Super Bowl IV, the fourth and final AFL-NFL World Championship Game in professional American football, was played on January 11, 1970, at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans, Louisiana. The American Football League (AFL) champion Kansas City Chiefs defeated the National Football League (NFL) champion Minnesota Vikings by the score of 23–7. This victory by the AFL squared the Super Bowl series with the NFL at two games apiece. The two leagues merged into one after the game.
Despite the AFL's New York Jets winning the previous season's Super Bowl, many sports writers and fans thought it was a fluke and continued to believe that the NFL was still superior to the AFL, and thus fully expected the Vikings to defeat the Chiefs; the Vikings entered the Super Bowl as 12.5 to 13-point favorites. Minnesota posted a 12–2 record during the 1969 NFL season before defeating the Cleveland Browns, 27–7, in the 1969 NFL Championship Game. The Chiefs, who previously appeared in the first Super Bowl, finished the 1969 AFL season at 11–3, and defeated the Oakland Raiders, 17–7, in the 1969 AFL Championship Game.
Under wet conditions, the Chiefs defense dominated Super Bowl IV by limiting the Minnesota offense to only 67 rushing yards, forcing three interceptions, and recovering two fumbles. Kansas City's Len Dawson became the fourth consecutive winning quarterback to be named Super Bowl MVP. He completed 12 of 17 passes for 142 yards and one touchdown, with one interception. Dawson also recorded three rushing attempts for 11 yards.
|Super Bowl IV|
|Date||January 11, 1970|
|Stadium||Tulane Stadium, New Orleans, Louisiana|
|MVP||Len Dawson, quarterback|
|Favorite||Vikings by 13|
|Current/Future Hall of Famers|
|Vikings: Jim Finks (general manager), Bud Grant (coach), Carl Eller, Paul Krause, Alan Page, Mick Tingelhoff, Ron Yary|
Chiefs: Lamar Hunt (owner), Hank Stram (coach), Bobby Bell, Buck Buchanan, Curley Culp, Len Dawson, Willie Lanier, Johnny Robinson, Jan Stenerud, Emmitt Thomas
|National anthem||Doc Severinsen with Pat O'Brien|
|Coin toss||John McDonough|
|Halftime show||re-enactment of the Battle of New Orleans|
|TV in the United States|
|Announcers||Jack Buck and Pat Summerall|
|Nielsen ratings||39.4 |
(est. 44.3 million viewers)
|Cost of 30-second commercial||$78,000|
The game was awarded to New Orleans on March 19, 1969 at the owners meetings held in Palm Springs, California. 
The Minnesota Vikings, led by head coach Bud Grant, entered the game with an NFL best 12–2 regular season record, leading the older league in total points scored (379) and fewest points allowed (133). They had scored 50 or greater points in three different games. They lost their first and last games of the season, but in between had 12 straight victories, the longest single-season winning streak in 35 years. Their defense, considered the most intimidating in the NFL, was anchored by a defensive line nicknamed the "Purple People Eaters", consisting of defensive tackles Gary Larsen and Alan Page, and defensive ends Carl Eller and Jim Marshall. The secondary was led by defensive backs Bobby Bryant (8 interceptions, 97 return yards), Earsell Mackbee (6 interceptions, 100 return yards), and Paul Krause (5 interceptions, 82 return yards, 1 touchdown).
On offense, quarterback Joe Kapp was known for his superb leadership and his running ability, both throwing on the run and running for extra yards. And when Kapp did take off and run, instead of sliding when he was about to be tackled like most quarterbacks, he lowered his shoulder and went right at the tackler. This style of play earned him the nickname "Indestructible". In the NFL Championship Game against the Cleveland Browns, he collided with linebacker Jim Houston while running for a first down, and Houston had to be helped off the field after the play ended. Also, Kapp was known for being an extremely unselfish leader: when he was voted the Vikings Most Valuable Player, he turned the award down and said that every player on the team was equally valuable: "There is no one most valuable Viking. There are 40 most valuable Vikings."
Running back Dave Osborn was the team's top rusher with 643 yards and seven touchdowns. He also caught 22 passes for 236 yards and another touchdown. In the passing game, Pro Bowl wide receiver Gene Washington averaged 21.1 yards per catch by recording 821 yards and nine touchdowns from 39 receptions. Wide receiver John Henderson caught 34 passes for 553 yards and 5 touchdowns. The Vikings' offensive line was anchored by Pro Bowlers Grady Alderman and Mick Tingelhoff.
By winning the 1969 NFL Championship, the Vikings became the last possessors of the Ed Thorp Memorial Trophy.
Meanwhile, it seemed that the Chiefs, led by head coach Hank Stram, and especially quarterback Len Dawson, were jinxed throughout the year. In the second game of the regular season, Dawson suffered a knee injury that kept him from playing the next six games. However, back-up quarterback Mike Livingston of Southern Methodist University fame engineered five wins of the next six starts, with Dawson coming off the bench in the second half of the sixth to clinch the win. The Chiefs managed to finish in second place behind the Oakland Raiders in the AFL's Western Division, but only after suffering a tough 10–6 loss to Oakland in the final game of the regular season. After that game, many sports writers and fans heavily criticized the team and Dawson for the poor play calling (Dawson called between 80 and 90 percent of the plays during the season).
The Chiefs still managed to clinch a playoff spot. Wanting to set itself up more like the NFL right before the merger, the AFL expanded the playoffs for the 1969 season, by having the second place teams from each division face the first place teams from the other division (Western Champion vs. Eastern Runner-Up, and vice versa). As a result of the new playoff format, many critics thought the Chiefs entered the playoffs through a "back-door" as the runner up in the Western division. However, Dawson silenced the critics and led Kansas City to a strong finish in the playoffs, defeating the defending champion Jets in New York, 13–6 in the Divisional Playoffs, and defeating the Raiders (who had beaten them 41-6 in the previous year's postseason) 17–7 in the AFL Championship Game, thus essentially making the Chiefs the first wild card team to play in the Super Bowl. (Dawson says he thinks both the Jets and the Raiders could have beaten the Vikings.)
Still, many people felt that Dawson's level of play in the AFL was not comparable to the NFL. Dawson himself had spent five seasons in the NFL as a backup before going to the AFL and becoming one of its top quarterbacks. "The AFL saved my career," said Dawson. In his 8 AFL seasons, he had thrown more touchdown passes (182) than any other professional football quarterback during that time. But because many still viewed the AFL as being inferior to the NFL, his records were not considered significant. Dawson's first chance to prove himself against an NFL team ended in failure, with his Chiefs losing 35–10 in Super Bowl I, reinforcing the notion that his success was only due to playing in the "inferior league".
The Chiefs defensive tackles Buck Buchanan (left) and Curley Culp (right) were integral parts of the team's remarkable defensive line.
Offensively, the Chiefs employed innovative formations and strategies designed by Stram to disrupt the timing and positioning of the defense. Besides Dawson, the Chiefs main offensive weapon was running back Mike Garrett (1965 Heisman Trophy winner), who rushed for 732 yards and 6 touchdowns. He also recorded 43 receptions for 432 yards and another 2 touchdowns. Running back Robert Holmes had 612 rushing yards, 266 receiving yards, and 5 touchdowns. Running back Warren McVea rushed for 500 yards and 7 touchdowns, while adding another 318 yards returning kickoffs. In the passing game, wide receiver Otis Taylor caught 41 passes for 696 yards and 7 touchdowns. The offensive line was anchored by AFL All-Stars Ed Budde and Jim Tyrer. According to Len Dawson, placekicker Jan Stenerud and punter Jerrel Wilson were the best kickers in football.
The Chiefs defense led the AFL in fewest points allowed (177). Like the Vikings, the Chiefs also had an outstanding defensive line, which was led by defensive tackles Buck Buchanan and Curley Culp, and defensive ends Jerry Mays and Aaron Brown. The Chiefs also had AFL All-Star linebacker Willie Lanier, who recorded 4 interceptions and 1 fumble recovery during the season. The Kansas City secondary was led by defensive backs Emmitt Thomas (9 interceptions for 146 return yards and a touchdown), Jim Kearney (5 interceptions for 154 return yards and a touchdown) and Johnny Robinson (8 interceptions for 158 return yards).
Kansas City's defense had shown their talent in the AFL title game when they defeated the Raiders. Raiders quarterback Daryle Lamonica had completed 13 of 17 passes for 276 yards and a record setting 6 touchdowns in a 56–7 divisional rout of the Houston Oilers in their previous game, and had shredded the Chiefs with 347 yards and 5 touchdowns in their 41–6 win in the previous season's playoffs. But in the 1969 AFL Championship Game, the Chiefs defense held him to just 15 of 39 completions and intercepted him 3 times in the fourth quarter.
Kansas City advanced to the Super Bowl with wins over the two previous AFL champions. First they defeated the New York Jets in a defensive struggle, 13-6, with Dawson's 61-yard completion to Taylor setting up the game winning score on his 19-yard touchdown pass to Gloster Richardson. Kansas City held New York to just 234 yards and forced 4 turnovers.
The Chiefs then faced the Raiders, who took a 7-0 lead over them in the first quarter. However, this would be their only score of the game. Meanwhile, Dawson's 41-yard completion to Frank Pitts in the second quarter set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Wendell Hayes. Then in the third quarter, Emmitt Thomas' clutch interception in the end zone and Dawson's long completion to Taylor sparked a 95-yard drive that ended with a touchdown run by Robert Holmes. Kansas City went into the fourth quarter with a 14-7 lead, and held on for the win by forcing four turnovers (3 interceptions and a turnover on downs) in the final period.
Meanwhile, the Vikings recorded their first postseason win in franchise history by defeating the Los Angeles Rams, 23-20. Though the Rams held the lead for most of the time in regulation, Kapp led a touchdown drive to give the team a 21-20 4th quarter lead. Eller made a key play to preserve the lead, sacking Rams quarterback Roman Gabriel in the end zone for a safety and Alan Page intercepted a pass with 30 seconds left on the clock.
Then Minnesota quickly demolished the Cleveland Browns in the NFL championship game, jumping to a 24-0 halftime lead and going on to win 27-7. The Vikings offense gained 381 yards without turning the ball over, with Kapp passing for 169 yards and a touchdown, while Osborn rushed for 108 yards and Washington gained 125 yards on just 3 receptions.
Many sports writers and fans fully expected that the Vikings would easily defeat the Chiefs. Although the AFL's New York Jets won Super Bowl III at the end of the previous season, many were convinced that it was a fluke. They continued to believe that all of the NFL teams were far and away superior to all of the AFL teams. And regardless of the differences among the leagues, the Vikings simply appeared to be a superior team. Minnesota had the NFL's best record and outscored their opponents by 246 points, while Kansas City had not even won their own division.
Super Bowl IV provided another chance to show that Dawson belonged at the same level with all of the great NFL quarterbacks. But five days before the Super Bowl, news leaked that his name had been linked to a Detroit federal gambling investigation. Although Dawson was eventually cleared of any charges, the controversy added to the pressure he was already under while preparing for the game, causing him to lose sleep and concentration. "It was, beyond a doubt, the toughest week of my life," said Dawson.
Bud Grant became the first Super Bowl coach not to wear a tie. His counterpart, Hank Stram, wore a three-piece suit, with a red vest and a blazer with the Chiefs' helmet logo emblazoned on the breast pocket.
The attendance mark of 80,562 is the highest for the first four pre-merger Super Bowl games played.
This was the first Super Bowl to feature a celebrity for halftime entertainment.
Super Bowl IV was broadcast in the United States by CBS with play-by-play announcer Jack Buck and color commentator Pat Summerall, with Frank Gifford and Jack Whitaker reporting from the winning and losing locker rooms, respectively. While the game was sold out at Tulane Stadium, the NFL's unconditional blackout rules in place then prohibited the live telecast from being shown in the New Orleans area.
CBS erased the videotape a few days after the game; the same thing they did with Super Bowls I and II, which they broadcast. Videotape was expensive then and networks did not believe old games were worth saving. The only reason this game exists is because the CBC and the French version on Radio-Canada in Canada and in Québec carried the broadcast and because the Vikings were located so close to Canada and had a lot of Canadian and Québec fans (and Bud Grant was a legendary player and coach in the CFL), the CBC decided to save it for their archives. As previously mentioned, as videotape was too expensive in those days to save, they transferred the footage to black & white film (kinescope). This therefore, enabled them to reuse the videotape.
The night before the game, Ed Sabol of NFL Films met with Hank Stram and convinced Stram to wear a hidden microphone during the game so his comments could be recorded for the NFL Films Super Bowl IV film. They agreed the microphone would be kept secret. This would be the first time that a head coach had worn a microphone during a Super Bowl. This has led to one of the best-known and most popular of the NFL Films Super Bowl films due to the constant chatter and wisecracking of Stram. Ed Sabol had his number one sound man, Jack Newman – who also wired Vince Lombardi in a previous playoff game – place the microphone on Stram. Newman, a multiple Emmy award-winning sound man and cameraman, shot Stram for the entire game as well as monitored the sound to make sure it continued to work. The success and popularity of this first Super Bowl wiring of a winning head coach led to 24 years of Newman continuing to wire players and coaches for NFL Films.
Some excerpts of Stram include:
Chiefs head coach Hank Stram, who was also the team's offensive coordinator, devised an effective game plan against the Vikings. He knew Minnesota's secondary was able to play very far off receivers because Viking defensive ends Carl Eller and Jim Marshall knocked down short passes or put pressure on the quarterback. Stram decided to double-team Marshall and Eller; most of quarterback Len Dawson's completions would be short passes, and neither Marshall nor Eller knocked down any passes. Stram also concluded that the Vikings' aggressiveness on defense also made them susceptible to trap plays; Mike Garrett's rushing touchdown would come on a trap play. The Vikings' inside running game depended on center Mick Tingelhoff blocking linebackers. Stram put 285-pound Buck Buchanan or 295-pound Curley Culp in front of Tingelhoff, who weighed only 235 pounds. To Minnesota's credit, the NFL used the so-called light "greyhound" centers while the AFL used big centers. It was a mismatch that disrupted the Vikings' running game. Wrote Dawson, "It was obvious that their offense had never seen a defense like ours." Minnesota would rush for only two first downs.
The Vikings began the game by receiving the opening kickoff and marching from their own 20-yard line to the Kansas City 39-yard line with quarterback Joe Kapp completing his first two passes for 36 yards. Kapp's next pass was also a completion but running back Bill Brown was slowed by linebacker Bobby Bell, then brought down by left defensive end Jerry Mays for a yard loss to make it third down, on which Kapp failed to connect with tight end John Beasley. Minnesota rushed for only 6 yards on the drive and was forced to punt. The Chiefs then drove 42 yards in eight plays. Included was a 20-yard reception by wide receiver Frank Pitts after Vikings defensive back Ed Sharockman gambled trying to make an interception. Kansas City then scored on placekicker Jan Stenerud's Super Bowl record 48-yard field goal. This record would stand for 24 years until broken by Steve Christie in Super Bowl XXVIII. (According to Dawson, the Vikings were shocked that the Chiefs would attempt a 48-yard field goal. Stenerud was among the first soccer-style placekickers in professional football. The others included brothers Charlie and Pete Gogolak. The soccer-style placekickers used the instep of the foot while the conventional professional football placekickers kicked straight on with their toes. "Stenerud was a major factor," Dawson said.) Minnesota then managed to reach midfield on its next drive, but was forced to punt again.
On the first play of their ensuing drive, Dawson threw a 20-yard completion to Pitts, followed by a 9-yard pass to wide receiver Otis Taylor.
Four plays later, on the first play of the second quarter, a pass interference penalty on Sharockman nullified Dawson's third down incompletion and gave Kansas City a first down at the Minnesota 31-yard line. However, on third down and 4 at the 25-yard line, Vikings cornerback Earsell Mackbee broke up a deep pass intended for Taylor. Stenerud then kicked another field goal to increase the Chiefs' lead to 6–0.
On the second play of their next drive, Vikings wide receiver John Henderson fumbled the ball after catching a 16-yard reception, and Chiefs defensive back Johnny Robinson recovered the ball at the Minnesota 46-yard line. But the Vikings made key defensive plays. First defensive tackle Alan Page tackled running back Garrett for a 1-yard loss, and then safety Paul Krause intercepted Dawson's pass at the 7-yard line on the next play.
However, the Vikings also could not take advantage of the turnover. Kapp's two incompletions and a delay of game penalty forced Minnesota to punt from its own 5-yard line. The Chiefs then took over at the Viking 44-yard line after punter Bob Lee's kick traveled only 39 yards. A 19-yard run by Pitts on an end around play fooled the overaggressive, overpursuing Viking defense to set up another field goal attempt by Stenerud, which was good to increase Kansas City's lead to 9–0.
On the ensuing kickoff, Vikings returner Charlie West fumbled the football, and Kansas City's Remi Prudhomme recovered it at the Minnesota 19-yard line. ("That was a key, key play," said Dawson.) Defensive end Jim Marshall sacked Dawson for an 8-yard loss on the first play of the drive; however, a 13-yard run on a draw play by running back Wendell Hayes and a 10-yard reception by Taylor gave the Chiefs a first down at the Vikings' 4. Three plays later, Garrett's five-yard touchdown run on a trap draw play, aided by pulling right guard Mo Moorman's block on Page that cleared a huge hole, gave Kansas City a 16–0 lead. This play is forever known as the 65 Toss Power Trap.
West returned the ensuing kickoff 27 yards to the 32-yard line. On the first play of the drive, Kapp completed a 27-yard pass to Henderson to advance the ball to the Kansas City 41-yard line. However, the next three plays, Kapp threw two incompletions and was sacked by Chief defensive tackle Buck Buchanan for an eight-yard loss. On fourth down, kicker Fred Cox's 56-yard field goal attempt fell way short of the goal posts. For the first half, Minnesota rushed for only 24 yards and failed to convert any of five third downs.
In the third quarter, the Vikings managed to build momentum. After forcing the Chiefs to punt on their opening possession, Kapp completed four consecutive passes for 47 yards and rushed for seven yards. Minnesota also made its first third down conversion as it drove 69 yards in 10 plays to score on fullback Dave Osborn's four-yard rushing touchdown, reducing the lead to 16–7. However, Kansas City responded on its next possession with a six-play, 82-yard drive. Pitts picked up a key first down with a 7-yard left-to-right run on a reverse play. Then after a 15-yard personal foul penalty against the Vikings, Dawson hit Taylor with a short pass. Taylor caught the ball at the Minnesota 41-yard line, broke Earsell Mackbee's tackle, raced down the sideline, broke through Vikings' safety Karl Kassulke's tackle and scored the clinching touchdown on a 46-yard play.
The Vikings were demoralized after the game-breaking touchdown and the Chiefs' defense would continue to shut them down in the fourth quarter, forcing three interceptions on three Minnesota possessions to clinch the 23–7 victory. The defeat was total for the Vikings, as even their "Indestructible" quarterback Joe Kapp had to be helped off the field in the fourth quarter after being sacked by Chiefs defensive lineman Aaron Brown. Kapp was replaced by Gary Cuozzo. Fittingly, the Vikings' final play was an interception Cuozzo threw to cornerback Emmitt Thomas.
Kansas City running back and future University of Southern California Athletic Director Mike Garrett, the 1965 Heisman Trophy recipient, was the top rusher of the game, recording 11 carries for 39 yards and a touchdown. He also caught two passes for 25 yards and returned a kickoff for 18 yards. Taylor was the Chiefs' leading receiver with six catches for 81 yards and a touchdown. Kapp finished the game with 16 of 25 completions for 183 yards, with two costly interceptions. Henderson was the top receiver of the game with seven catches for 111 yards. The Chiefs defense completely shut down Minnesota's vaunted rushing attack. In the NFL championship game, Osborn had rushed for 108 yards while Kapp rushed for 57. In Super Bowl IV, however, the two rushed for a combined total of 24 yards. In addition, Kansas City's secondary held Minnesota All Pro receiver Gene Washington to one reception for 9 yards.
Referring to the Vikings' three interceptions, three fumbles, and six penalties, Vikings safety Karl Kassulke said, "We made more mental mistakes in one game than we did in one season." Kapp would never play again for the Vikings, as he would play out the option of his contract and sign with the Boston Patriots for the 1970 season.
Kansas City is, as of 2017, the only team in the Super Bowl era to win the title without allowing as much as 10 points in any postseason game.
Sources:The NFL's Official Encyclopedic History of Professional Football, (1973), p. 144, Macmillan Publishing Co. New York, NY, LCCN 73-3862, NFL.com Super Bowl IV, USA Today Super Bowl IV Play by Play, Super Bowl IV Play Finder KC, Super Bowl IV Play Finder Min
|Minnesota Vikings||Kansas City Chiefs|
|First downs rushing||2||8|
|First downs passing||10||7|
|First downs penalty||1||3|
|Third down efficiency||3/9||7/15|
|Fourth down efficiency||0/0||0/0|
|Net yards rushing||67||151|
|Yards per rush||3.5||3.6|
|Passing – Completions/attempts||17/28||12/17|
|Times sacked-total yards||3–27||3–20|
|Net yards passing||172||122|
|Total net yards||239||273|
|Punt returns-total yards||2–1||1–0|
|Kickoff returns-total yards||4–79||2–36|
|Interceptions-total return yards||1–0||3–24|
|Time of possession||25:27||34:33|
1Completions/attempts 2Carries 3Long gain 4Receptions 5Times targeted
The following records were set or tied in Super Bowl IV, according to the official NFL.com boxscore and the ProFootball reference.com game summary. Some records have to meet NFL minimum number of attempts to be recognized. The minimums are shown (in parenthesis).
|Player Records Established in IV |
|Highest passing completion
percentage, career, (40 attempts)
|63.6% (28-44)||Len Dawson|
|Most receptions, career||10||Otis Taylor|
|Longest kickoff return||33 yds||Clint Jones(Min)|
|Most punts, career||11||Jerrel Wilson(KC)|
|Highest punting average, game (4 punts)||48.5 yds||Jerrel Wilson (4-194)|
|Highest punting average, career (10 punts)||46.5 yards||Jerrel Wilson (11-511)|
|Longest field goal||48 yds||Jan Stenerud|
|Most fumbles, game||1||Joe Kapp|
|Most fumbles, career||1|
|Most fumbles recovered, game||1||Johnny Robinson(KC) |
|Most fumbles recovered, career||1|
|Most 40-plus yard field goals, game||1||Jan Stenerud|
|Team Records Set |
|Super Bowl win with
no home playoff games
|Largest halftime margin||16 pts||Chiefs|
|Fewest rushing yards (net)||67||Vikings|
|Fewest passing attempts||17||Chiefs|
|Fewest passes completed||12|
|Fewest yards passing (net)||122 yds|
|Fewest first downs||13||Vikings|
|Fewest first downs rushing||2|
|Most first downs, penalty||3||Chiefs|
|Highest average, game (4 punts)||48.5 yds||Chiefs|
|Most penalties, game||6||Vikings|
|Most yards penalized, game||67 yds|
|Team Records Tied|
|Most Super Bowl appearances||2||Chiefs|
|Most points scored, first half||16 pts|
|Most points, second quarter||13 pts|
|Longest touchdown scoring drive||82 yds|
|Fewest first downs passing||7|
|Fewest (net) yards allowed||239 yds|
|Fewest punt returns, game||1|
|Fewest punt return yards gained||0 yds|
|Most Super Bowl losses||1||Vikings|
|Fewest points, game||7 pts|
|Fewest points, first half||0 pts|
|Fewest touchdowns, game||1|
|Fewest net yards gained,
rushing and passing
|Fewest rushing attempts||19|
|Most passes completed||17|
|Fewest passing touchdowns||0|
|Most fumbles, game||3|
|Most fumbles lost, game||2|
|Most turnovers, game||5|
|Fewest punts, game||3|
|Records, both team totals |
|Fewest points scored, second half||14 pts||7||7|
|Net yards, Both Teams|
|Fewest net yards,
rushing and passing
|Passing, Both Teams|
|Fewest passing attempts||45||17||28|
|First Downs, Both Teams|
|Fewest first downs||32||19||13|
|Fewest first downs rushing||11||9||2|
|Most first downs, penalty||4||3||1|
|Kickoff returns, Both Teams|
|Fewest yards gained||115 yds||36||79|
|Punt returns, Both Teams|
|Fewest punt returns, game||3||1||2|
|Fewest yards gained, game||18 yds||0||18|
|Penalties, Both Teams|
|Most penalties, game||10||4||6|
|Most yards penalized||114 yds||47||67|
|Records Tied, Both Teams|
|Most points, third quarter||14 pts||7||7|
|Most times intercepted||4||1||3|
|Fewest first downs, passing||17||7||10|
|Most interceptions by||4||3||1|
|Most fumbles lost||2||0||2|
|Fewest punts, game||7||4||3|
|Gene Washington||WR||Frank Pitts|
|Grady Alderman||LT||Jim Tyrer|
|Jim Vellone||LG||Ed Budde|
|Mick Tingelhoff‡||C||E. J. Holub|
|Milt Sunde||RG||Mo Moorman|
|Ron Yary‡||RT||Dave Hill|
|John Beasley||TE||Fred Arbanas|
|John Henderson||WR||Otis Taylor|
|Joe Kapp||QB||Len Dawson‡|
|Dave Osborn||RB||Mike Garrett|
|Bill Brown||RB||Robert Holmes|
|Carl Eller‡||LE||Jerry Mays|
|Gary Larsen||LT||Curley Culp‡|
|Alan Page‡||RT||Buck Buchanan‡|
|Jim Marshall||RE||Aaron Brown|
|Roy Winston||LLB||Bobby Bell‡|
|Lonnie Warwick||MLB||Willie Lanier‡|
|Wally Hilgenberg||RLB||Jim Lynch|
|Earsell Mackbee||LCB||Jim Marsalis|
|Ed Sharockman||RCB||Emmitt Thomas‡|
|Karl Kassulke||LS||Jim Kearney|
|Paul Krause‡||RS||Johnny Robinson‡|
Note: A seven-official system was not used until 1978
The 1969 AFL Championship Game was the tenth and final AFL championship game, held at the Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Oakland, California, on January 4, 1970. It matched the Kansas City Chiefs (11–3) and the Oakland Raiders (12–1–1), both of the Western Division. Oakland had won the two regular season games between the two teams and were slight favorites.The Chiefs won 17–7 on the strength of 17 straight points in the last three quarters and represented the AFL in Super Bowl IV the following week. This was the final AFL game.1969 American Football League season
The 1969 American Football League season was the tenth and final regular season of the American Football League (AFL). To honor the AFL's tenth season, a special anniversary logo was designed and each Kansas City Chiefs player wore a patch on his jersey with the logo during Super Bowl IV, the final AFL-NFL World Championship Game prior to the merger of the two leagues.
The Chiefs defeated the Oakland Raiders in the final AFL Championship Game, then soundly defeated the National Football League's Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV.1969 Minnesota Vikings season
The 1969 season was the Minnesota Vikings' ninth season in the National Football League. With a 12–2 record, the Vikings won the NFL Central division title, before beating the Los Angeles Rams in the Western Conference Championship Game, and the Cleveland Browns in the last NFL Championship Game ever played in the pre-merger era. With these wins, the Vikings became the last team to possess the Ed Thorp Memorial Trophy, introduced 35 years earlier in 1934.
However, Minnesota lost Super Bowl IV in New Orleans to the AFL champion Kansas City Chiefs in the final professional football game between the two leagues. It was the second consecutive Super Bowl win for the younger league.
The Vikings won the last NFL Championship prior to the league's merger with the American Football League. The season was chronicled for America's Game: The Missing Rings, as one of the five greatest NFL teams to never win the Super Bowl.1969 NFL Championship Game
The 1969 NFL Championship Game was the 37th and final championship game prior to the AFL–NFL merger, played January 4, 1970, at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, Minnesota, a suburb south of Minneapolis. The winner of the game earned a berth in Super Bowl IV in New Orleans against the champion of the American Football League.The Minnesota Vikings of the Western Conference hosted the Cleveland Browns of the Eastern Conference. It was the Vikings' first appearance in the title game, while the Browns were making their second straight appearance and fourth of the 1960s.
Minnesota had a regular season record of 12–2, including a 51–3 defeat of the Browns eight weeks earlier on November 9. The Vikings defeated the Los Angeles Rams 23–20 in the Western Conference championship a week earlier at Met Stadium. They were coached by Bud Grant and led on offense by quarterback Joe Kapp and wide receiver Gene Washington. The defense allowed only 133 points (9½ per game) during the regular season and their four defensive linemen were known as the "Purple People Eaters."
Cleveland was 10–3–1 during the regular season and had upset the Dallas Cowboys 38–14 at the Cotton Bowl for the Eastern Conference title. The Browns were coached by Blanton Collier; Bill Nelsen was the starting quarterback and Gary Collins and Paul Warfield were star wide receivers for the team.
Although not as severe as the "Ice Bowl" of 1967, the weather conditions were bitterly cold at 8 °F (−13 °C), with a sub-zero wind chill factor. Cleveland linebacker Jim Houston suffered frostbite during the game and was hospitalized.
Minnesota was favored by nine points to win the title game at home, and they won, 27–7.Of the four NFL teams that joined the league during the AFL era (1960s), Minnesota was the sole winner of a pre-merger NFL championship. The Dallas Cowboys entered the league in 1960 and lost two NFL title games to the Green Bay Packers, in 1966 and 1967. The expansion Atlanta Falcons (1966) and New Orleans Saints (1967) did not qualify for the postseason until 1978 and 1987, respectively.
The Vikings would go on to lose Super Bowl IV 23-7 to the AFL champion Kansas City Chiefs. Starting with the 1970 season, the NFL champion was determined in the Super Bowl, beginning with Super Bowl V.Charlie West
Charlie West (born August 31, 1946 in Big Spring, Texas) is a former safety who played for three National Football League teams. He played in Super Bowl IV as a member of the Minnesota Vikings. He also still holds the UTEP career record of 19 interceptions, including a school record four in one game. Today, he presently lives near New York City and coaches the Carmel High School football team in New York serving as the defensive coordinator.
Charlie West returned kicks and punts for the Minnesota Vikings, and still holds the team's record for longest punt return. On November 3, 1968, playing the Washington Redskins, West returned a Mike Bragg punt 98 yards for a touchdown.Chuck Hurston
Charles Frederick (Chuck) Hurston (November 9, 1942 – November 3, 2015) was a professional American football defensive end who played seven professional seasons from 1964-1971. He was drafted by the American Football League's Buffalo Bills in 1965. After winning the American Football League Championship with the Chiefs in 1966, he started for them in the first AFL-NFL World Championship Game. He was also with the 1969 Chiefs who won Super Bowl IV. He died of cancer in 2015.Dave Hill (American football)
David Harris Hill (born February 1, 1941) is a former American football player.
Hill was born in Lanett, Alabama and attended Lanett High School. He graduated in 1959 and attended Auburn University along with fellow Lanett High School alumnus, Bobby Hunt. Hunt played quarterback and defensive back while Hill played offensive and defensive line.
A 24th round draft choice in 1963 for the American Football League's Kansas City Chiefs, he wore jersey number 73. Hill went on to play 149 games in all with the Chiefs, the fourth most ever by a Kansas City offensive lineman. At one point, he did not miss a game for nine straight seasons.
He started for the Chiefs at right tackle in Super Bowl I and Super Bowl IV, earning two AFL Championship rings and a World Championship ring, and playing in the first (Super Bowl I) and last (Super Bowl IV) World Championships between the champions of the AFL and the NFL. In Super Bowl IV, he handled well one of the best defensive ends of that era, Carl Eller, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, as the Chiefs rushed for 151 yards that day, for their only Super Bowl title to date.Ed Sharockman
Edward Charles "Ed" Sharockman (November 4, 1939 – August 19, 2017) was a professional American football defensive back.Sharockman graduated from the University of Pittsburgh, where he starred as a cornerback. He played 11 seasons in the National Football League, all with the Minnesota Vikings (1961–1972). He started in Super Bowl IV.
In 1970, Sharockman enjoyed a banner day against the Dallas Cowboys, blocking a punt and recovering it for a touchdown, and also returning an intercepted Craig Morton pass for another touchdown in the Vikings' 54-13 annihilation of the eventual NFC champions.Frank Pitts
Frank H. Pitts (born November 12, 1943 in Atlanta, Georgia) is a former professional American football wide receiver in the American Football League (AFL) and the National Football League (NFL). He played ten seasons for the AFL's Kansas City Chiefs (1965–1969) and then the NFL's Chiefs (1970), Cleveland Browns (1971–1973) and Oakland Raiders (1974).Hank Stram
Henry Louis "Hank" Stram (; January 3, 1923 – July 4, 2005) was an American football coach. He is best known for his 15-year tenure with the Dallas Texans/Kansas City Chiefs of the American Football League (AFL) and National Football League (NFL).
Stram won three AFL championships, more than any other coach in the league's history. He then won Super Bowl IV with the Chiefs, thus earning the 1969 World Championship of Professional Football. He also coached the most victories (87), had the most post-season games (7) and the best post-season record in the AFL (5–2). Stram is largely responsible for the introduction of Gatorade to the NFL due to his close association with Ray Graves, coach at the University of Florida during Gatorade's development and infancy. Stram never had an offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator, or special teams coach during his career with the Texans and Chiefs.Jim Kearney
James Lee Kearney (born January 21, 1943 in Wharton, Texas) is a former American football safety who played twelve seasons in the National Football League and the American Football League from 1965-1976. In college, he played quarterback for Prairie View A&M, where one of his wide receivers was future Kansas City Chiefs teammate Otis Taylor. He was drafted in the 11th round of the 1965 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions. He then played for the Chiefs from 1967 through 1975 and for the New Orleans Saints in 1976. He started in Super Bowl IV for the Kansas City Chiefs. In 1972, he tied an NFL record by returning four interceptions for touchdowns. He also led the league with 192 yards on interception returns. He wore jersey number 46 while with the Chiefs. In retirement, he has taken up golf and coached little league football in the Kansas City area.John Henderson (wide receiver)
John William Henderson (born March 21, 1943) is a former professional American football player. He played college football for the University of Michigan in 1963 and 1964 and in the National Football League (NFL) from 1965 to 1972. He was the leading receiver in Super Bowl IV with seven catches for 111 yards.
Henderson was born in Dayton, Ohio, in 1943 and attended Roosevelt High School. He played college football at the end position for the Michigan Wolverines football team in 1963 and 1964. He gained 330 receiving yards on 27 catches in 1963 and 377 yards on 31 catches in 1964.Henderson was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fifth round (63rd overall) of the 1965 NFL Draft. He played eight seasons in the NFL for the Detroit Lions (1965–1967) and the Minnesota Vikings (1968–1972). His best year in the NFL was 1969 when he caught 34 passes for 553 yards and five touches. The Vikings won the 1969 NFL Championship Game and advanced to play the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl IV; Henderson was the game's leading receiver with seven catches for 111 yards. In his eight-year NFL career, Henderson appeared in 93 games and had 108 receptions for 1,735 yards and 10 touchdowns.Johnny Robinson (safety)
Johnny Nolan Robinson (born September 9, 1938) is a former American football safety. He played college football at Louisiana State University (LSU).
Robinson played his entire career for the Dallas Texans / Kansas City Chiefs of the American Football League (AFL) and later the National Football League (NFL). He led the AFL in interceptions with 10 in 1966, and led the NFL in 1970 with 10. He had 57 interceptions over his career. He is a 2019 inductee to the Pro Football Hall of Fame becoming the ninth member of the Chiefs Super Bowl IV championship team, including coach Hank Stram, to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.Karl Kassulke
Karl Otto Kassulke (March 20, 1941 – October 26, 2008) was a professional American football player.
Kassulke graduated from Drake, where he starred as a safety. He played 10 seasons in the National Football League, all with the Minnesota Vikings. Kassulke started in Super Bowl IV, where he and teammate Earsell Mackbee missed a tackle on Otis Taylor on the final touchdown of the game, late in the third quarter. The next season, he was selected to the Pro Bowl.
On July 24, 1973, Kassulke suffered a motorcycle accident on the way to training camp that left him paralyzed from the waist down.After his playing career, Kassulke worked with Wings Outreach, a Christian Ministry to the disabled.Kassulke was immortalized in NFL lore by NFL Films' official highlight film for Super Bowl IV. Kansas City Chiefs coach Hank Stram, who was wired for sound by NFL Films executive producer Ed Sabol, noted the confusion in the Vikings' defense due to the Chiefs' shifting offense and quipped, "Kassulke was running around there like it was a Chinese fire drill".List of Super Bowl halftime shows
Halftime shows are a tradition during American football games at all levels of competition. Entertainment during the Super Bowl, the annual championship game of the National Football League (NFL), represents a fundamental link to pop culture, which helps broaden the television audience and nationwide interest. As the Super Bowl itself is typically the most-watched event on television in the United States annually, the halftime show has been equally-viewed in recent years: the halftime show of Super Bowl XLIX featuring Katy Perry was viewed by 118.5 million, as part of an overall telecast that peaked at 120.3 million at its conclusion—the most-watched television broadcast in U.S. history. The NFL announced that the Super Bowl LI halftime show, with Lady Gaga was the "most-watched musical event of all-time," citing a figure of 150 million viewers based on the television audience, as well as unique viewership of video postings of the halftime show on the league's platforms, and social media interactions (a metric that was never calculated prior to 2017). The show was seen by 117.5 million television viewers, making it the second-highest-rated halftime show on network broadcast.Prior to the early 1990s, the halftime show was based around a theme, and featured university marching bands (the Grambling State University Marching Band has performed at the most Super Bowl halftime shows, featuring in six shows including at least one per decade from the 1960s to the 1990s), drill teams, and other performance ensembles such as Up with People. Beginning in 1991, the halftime show began to feature pop music acts such as New Kids on the Block and Gloria Estefan. In an effort to boost the prominence of the halftime show to increase viewer interest, Super Bowl XXVII featured a headlining performance by Michael Jackson. After Super Bowl XXXVIII, whose halftime show featured an incident where Justin Timberlake exposed one of Janet Jackson's breasts, the halftime show began to feature classic rock acts until the return of headlining pop musicians in 2011.Lonnie Warwick
Lonnie Preston Warwick (born February 26, 1942) is a former professional American football player. He played 10 seasons in the National Football League, with the Minnesota Vikings and Atlanta Falcons. He started in Super Bowl IV.Oscar Reed
Oscar Reed (born March 24, 1944) is a former professional American football player who played running back for eight seasons for the Minnesota Vikings and Atlanta Falcons. He started Super Bowl VIII for the Vikings and also played in Super Bowl IV and Super Bowl IX.Tom Bettis
Thomas William Bettis (March 17, 1933 – February 28, 2015) was an All-American football linebacker, NFL player, and NFL coach. After starring at Purdue, Bettis was selected by the Green Bay Packers in the first round of the 1955 NFL Draft. He played nine seasons for the Packers, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the Chicago Bears. After his playing career, Bettis went on to coach in the NFL for 30 years, including for the 1969–70 Super Bowl IV champions and the 1966–67 AFL champions, the Kansas City Chiefs. Bettis served as interim coach of the Chiefs in 1977 after the firing of Paul Wiggin. In seven games as head coach, Bettis compiled a 1–6 record, ending a 12-year stint as a coach of the Chiefs. He returned in 1988 to be the defensive backs coach of the Chiefs. He was inducted into both the Purdue University Athletic Hall of Fame and the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame.Bettis died on February 28, 2015.Warpaint (mascot)
Warpaint is a pinto horse that is the mascot for the Kansas City Chiefs National Football League (NFL) team. The current mascot is the third to hold the position. The horse is associated with the Chiefs' glory days at Municipal Stadium when the team won two American Football League (AFL) championships, and the horse led the team's victory parade after its win in Super Bowl IV. After the original Warpaint's retirement in 1989, the team used K.C. Wolf as their lone mascot from 1989 to 2009. In keeping with the celebration of the AFL's 50th anniversary, the Chiefs decided to bring back the tradition of Warpaint for the 2009 season, introducing the new horse at the team's home-opener against the Oakland Raiders.
Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl IV champions
|Playoff appearances (20)|
|Division championships (10)|
|League championships (3)|
|Current league affiliations|
|Former league affiliation|
Championship seasons in bold
|Division championships (20)|
|Conference championships (4)|
|League championships (1)|
|Current league affiliations|
Championship seasons in bold
National Football League Championship Games (1933–present)
|NFL Championship Game|
|AFL Championship Game|
|AFL-NFL World Championship Games |
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.
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