Boston Bears (AFL)

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Boston Bears
Founded 1940
Folded 1940
Based in Boston, Massachusetts, United States
League American Football League III (1940)
Team History Boston Bears (1940)
Team Colors Unknown
Head coaches Eddie Casey
Owner(s) Sheldon H. Fairbanks
Home field(s) Fenway Park

The Boston Bears were a professional American football team that competed in the third American Football League in 1940.[1] Owned by Sheldon H. Fairbanks, the team played its home games in the Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts.[2] Coach Eddie Casey’s team was a competitive one, finishing the 1940 season with a 5-4-1 record, good for third place in the AFL, behind league champions Columbus Bullies and second-place Milwaukee Chiefs.[3]

But success on the field did not transform itself into success in the stands. The Bears became the third professional football team to leave Boston in the space of four years (behind the Redskins of the NFL (which moved to Washington in 1937) and the Boston Shamrocks (of the defunct second American Football League, which folded in 1937; the Shamrocks lasted one more year as an independent team before calling it quits[1]). Before the league’s annual preseason meeting, Fairbanks announced the dissolution of the team (in the meeting, the league tabbed Detroit for an expansion team for the 1941 season to replace the Bears;[4] the team later asked the league for a deferment until 1942, which was granted; but the league suspended operations in the wake of the Pearl Harbor attack and the U.S. entry into World War II).[5][6] Boston would welcome the Boston Yanks of the NFL in the late 1940s, but not have a stable major league football franchise until 1960, when the fourth American Football League’s Boston Patriots started play.

Year W L T Finish Coach[7]
1940 5 4 1 3rd (AFL) Eddie Casey


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b All Those AFLs: N.F.L. Competitors, 1935-41 – Bob Braunwart, Professional Football Research Association (1984)
  2. ^ Indians Occupy Faded Spot in Buffalo's Football Scrapbook – Joe Marren, Professional Football Research Association (1997)
  3. ^ Boston Conquers Yankee Eleven By 20-7 at Stadium – Lewis Funke, New York Times, November 24, 1940
  4. ^ Bob Carroll, Michael Gershman, David Neft, and John Thorn, Total Football II: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League (HarperCollins 1999) ISBN 0-06-039232-0
  5. ^ David L. Porter, ed., Biographical Dictionary of American Sports: Football (Greenwood Press 1987) ISBN 0-313-25771-X, p. 142
  6. ^ George Gipe, The Great American Sports Book (Doubleday 1978) ISBN 0-385-13091-0
  7. ^ When the Indians Roamed Buffalo’s Gridiron – Connie McGillicuddy, Professional Football Research Association (2000)