Ten-year AFL patch

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The shoulder patch worn by the AFL's Kansas City Chiefs in the fourth AFL-NFL Championship game

The Ten-Year AFL Patch is a shoulder patch adapted for use on American Football League (AFL) team uniforms.

History[edit]

During the entire 1969 professional football season, all NFL players wore a shoulder patch on their uniforms, reading "50 NFL", marking the 50 years which had passed since the league's initial organization. American Football League fan Ange Coniglio[1] petitioned the AFL owners to have their players wear a patch commemorating the league's 10 years, especially since it was the AFL's final year. The AFL owners declined, in Lamar Hunt's words, because they felt that a patch would make the uniforms "too busy".

Coniglio enlisted the support of AFL President Milt Woodard and of AFL players. At his urging, the idea was also advanced by Jack Kemp in a request to Pete Rozelle. As reported in the Kansas City Chiefs' 2006 Press Guide, Woodard had a patch made to be used by whichever team won the final AFL Championship. It turned out that AFL founder Lamar Hunt's Chiefs would be in the final AFL-NFL World Championship Game, and Hunt agreed to have the Chiefs wear a ten-year AFL patch in Super Bowl IV.

Support[edit]

AFL Hall of Fame coach Hank Stram supported the idea and used the patch as a motivating factor for his team. Stram was later quoted as saying "You could not believe it when you saw the faces of the players. These were great men, and great pros, but they were like kids in a candy shop when they saw that patch." Years later, Chiefs linebacker Willie Lanier remarked "It lit us up. We knew what it meant." Wearing the AFL patch, the Chiefs went out and defeated the Vikings 23–7. Thus, the final record in the only series of Professional Football championship games to be played between the champions of two leagues was: NFL 2, AFL 2, proving for posterity that the unfairly maligned and visionary American Football League was the full equal of the established, conservative NFL.

References[edit]

  1. ^ MacCambridge, Michael (2012). Lamar Hunt: A Life in Sports. Kansas City: Andrews NcMeel Publishing. p. 206. ISBN 978-1-4494-2339-1. 

External links[edit]