1969 Super Bowl III New York Jets Championship
Super Bowl III was the third AFL–NFL Championship Game in professional American football, and the first to officially bear the trademark name “Super Bowl”. Played on January 12, 1969, at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida, the game is regarded as one of the greatest upsets in both American football history and in the recorded history of sports. The 18-point underdog American Football League (AFL) champion New York Jets defeated the National Football League (NFL) champion Baltimore Colts by a score of 16–7.
This was the first Super Bowl victory for the AFL. Before the game, most sports writers and fans believed that AFL teams were less talented than NFL clubs, and expected the Colts to defeat the Jets by a wide margin. Baltimore posted a 13–1 record in the regular season and shut out the Cleveland Browns 34–0 in the NFL Championship Game. The Jets were 11–3 in the regular season, and defeated the Oakland Raiders 27–23 in the AFL Championship Game.
Jets quarterback Joe Namath famously made an appearance three days before the Super Bowl at the Miami Touchdown Club and personally guaranteed his team’s victory. His team backed up his words by controlling most of the game, building a 16–0 lead by the fourth quarter off of a touchdown run by Matt Snell and three field goals by Jim Turner. Colts quarterback Earl Morrall threw three interceptions before being replaced by Johnny Unitas, who then led Baltimore to its only touchdown, during the last few minutes of the game. With the victory, the Jets were the only winning team to score only one touchdown (either offensive, defensive, or special teams) until the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII. Namath, who completed 17 out of 28 passes for 206 yards, was named as the Super Bowl’s most valuable player, making him the first player in Super Bowl history to be declared MVP without personally scoring or throwing for a touchdown.