1920 Rochester Jeffersons season
|1920 Rochester Jeffersons season|
|Head coach||Jack Forsyth|
|General manager||Leo Lyons|
|Home field||Baseball Park|
|League place||6th in APFA|
The 1920 Rochester Jeffersons season was the franchise's inaugural season in the American Professional Football Association (APFA) and thirteenth as an American football team. The Jeffersons entered 1920 coming off a six-win, two-loss, two-tie (6–2–2) record in the New York Pro Football League (NYPFL) where it lose the championship game to the Buffalo Prospects. Several representatives from another professional football league, the Ohio League, wanted to form a new national league, and thus the APFA was created.
Ownership, roster, and coaching nearly stayed the same for the 1920 season. The team opened the season with a 10–0 victory over the non-APFA All-Buffalo. The only time the Jeffersons played a game against an APFA team was week six, when they lost to the Buffalo All-Americans. The team ended with a 6–3–2 record, which was good enough for them to finish sixth place in the final standings. The sportswriter Bruce Copeland compiled the 1920 All-Pro list, but no players from the Jeffersonss were on it. As of 2012, no player from the 1920 Rochester Jeffersons has been enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The Rochester Jeffersons finished 6–2–1 in their 1919 season. It lost the NYPFL championship to the Buffalo All-Americans. After the 1919 season, representatives of four Ohio League teams—the Canton Bulldogs, the Cleveland Tigers, the Dayton Triangles, and the Akron Pros—called a meeting on August 20, 1920, to discuss the formation of a new league. At the meeting, they tentatively agreed on a salary cap and pledged not to sign college players or players already under contract with other teams. They also agreed on a name for the circuit: the American Professional Football Conference. They then invited other professional teams to a second meeting on September 17.
At that meeting, held at Bulldogs owner Ralph Hay's Hupmobile showroom in Canton, representatives of the Rock Island Independents, the Muncie Flyers, the Decatur Staleys, the Racine Cardinals, the Massillon Tigers, the Chicago Cardinals, and the Hammond Pros agreed to join the league. Representatives of the All-Americans and Rochester Jeffersons could not attend the meeting, but sent letters to Hay asking to be included in the league. Team representatives changed the league's name slightly to the American Professional Football Association and elected officers, installing Jim Thorpe as president. Under the new league structure, teams created their schedules dynamically as the season progressed, so there were no minimum or maximum number of games needed to be played. Also, representatives of each team voted to determine the winner of the APFA trophy.
|1||No game scheduled|
|2||October 3, 1920||vs. All-Buffalo||10–0 W||Baseball Park||2,000||1–0|
|3||October 10, 1920||vs. Fort Porter||66–0 W||Baseball Park||N/A||2–0|
|4||October 17, 1920||vs. Utica Knights of Columbus||0–0 T||Baseball Park/Canisius Field[A]||N/A||2–0–1|
|5||October 24, 1920||vs. Syracuse Stars||21–7 W||Baseball Park||N/A||3–0–1|
|6||October 31, 1920||at Buffalo All-Americans||17–6 L||Canisius Field||7,500||3–1–1|
|7||November 7, 1920||vs. Utica Knights of Columbus||27–7 W||Baseball Park||N/A||4–1–1|
|8||November 14, 1920||vs. All-Tonawanda Lumberjacks||6–0 L||Baseball Park||N/A||4–2–1|
|9||November 21, 1920||vs. Rochester Scalpers||16–0 W||Baseball Park||N/A||5–2–1|
|10||November 25, 1920||vs. All-Tonawanda Lumberjacks||14–3 L||Baseball Park||2,500||5–3–1|
|November 28, 1920||vs. Rochester Scalpers||7–6 W||Baseball Park||N/A||6–3–1|
|11||December 5, 1920||vs. Rochester Scalpers||0–0 T||Exposition Park||N/A||6–3–2|
|12||No game scheduled|
|13||No game scheduled|
|A dagger () indicates teams not affiliated with the APFA.|
- A ^ NFL History states this game was played at Baseball Park, while the Professional Football Researchers Association states the game was played at Canisius Field.
|1920 APFA standings|
|Rock Island Independents||6||2||2||.750||4–2–1||201||49||W1|
Brunswick-Balke Collender Cup and named APFA Champions.
Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.
- Western New York Committee 2007, p. 1
- Quirk & Fort 1997, p. 430
- "1919 Rochester Jeffersons". The Pro Football Archives. Maher Sports Media. Retrieved October 22, 2012.
- Crippen 2001, p. 3
- PFRA Research 1980, pp. 3–4
- Siwoff, Zimmber & Marini 2010, pp. 352–353
- PFRA Research 1980, p. 4
- "Thorpe Made President" (PDF). The New York Times. September 19, 1920.
- "Organize Pro Gridders; Choose Thorpe, Prexy". The Milwaukee Journal. September 19, 1920. p. 24.
- Peterson 1997, p. 74
- Davis 2005, p. 59
- Price, Mark (April 25, 2011). "Searching for Lost Trophy". Akron Beacon-Journal. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
- NFL History 2003, pp. 1–7
- Western New York Committee 2007, pp. 2–9
- "NFL – 1920 Regular Season". National Football League. Retrieved January 6, 2013.
- Davis, Jeff (2005). Papa Bear, The Life and Legacy of George Halas. McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-146054-3.
- Hogrogian, John (1984). "1920 All-Pros" (PDF). The Coffin Corner. Professional Football Researchers Association. 6 (1). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 8, 2014.
- Peterson, Robert (1997). Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Football. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-507607-9.
- PFRA Research (1980). "Happy Birthday NFL?" (PDF). The Coffin Corner. Professional Football Researchers Association. 2 (8). Archived from the original (PDF) on June 12, 2011.
- Quirk, James; Fort, Rodney (1997). Pay Dirt: The Business of Professional Team Sports. Princeton University Press. ISBN 9780691015743.
- Siwoff, Seymour; Zimmber, Jon; Marini, Matt (2010). The Official NFL Record and Fact Book 2010. National Football League. ISBN 978-1-60320-833-8.
- Western New York Committee (January 8, 2007). "1920 Rochester Jeffersons" (PDF). Professional Football Researchers Association. Retrieved November 23, 2012.
- Crippen, Ken (July 27, 2009). "The Rochester Jeffersons Take to the National Stage (Part 1)". Two Bills Drive. Retrieved March 14, 1920.