Kansas City Chiefs, professional football team and
one of four teams in the Western Division of the American
Football Conference (AFC) of the National Football
League (NFL). Originally formed as the Dallas Texans,
the Chiefs now play at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas
City, Missouri, and wear uniforms of red, gold, and
white. The team was named after Kansas City mayor
H. Roe “Chief” Bartle.
In 1959, a 26-year-old Texan, frustrated by his unsuccessful
attempts to gain a pro football franchise in the National
Football League, embarked on an alternate course that
was to drastically change the face of pro football
forever. The young man was Lamar Hunt, who founded
the American Football League that season and served
as the league's first president when its eight new
teams began play in 1960.During the 1960s the Chiefs
franchise were the only club to capture three American
Football League (AFL) championships. Coached by Hank
Stram, the team had one of the AFL’s most feared
defenses. Quarterback Len Dawson, a five-time passing
champion and future Hall of Fame member, led the offense.
During the early and mid-1990s head coach Marty Schottenheimer
directed the Chiefs to six consecutive playoff appearances.
His many stars included running back Marcus Allen,
kicker Nick Lowery, and quarterback Joe Montana.
The Dallas Texans became a charter member of the
AFL in 1960, and Hank Stram, an assistant at the University
of Miami, was hired as the team’s first head
coach. Two years later Stram produced a powerful offense
with quarterback Len Dawson, veteran running back
Abner Hayes, and rookie running back Curtis McClinton.
The three stars led the Texans to the AFL title in
1962. Dawson was named the player of the year, McClinton
rookie of the year, and Stram coach of the year.
Despite the team’s success in the AFL, the
club suffered economically because of poor fan support,
and in 1963 the franchise moved to Kansas City and
was renamed the Chiefs. Kansas City won its second
AFL title in 1966 behind wide receiver Otis Taylor;
running back Mike Garrett, who was named the league’s
top rookie; and kicker Mike Mercer, who made four
field goals in the AFL Championship Game. In winning
the AFL crown, the Chiefs earned the right to play
the NFL-champion Green Bay Packers in the first Super
Bowl. Kansas City lost the game 35-10.
Stram guided his team to a league-record third AFL
title in the 1969 season. The club’s standouts
included tackle Buck Buchanan and linebackers Bobby
Bell and Willie Lanier, all future Hall of Fame members.
The offense starred Dawson, tight end Fred Arbanas,
kicker Jan Stenerud, and offensive linemen Ed Budde
and Jim Tyrer. The Chiefs upset the heavily favored
Minnesota Vikings 23-7 in the Super Bowl.
Kansas City joined the NFL in 1970 when the NFL and
AFL completed their merger. In 1971 Stram led the
Chiefs to the AFC Western Division title in their
second year in the league. That year, in a double-overtime
divisional playoff game on Christmas Day, the Miami
Dolphins defeated Kansas City in the longest game
in NFL history. It lasted 82 minutes 40 seconds.
The Chiefs suffered a 14-season playoff drought from
1972 to 1985, finishing as high as second place only
twice. In 1986 Kansas City returned to the playoffs
with a strong defense that included safety Deron Cherry,
who topped the AFC in interceptions in 1985 and 1986.
In 1990 second-year head coach Marty Schottenheimer
guided the Chiefs to the first of six consecutive
trips to the playoffs. The club brought together veteran
superstars Marcus Allen and Joe Montana in 1993. That
year Kansas City won its first division crown since
1971. Throughout the mid- and late 1990s, the Chiefs
remained one of the AFC’s tougher teams.
1967 Super Bowl I Lost to Green Bay Packers, 35-10
1970 Super Bowl IV Defeated Minnesota Vikings, 23-7.
Club Records >>
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