Gino Cappelletti

Gino Cappelletti (born March 26, 1934) is a former American collegiate and professional football player. He played at the University of Minnesota and was a star in the American Football League for the Boston Patriots,[1] winning the 1964 American Football League Most Valuable Player award.[2] Cappelletti is a member of the Patriots Hall of Fame, the Patriots' All-1960s Team and the American Football League Hall of Fame. He served as the Patriots' radio color commentator until July 2012. His nicknames included "The Duke" and "Mr. Patriot".[3][4]

Gino Cappelletti
No. 20
Position:Wide receiver / Placekicker
Personal information
Born:March 26, 1934 (age 85)
Keewatin, Minnesota
Height:6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight:190 lb (86 kg)
Career information
High school:Keewatin (MN)
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR

College career

Born and raised in tiny Keewatin in northern Minnesota, Cappelletti played college football at the University of Minnesota, where he was a quarterback, backing up All-American Paul Giel.[5] Cappelletti kicked extra points, but the team did not kick field goals in those years. However, as a sophomore in 1952, Cappelletti talked the coach into letting him try a game-winning 43-yard kick against Iowa.[6][7][8]

As a senior in 1954, Cappelletti switched to T-quarterback and led Minnesota to a 7–2 record, missing the final game with an elbow injury,[9] a 27–0 loss at Wisconsin.[10] He was named to the All-Big Ten second team, but was not selected in the 1955 NFL draft.

Professional football career


Cappelletti played quarterback for the Sarnia Imperials of the ORFU in Canada during 1955. He joined Toronto Balmy Beach in 1956, but was drafted into the U.S. Army in mid-season, returning to Canada in 1958. Cappelletti signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL, but was traded to the Saskatchewan Roughriders, was later cut, and went back to the ORFU, leading the Sarnia Golden Bears (the team having changed its name in 1956) to the league championship.

Boston Patriots

Cappelletti was out of pro football in 1959, back in Minnesota. With the launch of the American Football League in 1960, he joined the Boston Patriots and was initially a kicker and defensive back.[5][11][12] He switched to offense late in that season and teamed up with quarterback Babe Parilli to form a tandem nicknamed "Grand Opera Twins", due to their Italian surnames.[13] Cappelletti won AFL MVP honors in 1964,[2] led the league in scoring five times and was a five-time AFL All-Star. He holds the professional football record for points over a six-year period (9.5), points over an 11-year period (7.5) and percentage of his team's total points over an eight-year period (34%). One of twenty AFL players active during the entirety of the league's ten-year existence, Cappelletti was also among just three players who played in every one of his team's AFL games. He played with the Patriots all eleven years in Boston, from 1960 through the 1970 NFL merger season, and retired in late August 1971 at age 37;[1][14] he was the AFL's all-time leading scorer with 1,130 points (42 TDs, 176 FGs and 342 PATs) and among the AFL's top ten all-time receivers in yards and in receptions. Cappelletti had two of the top five scoring seasons in pro football history, with 155 points in 1964 and 147 points in 1961 (14-game seasons). His Patriots team scoring record lasted until it was broken by Adam Vinatieri on December 5, 2005. To date, as of the end of the 2017 season, Cappelletti is the Patriots' 11th all-time leading receiver in receptions with 292 catches and 9th in receiving yards with 4,589 yards. He is 5th in Patriots history in receiving touchdowns with 42 and has the most field goal attempts (334) in team history.

During Cappelletti's pro career, he also returned punts and kickoffs, played defensive back and even had one pass completion for a touchdown. Cappelletti was just the second AFL player to record three interceptions (of Tom Flores) in a regular-season game, holds the professional football record for most touchdowns in Saturday games (10), scored 18 points or more in a game ten times and scored 20 or more points in a game eight times. He set the AFL single-game record by scoring 28 points in the Patriots' 42–14 rout of Houston on December 18, 1965.[15] Cappelletti is the only player in professional football history to run for a two-point conversion, throw for a two-point conversion, catch a pass, intercept a pass, return a punt and return a kickoff in the same season. He kicked six field goals (without a miss) in a 39–10 win at Denver on October 4, 1964,[3] and became one of only two AFL kickers with at least four field goals per game for three consecutive games. Cappelletti kicked the longest field goal in the AFL in consecutive seasons and led the AFL in field-goal percentage in 1965.

In 1984, Cappelletti was inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame. However, he has not been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In 2003, he was named to the Professional Football Researchers Association Hall of Very Good in the association's inaugural HOVG class.[16]


Cappelletti worked alongside Gil Santos as a color commentator for the Patriots' radio broadcasts on the New England Patriots Radio Network (in the 1988–90 period he worked alongside Dale Arnold). The Santos-Cappelletti duo lasted 28 seasons, the longest radio tandem in modern NFL history. They called 585 regular-season and postseason games together, including a league-record six Super Bowls.

Cappelletti also served as color commentator for the Boston College Eagles during the famous "Hail Flutie" game in 1984. Cappelletti can be heard supporting Dan Davis' now-famous call by yelling "He got it!, He got it!, I don't believe it!"

On July 20, 2012, Cappelletti announced his retirement from broadcasting.[17]

Personal life

Cappelletti is the father-in-law of ex-Boston College and Chicago Bears standout Tom Waddle. He is not related to running back John Cappelletti of Penn State, the Heisman Trophy winner in 1973.[18]

See also


  1. ^ a b Carnicelli, Joe (September 1, 1971). "Cappelletti retires at 37". Times-News. Hendersonville, North Carolina. UPI. p. 13.
  2. ^ a b Hand, Jack (December 17, 1964). "Gino Cappelletti named most valuable player". Evening News. Newburgh, New York. Associated Press. p. 13B.
  3. ^ a b "Cappelletti kicks six FGs". Eugene Register-Guard. Oregon. Associated Press. October 5, 1964. p. 6B.
  4. ^ Oldeman, Ryan. "Legendary New England Patriots Broadcaster Gino Cappelletti Signing Off After 32 Years". Sports Media 101. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Cappelletti Patriot hero". Nashua Telegraph. New Hampshire. Associated Press. October 30, 1961. p. 13.
  6. ^ "Minnesota comeback beats fumbling Hawkeyes, 17-7". Pittsburgh Press. United Press. November 2, 1952. p. 42.
  7. ^ "Gopher rally beats Iowa". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. November 2, 1952. p. B3.
  8. ^ "THE DUKE OF BOSTON," by Bob Braunwart & Bob Carroll, THE COFFIN CORNER: Vol. 3, No. 8 (1981) Archived December 18, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Ingrassia, Tony (November 20, 1954). "Badgers favored over Minnesota". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 2, part 2.
  10. ^ Ingrassia, Tony (November 21, 1954). "Badgers rout Gophers, 27–0; set interception record". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1C.
  11. ^ "Patriots find unknown ace in Cappelletti". Eugene Register-Guard. Oregon. Associated Press. November 2, 1961. p. 2D.
  12. ^ "Gino Cappelletti took golf tip from Palmer to help kicking". Milwaukee Journal. UPI. February 22, 1965. p. 2, Final.
  13. ^ "Parilli gains loop award". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Washington. Associated Press. November 19, 1964. p. 40.
  14. ^ "Gino Cappeppetti, last of original Patriots, retires; Forrest Gregg joins Dallas". Gettysburg Times. Pennsylvania. Associated Press. September 1, 1971. p. 19.
  15. ^ "Cappelletti leads Patriot triumph". Eugene Register-Guard. Oregon. Associated Press. December 19, 1965. p. 2B.
  16. ^ "Hall of Very Good". Retrieved May 24, 2016.
  17. ^ Gino Cappelletti retires from broadcasting
  18. ^ "Cappelletti '73 Heisman Winner". Spartanburg Herald. South Carolina. Associated Press. December 5, 1973. p. B2.

External links

Preceded by
Lance Alworth, Clem Daniels, Tobin Rote
American Football League MVP
Succeeded by
Jack Kemp, Paul Lowe
Preceded by
Steve Hausmann
Boston College Eagles football color commentator
Succeeded by
Upton Bell
Preceded by
Upton Bell
Boston College Eagles football color commentator
Succeeded by
Pete Cronan
1960 Boston Patriots season

The 1960 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 1st season in the American Football League The Patriots ended the season with a record of five wins and nine losses, under their head coach Lou Saban, and thus were last place in the AFL's Eastern Division. The team played their home games at Boston University's Nickerson Field (formerly the site of the Boston Braves' home ballpark Braves Field).

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.

1963 American Football League Championship Game

The 1963 American Football League Championship Game was the fourth AFL title game. At the end of the regular season, the San Diego Chargers (11–3) won the Western Division for the third time in the four-year existence of the AFL.The Eastern Division Boston Patriots and Buffalo Bills had identical 7–6–1 records, which required a tiebreaker playoff game on December 28 in Buffalo.

1963 Boston Patriots season

The 1963 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 4th season in the American Football League.

In their first season at Fenway Park, switching from Nickerson Field, the Patriots hovered around the .500 mark all season, and were in position to win the Eastern Division title outright with a victory on their final game. The 35–3 road loss to the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs allowed the Buffalo Bills catch up and both finished at 7–6–1, which required a divisional playoff game, the AFL's first. Both teams had a bye the following week, postponed from the Sunday after the assassination of President Kennedy; the tiebreaker playoff was scheduled for Saturday, December 28, at Buffalo's War Memorial Stadium. The teams split their two games during the regular season, with the home team winning, and the host Bills were slight favorites.The visiting Patriots won the playoff game 26–8 on a snowy field, with quarterback Babe Parilli throwing two touchdown passes to fullback Larry Garron, and three field goals were added by end Gino Cappelletti. With the win, Boston became Eastern Division champions, while the Western champion San Diego Chargers (11–3) were idle. The AFL championship game was played the next week in southern California on January 5, where San Diego routed the Patriots 51–10 at Balboa Stadium.

1964 Boston Patriots season

The 1964 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 5th season in the American Football League The Patriots ended the season with a record of ten wins, three losses, and one tie, and finished second in the AFL's Eastern Division.

1966 Boston Patriots season

The 1966 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 7th season in the American Football League The Patriots ended the season with a record of eight wins and four losses and two ties, and finished second in the AFL's Eastern Division. This would be the last winning season the Patriots posted as an AFL team; they would not have another such season until 1976, by which time the team was in the NFL as the New England Patriots.

1968 Boston Patriots season

The 1968 Boston Patriots season was the franchise's 9th season in the American Football League. The Patriots ended the season with a record of four wins and ten losses, and finished fourth in the AFL's Eastern Division. The Patriots played their final season of home games at Fenway Park before moving to Alumni Stadium on the campus of Boston College for the following season.

1968 Cincinnati Bengals season

The 1968 Cincinnati Bengals season was the team's first year in professional football.

Paul Brown, who left the Cleveland Browns following the 1962 season with National Football League (NFL) record of 115–49–6, seven conference titles, and three NFL championships, had the urge to get back into football. His son Mike Brown did a study on pro football expansion and recommended Cincinnati as a potential site. In 1965, Brown met with Ohio Governor James Rhodes and the two agreed the state could accommodate a second pro football team.

1966 – Fearful the Cincinnati Reds baseball team would leave town and feeling pressure from local businessmen pushing for a pro football franchise, Cincinnati's city council approved the construction of Riverfront Stadium.

1967 – Brown's group was awarded an American Football League (AFL) expansion franchise. Brown named the team the Bengals, the name of Cincinnati's pro teams in the old AFL of the late 1930s. The Bengals acquired their first player late in the year when they traded two draft picks to Miami for quarterback John Stofa.

1968 – The Bengals were awarded 40 veteran players in the allocation draft. In the college draft, they selected University of Tennessee center Bob Johnson as their first pick. The Bengals lost their first preseason game 38–14 to the Kansas City Chiefs before 21,682 fans at the University of Cincinnati's Nippert Stadium. The Bengals upset the Denver Broncos 24–10 and the Buffalo Bills 34–23 in their first two regular-season home games. Halfback Paul Robinson led the AFL in rushing with 1,023 yards and was named Rookie of the Year.

Bob Fouracre

Robert E. "Bob" Fouracre (born November 22, 1937) is an American sportscaster who currently calls football and basketball for the College of the Holy Cross. He is a 1956 graduate of Northboro High School, a 1958 graduate of the Cushing Academy and a 1962 graduate of the Cambridge School of Broadcasting.

Fouracre has called Holy Cross football since 1970 and Holy Cross Crusaders men's basketball since 1989. From 1970-1981, Fouracre worked at WSMW-TV where he called Boston Celtics games (1971–73), hosted "Bay State Bowling" (1970–81), and called college basketball and football games. Fouracre began his career at WARE, calling high school sports from 1962-1969 and called New England Patriots preseason games in 1971.

Fouracre called games for the WBL's Worcester Counts in 1989, the CBA's Bay State Bombardiers on NESN and WORC (AM) (1983–86), and hosted "Big Shot Bowling" on NESN (1985–91). He is, to date, the only person to call play-by-play in the National Basketball Association (NBA), the Continental Basketball Association (CBA) and the World Basketball League (WBL). His former broadcasting partners include Bob Cousy, Togo Palazzi, Upton Bell, Gino Cappelletti, Gordie Lockbaum, Gary Tanguay and Greg Dickerson. For one season he worked on New England Patriots preseason.

Fouracre was suspended as host of the Holy Cross football and basketball shows on WGMC TV-3 in September 1998 after police charged him with assaulting a reporter and cameraman from the cable television station. The charges were dismissed by agreement of the parties four months later.

Bob Soltis

Bob Soltis (April 1, 1936 – June 26, 2009) was an American football defensive back. He played for the Boston Patriots from 1960 to 1961.He died on June 26, 2009, in Chanhassen, Minnesota at age 73.


Cappelletti may be:

A kind of pasta similar to tortellini, a stuffed pasta. Unlike tortellini, that use a meat-based filling, cappelletti are usually stuffed with Parmigiano-Reggiano, Grana Padano or Robiola. They are typical for Emilia-Romagna, Italy, (Ravenna, Forlì, Cesena, Rimini, Ferrara, Modena, Reggio Emilia).

An Italian surname. Notable people with the surname include:Ángel Cappelletti, Argentine professor

Daniel Cappelletti, Italian footballer

Felice Cappelletti, Italian painter

Gino Cappelletti, American rule football player

Joe Cappelletti, voice actor

John Cappelletti, American rule football player

Mauro Cappelletti

Mike Cappelletti (1942–2013), American bridge player and poker authorityAn alternative name, in 15th to 18th century Venice, for the Albanian stradiotti mercenaries, on account of their red hats.

Gil Santos

Gilbert A. Santos (April 19, 1938 – April 19, 2018) was an American radio play-by-play announcer for the New England Patriots of the National Football League, and morning sports reporter for WBZ radio in Boston. He was an inductee of the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame.He retired from WBZ radio in January 2009, and was inducted into the WBZ Radio Hall of Fame on July 9, 2009. The Patriots 2012 season was his final season of radio play-by-play.

Harry Jacobs (American football)

Harry Edwards Jacobs (born February 4, 1937) is a former American college and professional football player. A linebacker, he played college football for Bradley University and in the American Football League for the Boston Patriots from 1960 through 1962, and for the Buffalo Bills from 1963 through 1969.

Jack Atchason

John Dean "Jack" Atchason (born November 16, 1936) is a former American football end. He played college football at Western Illinois University, and played professionally in the American Football League in 1960, for the Boston Patriots and the Houston Oilers.

Mike Long (American football)

Michael Stanford Long (born October 29, 1938) is a former American football player who played with the Boston Patriots. He played college football at Brandeis University.

Pete Brock (American football)

Peter Anthony Brock (born July 14, 1954, Portland, Oregon) was a center and guard who played twelve professional seasons with the National Football League's New England Patriots. Brock attended the University of Colorado. His younger brother Stan played with the Colorado Buffaloes and in the NFL. Pete played against Stan in the Patriots' 38-27 win over the Saints at the Superdome on December 21, 1980.He played left tackle, long snapper, tight end and wing back during the same series of downs in the Patriots' 27-7 victory over the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on 10-14-79. He was awarded the game ball as his tore his cartilage in his knee early in the game but played the entire game in the Patriots 17-6 win over the Miami Dolphins at Sullivan Stadium on 11-13-83. Pete was the starting center 78 times, starting left guard 3 times, starting left tackle 6 times and the starting right guard once in the 154 regular season games that he played for the New England Patriots. He wore #58.He recovered a fumble by Doug Beaudoin in the Patriots' 48-17 rout of the Oakland Raiders at Schaefer Stadium on 10-03-76. Pete recovered a fumble by Horace Ivory in the Patriots' 23-14 victory over the Denver Broncos at Schaefer on 09-29-80. He pounced on a fumble by Steve Grogan in their 29-28 loss to the Baltimore Colts at Schaefer on 09-06-81. Pete fell on a fumble by Matt Cavanaugh in their 10-7 loss to the Browns at Cleveland Stadium on 11-21-82. Pete recovered a fumble by Steve Grogan in their 31-24 loss to the New York Jets at Sullivan Stadium on 10-12-86.Brock Brock won the Ed Block Courage Award in 1985. He currently works as the President of the New England Patriots Alumni and announces college football games. He has his own segment called "Brock's Breakdown" as part of the pre-game show on 98.5 FM, the Sports Hub in Boston; in 2001 he also replaced Gino Cappelletti as color analyst on the Patriots' radio network for the first eight games of that season because of illness to Cappelletti.

Walt Cudzik

Walter Jacob Cudzik (February 21, 1932 – December 11, 2005) was an American football center in the National Football League for the Washington Redskins. He also played in the American Football League for the Boston Patriots and the Buffalo Bills.

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