selected in 1969 as a quarterback on the National Football League 1920s All-Decade Team.
A native of St. Louis, Conzelman played college football for the 1918 Great Lakes Navy Bluejackets team that won the 1919 Rose Bowl. In 1919, he was an All-Missouri Valley Conference quarterback for the Washington University Pikers football team. He then played ten seasons as a quarterback, halfback, placekicker, and coach in the National Football League (NFL) for the Decatur Staleys (1920), Rock Island Independents (1921–1922), Milwaukee Badgers (1922–1924), Detroit Panthers (1925–1926), and Providence Steam Roller (1927–1929). He was also a team owner in Detroit and, as player-coach, led the 1928 Providence Steam Roller team to an NFL championship.
From 1932 to 1939, Conzelman was the head football coach for the Washington University Bears football team, leading the program to Missouri Valley Conference championships in 1934, 1935, and 1939. He served as head coach of the NFL's Chicago Cardinals from 1940 to 1942 and again from 1946 to 1948. He led the Cardinals to an NFL championship in 1947 and Western Division championships in 1947 and 1948. He was also an executive with St. Louis Browns in Major League Baseball from 1943 to 1945.Kurt Warner
Kurtis Eugene Warner (born June 22, 1971) is a former American football quarterback. He played for three National Football League (NFL) teams: the St. Louis Rams, the New York Giants, and the Arizona Cardinals. He was originally signed by the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted free agent in 1994 after playing college football at Northern Iowa. Warner went on to be considered the best undrafted NFL player of all time, following a 12-year career regarded as one of the greatest stories in NFL history. Warner was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2017, and is the only person inducted into both the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the Arena Football Hall of Fame.
Warner first attained stardom while playing for the St. Louis Rams from 1998 to 2003, where he won NFL MVP awards in 1999 and 2001 as well as the Super Bowl MVP award in Super Bowl XXXIV when he and the Rams beat the Tennessee Titans. He led the 2008 Arizona Cardinals to Super Bowl XLIII (the franchise's first Super Bowl berth), and owns three of the top five highest single-game passing yardage totals in Super Bowl history. Warner is one of only two quarterbacks to win the Super Bowl in their first season as a starter, the other being Tom Brady. Warner currently holds the tenth-highest career passer rating of all-time (93.7), and the fourth-highest career completion percentage in NFL history with 65.5%.In 13 career playoff games, Warner ranks 5th all-time in completion percentage (66.5%), 10th in yards per attempt (8.55), and 10th in passer rating (102.8). He announced his retirement after the conclusion of the 2009 season.Louisiana Tech Bulldogs football
The Louisiana Tech Bulldogs represent Louisiana Tech University in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) level. After 12 seasons in the Western Athletic Conference, Louisiana Tech began competing as a member of Conference USA in 2013. Since then, the Bulldogs have been coached by Skip Holtz and have won their last 5 consecutive bowl games. Since 1968, the Bulldogs have played their home games at Joe Aillet Stadium. Since the Bulldogs first season in 1901, Louisiana Tech has compiled an all-time record of 620 wins, 462 losses, and 39 ties. In 116 football seasons, the Bulldogs have won 3 Division II national championships, won 25 conference championships, and played in 27 postseason games including 12 major college bowl games.Loyd Arms
Loyd "Pig" Arms (September 24, 1919 – June 18, 1999) was an American professional football player. He was born in Sulphur, Oklahoma, United States.Pete Pihos
Peter Louis Pihos (; October 22, 1923 – August 16, 2011) was an American football player and coach.
Pihos played college football, principally as an end and fullback, for Indiana University from 1942 to 1943 and 1945 to 1946. He was selected as a first-team All-American in 1942, 1943, and 1945. His college playing career was interrupted by service in the United States Army during World War II. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1966, the first Indiana player to be so honored.
Pihos played professional football as an end in the National Football League (NFL) for the Philadelphia Eagles from 1947 to 1955. While with the Eagles, he helped the team win back-to-back NFL championships in 1948 and 1949. He was selected six times to play in the Pro Bowl (1950–1955) and six times as a first-team All-Pro (1948, 1949, 1952–1955). During his career, he was one of the NFL's leading receivers. He was named to the NFL 1940s All-Decade Team in 1969 and inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1970.
After his playing career was over, Pihos was the head football coach for National Agricultural College (later renamed Delaware Valley University) from 1956 to 1958. He also held coaching positions with Tulane University (assistant coach, 1959–1960) and the Richmond Rebels (head coach, 1964–1965).
Chicago Cardinals 1947 NFL champions
|Division championships (7)|
|Conference championships (1)|
|League championships (2)|
|Current league affiliations|
Championship seasons in bold
|Division championships (13)|
|Conference championships (4)|
|League championships (4)|
|Current league affiliations|
Championship seasons in bold
National Football League Championship Games (1933–present)
|NFL Championship Game|
|AFL Championship Game|
|AFL-NFL World Championship Game|
1 – From 1966 to 1969, the first four Super Bowls were "World Championship" games played between two independent professional football leagues, AFL and NFL, and when the league merged in 1970 the Super Bowl became the NFL Championship Game.
2 – Dates in the list denote the season, not the calendar year in which the championship game was played. For instance, Super Bowl XLI was played in 2007, but was the championship for the 2006 season.