1975 NFL season
|Duration||September 21 – December 21, 1975|
|Start date||December 27, 1975|
|AFC Champions||Pittsburgh Steelers|
|NFC Champions||Dallas Cowboys|
|Super Bowl X|
|Date||January 18, 1976|
|Site||Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida|
|Date||January 26, 1976|
|Site||Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans|
The 1975 NFL season was the 56th regular season of the National Football League. It was the first NFL season without a tie game. The league made two significant changes to increase the appeal of the game:
- The surviving clubs with the best regular season records were made the home teams for each playoff round. Previously, game sites rotated by division.
- The league pioneered the use of equipping referees with wireless microphones to announce penalties and clarify complex and/or unusual rulings to both fans and the media.
Instead of a traditional Thanksgiving Day game hosted by the Dallas Cowboys, the league scheduled a Buffalo Bills at St. Louis Cardinals contest. This was the first season since 1966 that the Cowboys did not play on that holiday.
Major rule changes
- After a fourth down incomplete pass goes in or through the end zone, the other team will take possession at the previous line of scrimmage. Previously, it resulted in a touchback.
- The penalty for pass interference on the offensive team is reduced from 15 yards to 10.
- If there are fouls by both teams on the same play but one results in a player ejection, the penalties will still offset but the player will still be ejected.
Detroit moved into the Pontiac Silverdome. New Orleans moved into the Louisiana Superdome. The New York Giants played their home games at Shea Stadium, which they shared for 1975 with the New York Jets.
Starting in 1970, through 2001, there were three divisions (Eastern, Central and Western) in each conference. The winners of each division, and a fourth "wild card" team based on the best non-division winner, qualified for the playoffs. The tiebreaker rules were changed to start with head-to-head competition, followed by division records, common opponents' records, and conference play.
National Football Conference
|1||4 teams||1–0–0||Detroit, Minnesota||1–0–0||4 teams||0–1–0||4 teams||1–0–0|
|2||Dallas, Washington||2–0–0||Detroit, Minnesota||2–0–0||Los Angeles||1–1–0||2 teams||2–0–0|
|3||Dallas||3–0–0||Minnesota||3–0–0||Los Angeles||2–1–0||3 teams||2–1–0|
|4||Dallas||4–0–0||Minnesota||4–0–0||Los Angeles||3–1–0||Washington, Detroit||2–1–0|
|5||Dallas||4–1–0||Minnesota||5–0–0||Los Angeles||4–1–0||St. Louis, Detroit||2–1–0|
|8||Washington*||6–2–0||Minnesota||8–0–0||Los Angeles||6–2–0||St. Louis||6–2–0|
|9||St. Louis||7–2–0||Minnesota||9–0–0||Los Angeles||7–2–0||Dallas, Detroit, Washington||6–3–0|
|10||St. Louis||8–2–0||Minnesota||10–0–0||Los Angeles||8–2–0||Dallas||7–3–0|
|11||Dallas*||8–3–0||Minnesota||10–1–0||Los Angeles||9–2–0||St. Louis||8–3–0|
|12||St. Louis||9–3–0||Minnesota||11–1–0||Los Angeles||10–2–0||Dallas||8–4–0|
|13||St. Louis||10–3–0||Minnesota||11–2–0||Los Angeles||11–2–0||Dallas||9–4–0|
|14||St. Louis||11–3–0||Minnesota||12–2–0||Los Angeles||12–2–0||Dallas||10–4–0|
American Football Conference
|1||Baltimore, Buffalo||1–0–0||3 teams||1–0–0||Denver, Oakland||1–0–0||4 teams||1–0–0|
|2||Buffalo||2–0–0||Cincinnati, Houston||2–0–0||Denver, Oakland||2–0–0||2 teams||2–0–0|
W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, PCT = Winning Percentage, PF= Points For, PA = Points Against
wild card berth, – clinched division title– clinched
|New York Jets||3||11||0||.214||258||433|
|New England Patriots||3||11||0||.214||258||358|
|Kansas City Chiefs||5||9||0||.357||282||341|
|San Diego Chargers||2||12||0||.143||189||345|
|y-St. Louis Cardinals||11||3||0||.786||356||276|
|New York Giants||5||9||0||.357||216||306|
|Green Bay Packers||4||10||0||.286||226||285|
|y-Los Angeles Rams||12||2||0||.857||312||135|
|San Francisco 49ers||5||9||0||.357||255||286|
|New Orleans Saints||2||12||0||.143||165||360|
- Baltimore finished ahead of Miami in the AFC East based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
- N.Y. Jets finished ahead of New England in the AFC East based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
- Minnesota was the top NFC playoff seed based on point rating system (Vikings were 1st in NFC in points scored and 2nd in NFC in points allowed for a combined rating of 3 while Rams were 5th in NFC in points scored and 1st in NFC in points allowed for a combined rating of 6).
- Chicago finished ahead of Green Bay in the NFC Central based on better division record (2–4 to Packers' 1–5).
|Divisional Playoffs||Conference Championship Games||Super Bowl X|
|December 28 – Metropolitan Stadium|
|4) Dallas Cowboys||17|
|January 4 – L.A. Memorial Coliseum|
|1) Minnesota Vikings||14|
|4) Dallas Cowboys||37|
|December 27 – L.A. Memorial Coliseum|
|2) Los Angeles Rams||7|
|3) St. Louis Cardinals||23|
|January 18 – Miami Orange Bowl|
|2) Los Angeles Rams||35|
|N4) Dallas Cowboys||17|
|December 28 – Oakland Coliseum|
|A1) Pittsburgh Steelers||21|
|4) Cincinnati Bengals||28|
|January 4 – Three Rivers Stadium|
|2) Oakland Raiders||10|
|December 27 – Three Rivers Stadium|
|1) Pittsburgh Steelers||16|
|3) Baltimore Colts||10|
*Pittsburgh (the AFC 1 seed) did not play Cincinnati (the 4 seed) in the Divisional playoff round because both teams were in the same division.
The 1975 NFL Draft was held from January 28 to 29, 1975 at New York City's Hilton at Rockefeller Center. With the first pick, the Atlanta Falcons selected quarterback Steve Bartkowski from the University of California.
American Football Conference
- Baltimore Colts: Ted Marchibroda
- Buffalo Bills: Lou Saban
- Cincinnati Bengals: Paul Brown
- Cleveland Browns: Forrest Gregg
- Denver Broncos: John Ralston
- Houston Oilers: Bum Phillips
- Miami Dolphins: Don Shula
- Kansas City Chiefs: Paul Wiggin
- New England Patriots: Chuck Fairbanks
- New York Jets: Charley Winner
- Oakland Raiders: John Madden
- Pittsburgh Steelers: Chuck Noll
- San Diego Chargers: Tommy Prothro
National Football Conference
- Atlanta Falcons: Marion Campbell
- Chicago Bears: Jack Pardee
- Dallas Cowboys: Tom Landry
- Detroit Lions: Rick Forzano
- Green Bay Packers: Bart Starr
- Los Angeles Rams: Ray Malavasi
- Minnesota Vikings: Bud Grant
- New Orleans Saints: John North (6 games) and Ernie Hefferle (8 games)
- New York Giants: Bill Arnsparger
- Philadelphia Eagles: Mike McCormack
- San Francisco 49ers: Dick Nolan
- St. Louis Cardinals: Don Coryell
- Washington Redskins: George Allen