Super Bowl I
Super Bowl I Logo svg
1 2 3 4 Total
KC 0 10 0 0 10
GB 7 7 14 7 35
Date January 15, 1967 (1967-01-15)
Stadium Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles
MVP Bart Starr, Quarterback
Favorite Packers by 14
National anthem University of Arizona and University of Michigan Bands
Coin toss Norm Schachter
Referee Norm Schachter
Halftime show University of Arizona and University of Michigan Bands
Attendance 61,946

Future Hall of Famers

TV in the United States
Network CBS and NBC
Announcers CBS: Ray Scott, Jack Whitaker and Frank Gifford
NBC: Curt Gowdy and Paul Christman
Nielsen ratings CBS: 22.6
(est. 26.75 million viewers)[1]
NBC: 18.5
(est. 24.43 million viewers)[2]
(Total: 51.18 million viewers)</small>[3]
Market share CBS: 43
NBC: 36
Cost of 30-second commercial US$42,000 (Both CBS and NBC)
  Super Bowl II > 

The First AFL-NFL World Championship Game in professional American football, later known as Super Bowl I and referred to in some contemporary reports as the Supergame,[4] was played on January 15, 1967 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California.

The National Football League (NFL) champion Green Bay Packers (14–2) scored 3 second-half touchdowns en route to a 35–10 win over the American Football League (AFL) champion Kansas City Chiefs (12–3–1). Green Bay quarterback Bart Starr, who completed 16 of 23 passes for 250 yards and two touchdowns, with 1 interception, was named Super Bowl MVP.



The First AFL-NFL World Championship Game was established as part of the June 8, 1966 merger agreement between the NFL and the AFL. However, Los Angeles was not awarded the game until six weeks prior to the kickoff. The date of the game was also not set until around that time. Since the AFL Championship Game was originally scheduled for Monday, December 26 and the NFL Championship Game for Sunday, January 1 (the reverse of the situation in 1960), it was suggested the game be played on Sunday, January 8, 1967. It was eventually decided to hold an unprecedented TV doubleheader on January 1, 1967, with the AFL Championship Game in Buffalo starting at 1 p.m. and the NFL Championship Game in Dallas starting at 4 p.m.

Coming into this first game, there was considerable animosity between the two rival leagues, with both of them putting pressure on their respective champions to trounce the other and prove each league's dominance in professional football. Still, many sports writers and fans believed that the game was a mismatch, and that any team from the long-established NFL was far superior to the best team from the upstart AFL.The 2 teams that played were the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs. The Packers ended up winning 35 to 10.[5]

Kansas City ChiefsEdit

The Chiefs entered the game after recording an 11-2-1 mark during the regular season. In the AFL Championship Game, they beat the Buffalo Bills, 31-7.

Kansas City's high powered offense led the AFL in points scored (448) and total rushing yards (2,274). Their trio of running backs, Mike Garrett (801 yards), Bert Coan (521 yards), and Curtis McClinton (540 yards) all ranked among the top ten rushers in the AFL. Quarterback Len Dawson was the top rated passer in the AFL, completing 159 out of 284 (56 percent) of his passes for 2,527 yards and 26 touchdowns. Wide receiver Otis Taylor provided the team with a great deep threat by recording 58 receptions of 1,297 yards and 8 touchdowns. Receiver Chris Burford added 58 receptions for 758 yards and 8 touchdowns. And tight end Fred Arbanas, who had 22 catches for 305 yards and 4 touchdowns, was one of 6 Chiefs offensive players who were named to the All-AFL team.

The Chiefs also had a strong defense, with All-AFL players Jerry Mays and Buck Buchanan anchoring their line. Linebacker Bobby Bell, who was also named to the All-AFL team, was great at run stopping and pass coverage. But the strongest part of their defense was their secondary, led by All-AFL safeties Johnny Robinson and Bobby Hunt, who each recorded 10 interceptions, and defensive back Fred Williamson, who recorded 4. Their Head Coach was Hank Stram.

Green Bay PackersEdit

The Packers were an NFL dynasty after being a losing team eight years earlier. The team had posted an NFL-worst 1–10–1 record in 1958 before legendary head coach Vince Lombardi was hired in January 1959. But Lombardi was determined to build a winning team. During the offseason, he signed Fred "Fuzzy" Thurston, who had been cut from three other teams but ended up becoming an All-Pro left guard for Green Bay. Lombardi also made a big trade with the Cleveland Browns that brought three players to the team who would become cornerstones of the defense: linemen Henry Jordan, Willie Davis, and Bill Quinlan.

Lombardi's hard work paid off, and the Packers improved to a 7–5 regular season record in 1959. They surprised the league during the following year by making it all the way to the 1960 NFL Championship Game. Although the Packers lost 17–13 to the Philadelphia Eagles, they had sent a clear message that they were no longer losers. Green Bay went on to win NFL Championships in 1961, 1962, 1965, 1966, and 1967.

Packers veteran quarterback Bart Starr was the top-rated quarterback in the NFL for 1966, and won the NFL Most Valuable Player Award, completing 156 out of 251 (62.2 percent) passes for 2,257 yards, 14 touchdowns, and only 3 interceptions. His top targets were wide receivers Boyd Dowler and Carroll Dale, who combined for 63 receptions for 1,336 yards. Fullback Jim Taylor was the team's top rusher with 705 yards, and also caught 41 passes for 331 yards. (Before the season, Taylor had informed the team that instead of returning to the Packers in 1967, he would become a free agent and sign with the expansion New Orleans Saints. Lombardi, infuriated at what he considered to be Taylor's disloyalty, refused to speak to Taylor the entire season.)[6] The team's starting halfback, Paul Hornung, was injured early in the season, but running back Elijah Pitts did a good job as a replacement, gaining 857 combined rushing and receiving yards. And the Packers offensive line was also big reason for the team's success, led by All-Pro guards Jerry Kramer and Thurston, along with Forrest Gregg.

Green Bay also had a superb defense, which displayed its talent on the final drive of the NFL Championship Game, stopping the Dallas Cowboys on 4 consecutive plays starting on the Packers 2-yard line to win the game. Lionel Aldridge had replaced Quinlan, but Jordan and Davis still anchored the defensive line, linebacker Ray Nitschke excelled at run stopping and pass coverage, while the secondary was led by defensive backs Herb Adderley and Willie Wood. Wood was another example of how Lombardi found talent in players that nobody else could see. Wood had been a quarterback in college and was not drafted by an NFL team. When Wood joined the Packers in 1960, he was converted to a free safety and he went on to make the All-Pro team 9 times in his 12 year career.

Super Bowl pregame news and notesEdit

Many people considered it fitting that the Chiefs and the Packers would be the teams to play in the first ever AFL-NFL World Championship Game. Kansas City owner Lamar Hunt was the person who founded the AFL, while Green Bay was widely considered one of the better teams in NFL history (even if they couldn't claim to be founding members of their own league). (CBS announcer Frank Gifford, who interviewed Lombardi prior to the game, said Lombardi was so nervous "he held onto my arm and he was shaking like a leaf. It was incredible.")[7] Lombardi was under intense pressure from the entire NFL that the Packers not only win but preferably win big. The Chiefs saw this game as an opportunity to show they were good enough to play against any NFL team. One player who was really looking forward to compete in this game was Dawson, who had spent 3 years as a backup in the NFL before joining the Chiefs. (The Chiefs were also nervous. Linebacker E. J. Holub said "the Chiefs were scared to death. Guys in the tunnel were throwing up.")[7]

In the week prior to the game, Chiefs cornerback Fred "The Hammer" Williamson garnered considerable publicity by boasting he would use his "hammer"--forearm blows to the head—to destroy the Packers' receivers, stating "Two hammers to (Boyd) Dowler, one to (Carroll) Dale should be enough."[8] The two teams played with their respective footballs from each league- The Chiefs used the AFL ball by Spalding, the Packers played with the NFL ball by Wilson.

The AFL's two-point conversion rule was not used and would not be used in any of the first four Super Bowls.



This game is the only Super Bowl to have been broadcast in the United States by two television networks simultaneously (no other NFL game was subsequently carried nationally on more than one network until December 29, 2007, when the New England Patriots faced the New York Giants on NBC, CBS, and the NFL Network). At the time, CBS held the rights to nationally televise NFL games while NBC had the rights to broadcast AFL games. It was decided to have both of them cover the game.

Each network used its own announcers: Ray Scott (doing play-by-play for the first half), Jack Whitaker (doing play-by-play for the second half), and Frank Gifford provided commentary on CBS; while Curt Gowdy and Paul Christman were on NBC.

NBC did have some problems. A little-known fact about SB I is that at the start of the second half, the Chiefs received the opening kickoff and returned it for good field position, around midfield. However, NBC did not return in time from a halftime commercial break for the start of the second half. Ironically, the AFL network missed the first kickoff and return, and the Chiefs were forced to receive another "official" kickoff, this one being stopped around the Chiefs' twenty. They then advanced the ball to their own 49-yard line, but were intercepted, a play that turned the game around. Professional Football pundits to this day wonder what the game's outcome would have been, had the first kickoff return not been expunged from history. NBC was also forced to broadcast the game over CBS' cameras (CBS received prerogative to use its feed and feed and less innovative camera placement and angles, since the Coliseum was home to the NFL's Rams). In other words, NBC's crew had little to no control over how the game was shot.

Super Bowl I was the only Super Bowl in history that was not a sellout in terms of attendance, despite a TV blackout in the Los Angeles area (at the time, NFL games were required to be blacked out in the market of origin, even if it was a neutral site game and if it sold out). Days before the game, local newspapers printed editorials about what they viewed as a then-exorbitant $12 USD price for tickets, and wrote stories about how to pirate the signal from TV stations outside the Los Angeles area.

Lost footageEdit

Much to the dismay of television historians, all known broadcast tapes which recorded the game in its entirety were subsequently destroyed in a process of wiping, the reusing of videotape by taping over previous content, by both networks. This was due to the idea that the game wasn't going to become what it did, plus videotapes were extremely expensive back then. This has prevented contrast and compare studies of how each network handled their respective coverage. Despite this, television and sports archivists remain on the lookout, and at least two small samples of the telecast survive: a recording of Max McGee's opening touchdown and Jim Taylor's first touchdown run (Packers' second touchdown), both were shown on HBO's 1991 two-part sports documentary, Play by Play: A History of Sports Television.

NFL Films had a camera crew present, and retains a substantial amount of film footage in its archives, some of which has been released for home video and cable presentations.

In January of 2011, it was reported that a recording of the CBS telecast had been found in a Pennsylvania attic and restored by the Paley Center for Media in New York.[9] The 2" color videotape is incomplete, and is missing the halftime show and most of the third-quarter footage, but is still the most complete version of the broadcast yet discovered.

Ceremonies and entertainmentEdit

The first Super Bowl halftime show featured American trumpeter Al Hirt, and the marching bands from the University of Arizona and Grambling State University. (At least one source[10] incorrectly lists the University of Michigan Band.)

The postgame, trophy presentation ceremony was handled by CBS' Pat Summerall and NBC's George Ratterman. Summerall and Ratterman were forced to share a single microphone.

Game summaryEdit

After both teams traded punts on their first possessions of the game, the Packers jumped out to an early 7–0 lead, driving 80 yards in 6 plays. On the last play, Bart Starr threw a pass to reserve receiver Max McGee, who had replaced injured starter Boyd Dowler earlier in the drive. McGee slipped past Chiefs cornerback Willie Mitchell, made a one-handed catch at the 23-yard line, and then took off for a 37-yard touchdown reception. On their ensuing drive, the Chiefs moved the ball to Green Bay's 33-yard line, but kicker Mike Mercer missed a 40-yard field goal.

Early in the second quarter, Kansas City marched 66 yards in 6 plays, featuring a 31-yard reception by receiver Otis Taylor, to tie the game on a 7-yard pass to Curtis McClinton from quarterback Len Dawson. But the Packers responded on their next drive, advancing 73 yards down the field and scoring on fullback Jim Taylor's 14-yard touchdown run with the team's famed "Power Sweep" play. Dawson was sacked for an 8-yard loss on the first play of the Chiefs next drive. But he followed it up with four consecutive completions for 58 yards, including a 27-yarder to Chris Burford, setting up Mercer's 31-yard field goal to make the score 14-10 at the end of the half.

At halftime, it appeared that the Chiefs had a chance to win. Many people watching the game were surprised how close the score was and how well the AFL's champions were playing. Kansas City actually outgained the Packers in total yards, 181–164, and had 11 first downs compared to the Packers' 9. The Chiefs were exuberant at halftime. Hank Stram said later "I honestly thought we would come back and win it."[7] The Packers were disappointed with the quality of their play in the first half. "The coach was concerned" said defensive end Willie Davis later.[7] Lombardi told them the game plan was sound but that they had to tweak some things and execute better.[11]

On their first drive of the second half, the Chiefs advanced to their own 49-yard line. But on a third down pass play, a heavy blitz by linebackers Dave Robinson and Lee Roy Caffey rushed Dawson's throw, and the ball was intercepted by Willie Wood, who then returned it 50 yards to Kansas City's 5-yard line.("the biggest play of the game," wrote Starr later[11]). On their first play after the turnover, running back Elijah Pitts scored on a 5-yard touchdown run to give the Packers a 21-10 lead.

The Packers defense would then dominate the Chiefs offense for the rest of the game, only allowing them to cross midfield once, and for just one play. The Chiefs were forced to deviate from their game plan, and that hurt them. The Chiefs' offense totaled 12 yards in the third quarter, and Dawson was held to 5 out of 12 second half pass completions for 59 yards.

Meanwhile, Green Bay forced Kansas City to punt from their own 2-yard line after sacking Dawson twice and got the ball back with good field position on their own 44. McGee subsequently caught 3 passes for 40 yards on a 56-yard drive that ended with his 13-yard touchdown reception. Midway through the fourth quarter, Starr completed a 25-yard pass to Carroll Dale and a 37-yard strike to McGee, moving the ball to the Chiefs 18-yard line. Four plays later, Pitts scored his second touchdown on a 1-yard run to close out the scoring, giving the Packers the 35-10 win. Also in the fourth quarter, Fred Williamson, who had boasted about his "hammer" prior to the game, was knocked out when his head collided with running back Donny Anderson's knee, and then suffered a broken arm when Chiefs linebacker Sherrill Headrick fell on him.[7] Williamson had three tackles for the game.

Hornung was the only Packer not to see any action. Lombardi had asked him in the fourth quarter if he wanted to go in, but Hornung declined, not wanting to aggravate a pinched nerve in his neck. McGee, who caught only four passes for 91 yards and one touchdown during the season, finished Super Bowl I with seven receptions for 138 yards and two touchdowns.

The Green Bay Packers were each paid a salary of $15,000 as the winning team. The Chiefs were paid $7,500 each.[12]

Box scoreEdit

1 2 3 4 Total
Chiefs 0 10 0 0


Packers 7 7 14 7


at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum

  • Date: January 15, 1967
  • Game time: 1:15 p.m. PST
  • Game weather: 72 °F (22 °C), sunny[13]
Quarter Time Team Drive Scoring Information Score
Length Plays Time KC GB
1 6:04 GB 80 6 3:06 TD: Max McGee 37 yard pass from Bart Starr (Don Chandler kick) 0 7
2 10:40 KC 66 6 3:44 TD: Curtis McClinton 7 yard pass from Len Dawson (Mike Mercer kick) 7 7
2 4:37 GB 73 13 6:03 TD: Jim Taylor 14 yard run (Don Chandler kick) 7 14
2  :54 KC 50 7 3:43 FG: Mike Mercer 31 yards 10 14
3 12:33 GB 5 1  :09 TD: Elijah Pitts 5 yard run (Don Chandler kick) 10 21
3  :51 GB 56 10 5:25 TD: Max McGee 13 yard pass from Bart Starr (Don Chandler kick) 10 28
4 6:35 GB 80 8 4:13 TD: Elijah Pitts 1 yard run (Don Chandler kick) 10 35

Final statisticsEdit


Statistical comparisonEdit

Kansas City Chiefs Green Bay Packers
First downs1721
Third down efficiency3/1311/15
Fourth down efficiency0/00/0
Total yards239361
Passing yards167228
Passing – Completions-attempts17-3216-24
Rushing yards72133
Rushing attempts1934
Yards per rush3.83.9
Interceptions thrown11
Time of possession28:3531:25

Note: According to NBC Radio announcer Jim Simpson's report at halftime of the game, Kansas City led 11 to 9 in first downs at halftime, 181 to 164 in total yards, and 142 to 113 in passing yards (Green Bay led 51 to 39 in rushing yards). Bart Starr was 8 of 13 with no interceptions, while Len Dawson was 11 of 15 with no interceptions. Green Bay led 14-10 at halftime. Green Bay had the ball five times, although only for a minute or so on the last possession; they punted on their first possession, scored a touchdown on their second, punted on their third, scored a touchdown on their fourth, and had the ball when the half ended on their fifth. Kansas City had the ball four times --- punting on their first possession, driving to a missed field goal on their second possession, scoring a touchdown on their third, and kicking a field goal on their fourth.

This means that, in the second half, Green Bay led 12 to 6 in first downs, 203 to 58 in total yards, 115 to 25 in passing yards, and 82 to 33 in rushing yards (the Packers won the second half, 21-0). Starr and his late-game replacement, Zeke Bratkowski, were 8 for 11 with one interception; Dawson and his late-game replacement, Pete Beatherd, were just 6 for 17, also with one interception. Each team had the ball seven times in the second half, although Green Bay's first possession was just one play and their seventh possession was abbreviated because the game ended. Green Bay scored a touchdown on their first (one play) possession, punted on their second, scored a touchdown on their third, was intercepted at KC's 15 yard line on their fourth (just Starr's fourth interception of the year), scored a touchdown on their fifth, punted on their sixth, and had the ball when the game ended on their seventh possession. Kansas City was intercepted on their first possession --- Wood's return to the five set up Pitts' TD that made it 21-10 --- and then punted on each of their next six possessions.

Individual leadersEdit

Chiefs Passing
Len Dawson 16/27 211 1 1
Chiefs Rushing
Cara Yds TD LGb
Mike Garrett 6 17 0 9
Curtis McClinton 6 16 0 6
Chiefs Receiving
Recc Yds TD LGb
Chris Burford 4 67 0 27
Otis Taylor 4 57 0 31
Mike Garrett 3 28 0 17
Packers Passing
Bart Starr 16/23 250 2 1
Packers Rushing
Cara Yds TD LGb
Jim Taylor 17 56 1 14
Elijah Pitts 11 45 2 12
Packers Receiving
Recc Yds TD LGb
Max McGee 7 138 2 37
Carroll Dale 4 59 0 25

*Completions/Attempts aCarries bLong play cReceptions

Starting lineupsEdit


Kansas City Position Green Bay
Chris Burford SE Carroll Dale
Jim Tyrer LT Bob Skoronski
Ed Budde LG Fuzzy Thurston
Wayne Frazier C Bill Curry
Curt Merz RG Jerry Kramer
Dave Hill RT Forrest Gregg
Fred Arbanas TE Marv Fleming
Otis Taylor FL Boyd Dowler
Len Dawson QB Bart Starr
Mike Garrett HB Elijah Pitts
Curtis McClinton FB Jim Taylor
Jerry Mays LE Willie Davis
Andy Rice LT Ron Kostelnik
Buck Buchanan RT Henry Jordan
Chuck Hurston RE Lionel Aldridge
Bobby Bell LLB Dave Robinson
Sherrill Headrick MLB Ray Nitschke
E. J. Holub RLB Lee Roy Caffey
Fred Williamson LCB Herb Adderley
Willie Mitchell RCB Bob Jeter
Bobby Hunt LS Tom Brown
Johnny Robinson RS Willie Wood


  • Referee: Norm Schachter (NFL)
  • Umpire: George Young (AFL)
  • Head Linesman: Bernie Ulman (NFL)
  • Line Judge: Al Sabato (AFL)
  • Field Judge: Mike Lisetski (NFL)
  • Back Judge: Jack Reader (AFL)

Note: A seven-official system was not used before 1978.

Since officials from the NFL and AFL wore different uniform designs, a "neutral" uniform was designed for this game. These uniforms had the familiar black and white stripes, but the sleeves were all black with the official's uniform number. This design was also worn in Super Bowl II, but was discontinued after that game when AFL officials began wearing uniforms identical to those of the NFL during the 1968 season, in anticipation of the AFL-NFL merger in 1970.

See alsoEdit


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