1961 Boston Patriots season

The 1961 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 2nd season in the American Football League The Patriots ended the season with a record of nine wins and four losses and one tie, and placed second in the AFL's Eastern Division.

1961 Boston Patriots season
Head coachLou Saban (Fired week 5, 2–3 record)
Mike Holovak (interim, 7–1–1 record)
General managerEdward McKeever
OwnerBilly Sullivan
Home fieldNickerson Field
Division place2nd AFL Eastern
Playoff finishdid not qualify
AFL All-StarsLB Tom Addison
DB Fred Bruney
WR Gino Cappelletti
DE Bob Dee
RB Larry Garron
DT Jim Lee Hunt
G Chuck Leo


Boston Patriots 1961 staff
Front Office

Head Coaches

Offensive Coaches


Defensive Coaches

Season summary

In the off-season, the team acquired quarterback Babe Parilli from the Oakland Raiders, himself a former starter for the NFL's Green Bay Packers. After starting the season 2–3, the team fired head coad Lou Saban and replaced him with Mike Holovak. The change was a positive one, as the team would finish on a four-game winning streak, including a season-finale shutout of the San Diego Chargers. Their record of 9–4–1 was good enough for 2nd place in the Eastern Division, and one game behind division leader Houston. This season was the first in which the team used their "Pat the Patriot" logo on their helmets.[1]

Draft picks

Round Player Position College
1 Tommy Mason Half back Tulane
2 Rip Hawkins Center North Carolina
3 Danny LaRose Tight End Missouri
4 Mike Zeno Guard Virginia Tech
5 Fran Tarkenton Quarterback Georgia
6 Larry Eisenhauer 1 Tackle Boston College
7 Paul Terhes Quarterback Bucknell
8 Charles Long 1 Guard Tennessee-Chattanooga
9 Roland Lakes Center Wichita
10 Richard Mueller Offensive end Kentucky
11 Mel West Center Missouri
12 Wayne Harris Center Arkansas
13 Dan Underwood Tackle McNeese State
14 James Wright Quarterback Memphis State
16 George Balthazar Tackle Tennessee A&I
17 Ray Ratkowski Halfback Notre Dame
18 Tom Rodgers Halfback Kentucky
19 Joe Bellino Halfback Navy
20 Clarence Childs Halfback Florida A&M
21 Dan Oakes Guard Virginia Tech
22 Bob Johnson Offensive end Michigan
23 Darrell DeDecker Center Illinois
24 Don Webb Halfback Iowa State
25 Robert Minihane Tackle Boston
26 Charles Granger Tackle Southern
27 Terry Huxhold Tackle Wisconsin
28 Bryant Harvard Quarterback Auburn
29 Ernie McMillan Tackle Illinois
30 George Hultz Tackle Mississippi Southern

Game-by-game results

Home games in bold.

Week Opponent Result Patriots'
Record Attendance
1 New York Titans L 20 21 0–1
2 Denver Broncos W 45 17 1–1
3 Buffalo Bills W 23 21 2–1
4 New York Titans L 30 37 2–2
5 San Diego Chargers L 27 38 2–3
6 Houston Oilers T 31 31 2–3–1
7 Buffalo Bills W 52 21 3–3–1
8 Dallas Texans W 18 17 4–3–1
9 Dallas Texans W 28 21 5–3–1
10 Houston Oilers L 15 27 5–4–1
11 Oakland Raiders W 20 17 6–4–1
12 Bye 6–4–1
13 Denver Broncos W 28 24 7–4–1
14 Oakland Raiders W 35 21 8–4–1
15 San Diego Chargers W 41 0 9–4–1


AFL Eastern Division
Houston Oilers 10 3 1 .769 4–1–1 513 242 W9
Boston Patriots 9 4 1 .692 2–3–1 413 313 W4
New York Titans 7 7 0 .500 3–3 301 390 L2
Buffalo Bills 6 8 0 .429 2–4 294 342 L1

Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.


All of the following players appeared in at least one game for the 1961 Boston Patriots. Players new to the team in 1961 are in bold

Name Position Notes
Tom Addison LB
Houston Antwine DT Rookie
Walter Beach DB/RB
Fred Bruney DB
Ron Burton HB
Gino Cappelletti WR/K/DB Uniform number 20 retired by the New England Patriots
Jim Colclough WR
Jim Crawford FB/HB
Walt Cudzik C/LB
Bob Dee DE/DT Uniform number 89 retired by the New England Patriots
Jerry DeLucca T/DT
Larry Eisenhauer DE Rookie
Larry Garron HB
Milt Graham T/DT Rookie
Ron Hall DB
Jim Hunt DT/DE Uniform number 79 retired by the New England Patriots
Harry Jacobs LB/DE
Harry Jagielski DT/T
Joe Johnson HB/E/WR
Bill Kimber E
Dick Klein T
Chuck Leo G
Paul Lindquist DT Rookie
Ray Lardani T Rookie
T/G Rookie
Billy Lott FB
Rommie Loudd LB
Leroy Moore DE
Ross O'Hanley DB
Babe Parilli QB
Willis Perkins DE/G Rookie
Ray Ratkowski HB Rookie
Frank Robotti LB Rookie
Al Romine DB/HB
Tony Sardisco G/LB
Gerard Swedes HB
Chuck Shonta DB
John Simmerson C
Bob Soltis DB
Butch Singin QB
Thomas Stephens TE/DB
Paper Towns DB
Clyde Washington DB/P
Don Webb DB Rookie
Rob Yates T/C Rookie
Tom Yewcic QB/P/HB Rookie

Notes and references

General references

  • "1961 Boston Patriots". Football @ JT-SW.com. John Troan. 2002. Retrieved April 11, 2007.. For game-by-game results
  • "1961 Boston Patriots Roster". Football @ JT-SW.com. John Troan. 2002. Archived from the original on April 25, 2007. Retrieved April 12, 2007.. For team roster
  • "New England Patriots (1960–present)". Sports E-cyclopedia. Tank Productions. 2007. Archived from the original on April 17, 2007. Retrieved April 11, 2007.. For season summary

Footnoted references

  1. ^ "AFC east helmets". The Helmet Project. 2007. Archived from the original on April 2, 2007. Retrieved April 12, 2007.
Division championships (21)
Conference championships (11)
League championships (6)
Retired numbers
Current league affiliations
Former league affiliation
Seasons (60)

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