Joe Namath’s place in football history is not limited to his fine record of 12 seasons with the New York Jets and one swan-song year at the end of his career with the Los Angeles Rams. Namath was also in the thick of the 1960s rivalry between the National and American Football Leagues.
Drafted by the NFL’s St. Louis Cardinals, Namath raised eyebrows when he signed with the AFL’s New York Jets, in no small part, one must assume, because of the then astronomical $400,000 contract he was offered. That, and his reputation as a ladies man, earned him the nickname Broadway Joe.
On the field, the former Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback, who played for legendary coach Bear Bryant, excelled in his first season, earning Rookie of the Year honors. In 1967, he became the first quarterback in any league the throw for more than 4,000 yards in a single season. But his greatest triumph came at the end of the 1968 season—in 1969, actually—when he delivered on his promise of a Jets victory over the NFL’s mighty Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III.
Namath’s idol, Johnny Unitas, was on the Colts bench until late in that game, but it was Namath’s 17 of 28 completions—which got Matt Snell close enough to score a touchdown and Jim Turner close enough to kick three field goals—that kept the pressure on the Colts. Namath was named the game’s Most Valuable Player and gave the AFL its first Super Bowl victory.
Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1985, Namath has long been a favorite of football-memorabilia collectors. Indeed, few vintage football cards are as iconic as his vertical, 1965 Topps rookie card.
The illustration of the young Namath, with an all-business expression on his face, floats on a bright yellow background—the words “NEW YORK” hover above his head like a Broadway marquee. In fact, all of Namath’s Topps cards from the 1960s are collectible, as are recent items, from signed jerseys and footballs to autographed photos.
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Joe Namath, Terry Bradshaw and — whether you like him or not –Tom Brady are football icons. They, along with their fellow Super Bowl MVPs, were honored at Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7. But as the league was paying tribute to these gridiron legends, some ...Read more
Super Bowl 50: What would Bear Bryant think of Cam Newton? Joe Namath has an ...AL.com, February 7th
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Watch Cam Newton, like Joe Namath, make a Super Bowl guaranteeWashington Post, February 6th
On Friday, Under Armour went public with a six-month-old piece of video in which Cam Newton makes a Joe Namath-like guarantee, promising a Super Bowl victory soon. No alcohol was involved in Newton's prediction, made in a speech to summer interns at ...Read more
Joe Namath 'pulling for' Johnny Manziel amid off-field trouble, thinks 'he has ...Newsday, February 5th
SAN FRANCISCO — Joe Namath flashed that Broadway Joe smile when he was told how old troubled quarterback Johnny Manziel is. “Damn,” he said when given the answer. “I remember one time I made a mistake when I was 23. Wait a minute, it might ...Read more
'Broadway Joe' makes brash promise but his Jets come through in Super Bowl IIIwhnt.com, February 3rd
They were modest numbers that followed one of the most famously brash promises in sports. Those were Joe Namath's passing numbers in Super Bowl III, the day in 1969 when he and the New York Jets upset the Baltimore Colts 16-7 and shocked the world...Read more
How Joe Namath set the stage for Cam NewtonUSA TODAY, January 31st
SAN FRANCISCO — No matter how brash Cam Newton's critics think he is, it will be impossible for the Carolina Panthers quarterback to outdo what Joe Namath did in 1969. And now there's fresh detail about what famously took place before Super Bowl III, ...Read more
50 Most Memorable Super Bowl Moments, No. 12: Joe Namath's guaranteeYahoo Sports, January 20th
It was the first to be preserved entirely on videotape. And, most important, it's also the launch of the engine that now keeps the NFL going all year long: the dramatic plot line. That's thanks to Joe Namath, who said three days before the game that...Read more
Joe Namath and the Jets shocked the Colts and world 47 years agoFOXSports.com, January 12th
Led by future Hall of Famer Joe Namath, the Jets were undoubtedly the best team in the AFL's watered-down East division in 1968, but even after beating the Oakland Raiders for the AFL Championship in a rematch of the infamous "Heidi" game, New York ...Read more