When the conversation is on Super Bowl history….Super Bowl III just might be the most talked about Super Bowl of all time….and the reason is because the game pitted a young, confident group of players from the “2nd tier” AFC with the flashy, bodacious quarterback verses the grizzled vet laden group of championship calibre talent spearheaded by an incomparible future Hall of Fame quarterback….and not many fans outside of New York City even thought these “young cocky upstarts” had a snoball’s chance in Hell….and that is why Super Bowl III is talked about in so many Super Bowl conversations….which makes this video well worth the watch.
Super Bowl III was the third AFL–NFL Championship Game in professional American football…and the first to officially bear the name “Super Bowl”. The game, played on January 12, 1969, at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida….and is regarded as one of the greatest upsets in American sports history. The heavy underdog American Football League (AFL) champion New York Jets defeated the National Football League (NFL) champion Baltimore Colts by a score of 16–7. This was the first Super Bowl victory for the AFL….which before the start of the game…most sports writers and fans believed that AFL teams were less talented than NFL clubs….so, they almost unanimously expected the Colts to defeat the Jets by a wide margin….as Baltimore had posted a 13–1 record during the 1968 NFL season before defeating the Cleveland Browns, 34–0, in the 1968 NFL Championship Game….while the Jets finished the 1968 AFL season at 11–3….then defeated the Oakland Raiders, 27–23, in the 1968 AFL Championship Game.
Undaunted, Jets quarterback Joe Namath made an appearance three days before the Super Bowl at the Miami Touchdown Club and brashly guaranteed a victory….which his team backed up his words by controlling most of the game while building a 16–0 lead by the fourth quarter off of a touchdown run by Matt Snell and three field goals by Jim Turner. Colts quarterback Earl Morrall threw three interceptions before being replaced by Johnny Unitas….who then led Baltimore to its only touchdown during the last few minutes of the game. With the victory. the Jets remain the only winning Super Bowl team to only score one touchdown (either offensive, defensive, or special teams). Namath, who completed 17 out of 28 passes for 206 yards, was named as the Super Bowl’s Most Valuable Player, despite not throwing a touchdown pass in the game or any passes at all in the fourth quarter.
This was the first Super Bowl to feature famous celebrities during its ceremonies instead of just college bands….as comedian Bob Hope led a pregame ceremony honoring the Apollo astronauts. After the AFL–NFL merger in 1970….the Colts were one of three teams that moved to the newly formed American Football Conference (AFC)….which was the same conference as the Jets. This thus remains the only Super Bowl contested by teams now in the same Conference….thus meaning it is the only Super Bowl for which a Super Bowl rematch cannot occur…. unless the league radically changes its divisional alignment and/or playoff structure….or one of the teams moves to the National Football Conference (NFC)).