American Football Database

Football Follies are collections of American football bloopers performed by National Football League players. Produced by NFL Films, these collections also spoof parts of popular culture. Mel Blanc joined in the fun in 1976 with The Son of Football Follies, and returned (in one of his final efforts) in 1989 for The Super Duper Football Follies. In addition, Jonathan Winters was featured in 1987's The NFL TV Follies, intended as a parody of the relationship between football and television.

The series of films currently airs on NFL Network, usually as filler programming when a live game is airing on another network (most commonly Sunday or Monday Night Football).

The First Football Follies

The first film using sports bloopers to satirize PR hype nearly didn't get off the ground. The coaching staff of the Philadelphia Eagles brought the film to the Eagles training camp in 1969, but feared that the Eagle players would be angry when they saw the mistakes made by themselves and other NFL players. Instead, the film was met with roaring laughter, and was an instant hit with the players.

Soon, Johnny Carson began airing those football foul-ups on The Tonight Show in 1969 as a weekly series, with a popular response from football fans. The Football Follies were officially produced by NFL Films in 1968.

Best of the Football Follies

In 1985, NFL Films released The Best of the Football Follies, a look back at some of the series' highlights. This special features two new segments: The story of two teams whose history was filled with follies - the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the lovable losers the New Orleans Saints, who had gone 78-203 in their history with only one season at .500 (both teams would win Super Bowls in the decades following the special); the special also included outtakes from the NFL's Best Ever Coaches (produced in 1981), focusing on head coaches (notably Dick Vermeil and Hank Stram at Super Bowl IV) who were wired for sound.

Other titles

Several imitators have surfaced in response to the original Football Follies, even in sports other than football. Below is a list of sequels and imitators, listed by year:

  • The Football Follies - 1968
  • Those Fantastic Football Follies - 1970
  • Son of Football Follies - 1976 - featuring voices by Mel Blanc
  • A Festival of Funnies - 1980 - includes a short set entirely to music about a boy who manages to score a touchdown on a team of older boys
  • The NFL Symfunny - 1980
  • NFL Follies Go Hollywood - 1983 - features a rare onscreen appearance by John Facenda
  • The Best of the Football Follies - 1985
  • The All New NFL Football Follies - 1986
  • The NFL TV Follies - 1987 - hosted by Jonathan Winters
  • The Super Duper Football Follies - 1989
  • Football Follies on Parade - 1990
  • Phenomenal Football Follies - 1990
  • Foul-ups, Fumbles & Follies - 1991
  • Football Card Follies - 1992
  • 100 Greatest Follies - 1994
  • NFL's Newest Follies - 1995 - hosted by Dom Irrera
  • Offsides - 1995
  • Best of NFL follies - 1996
  • Talkin' Follies - 1997
  • The Nfl All-Star Follies - 1999
  • 21st Century Follies - 2000 - narrated by Sara Moon
  • Football Comedy - 2003
  • Follies The Next Generation - 2005 - hosted by Nick Bakay
  • Legends of the follies - 2007
  • 2007 Fall follies - 2007 - Includes spoof of America's Game portraying the 2007 Dolphins
  • NFL Top 10 Follies - 2009
  • NFL New Year's Mis-tackular
  • NFL Holiday Spectacular

(Note: Titles in this list are licensed by the NFL.)