Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Jets and Colts--Yesterday and Today
It's been 41 years since the N.Y. Jets pulled off the biggest upset in NFL history when they beat the Baltimore Colts in Super Bow III, 16-7. Over four decades later, the two teams will play again in a major playoff game, the AFC Conference championship this Sunday in Indianapolis.
There are several similarities/coincidences between the two clubs, from then and now: The Colts had the veteran and All-Pro quarterback Johnny Unitas, backed up by Earl Morrell. Now they have the same in Peyton Manning. The Jets had the young, brash quarterback Joe Willie Namath. Now they have the young and confident rookie Mark Sanchez.
The Colts were the dominant team in the NFL during that era. This season's Colts had a chance to go undefeated but chose to rest their starters after clinching home-field advantage. The Jets under Coach Weeb Ewbank, were leaders of the upstart American Football League.
The modern-era Colts don't have much of a running attack. Neither did the Baltimore Colts in 1969. Tom Matte was their leading ball carrier, a slow-footed converted quarterback. The Jets, on the other hand, had a stellar running game that was led by Emerson Boozer and Matt Snell. This season's New York team has one of the best rushing attacks in the league.
Namath also had two splendid receivers to throw to--Don Maynard, who was the team's lone holdover from the original New York Titans, and also the sure-handed Texan George Sauer.
The game in 1969 was played on a neutral field, in the Orange Bowl at Miami. Sunday's game will be played in the Colts' stadium, and that may be the difference in the game.

No comments:

Post a Comment