Armen Terzian

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Armen Terzian (1915–1989) was an American-Armenian American football official in the National Football League (NFL) from 1961 to 1981. He was a field judge and wore uniform number 23, which was later worn by two African-American referees: Johnny Grier, and currently, Jerome Boger.

Terzian officiated an NFC Divisional Playoff game in December 1975 at Metropolitan Stadium between the Minnesota Vikings and the visiting Dallas Cowboys.[1] Following a late Hail Mary touchdown pass by the Cowboys to take the lead, an angry fan threw a whiskey bottle that hit Terzian in the forehead, rendering him momentarily unconscious.[2] He did not require stitches, but had to wear a large white bandage around his forehead for the final few seconds remaining in the game.[3][4]

The following season, he officiated Super Bowl XI, also a Vikings' loss.


  1. ^ Jenkins, Dan (January 5, 1976). "In on a wing and a prayer". Sports Illustrated. p. 8. 
  2. ^ "Bottle gashes officials forehead". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. December 29, 1975. p. 18. 
  3. ^ "NFL official struck on head by bottle". Chicago Tribune. UPI. December 29, 1975. p. 2, sec. 4. 
  4. ^ "Cowboys get their miracle". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. December 29, 1975. p. 1C. 

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