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Kansas City Chiefs (AFL) vs. Minnesota Vikings (NFL)

Kansas City Chiefs +12, O/U 39 (11-3) vs. Minnesota Vikings -12, O/U 39 (12-2) Tulane Stadium, New Orleans, Louisiana, January 11, 1970 3:30 p..m. EST, TV: CBS, Attendance: 80,562 Weather: 61 degrees, overcast, tornado watch

by Wilson of

The Vikings were definitely a defensive presence to be feared. Minnesota’s defensive squad was given the nickname “The Purple People Eaters” and for a good reason with guys like Alan Page, Jim Marshall, Gary Larsen, and Carl Eller crossing the trenches from the defensive line. The Viking’s secondary stoppers included Bobby Bryant, Earsell Macbee, and Paul Krause. The secondary combined that season for 19 interceptions and more than 200 yards in returns after the pick.

Offensively, the Vikings were led by QB Joe Kapp who was not your average, run of the mill, QB. Kapp had the ability to lead and he did it by including all of his teammates. He would not slide to safety when approached by a defensive tackler; rather he would lower the boom and try to plow right through guys. This technique earned him the title of “Indestructible” around the NFL.


The Chiefs managed to overcome an early season injury to QB Len Dawson (missed 6 games) and secured a playoff spot. Kansas City’s offense was led by QB Len Dawson as well as running back and former 1965 Heisman Trophy winner, Mike Garret, who was the Chief’s biggest producer and the number one weapon of choice. Garret rushed for over 700 yards that season but he also had 43 catches for over 400 yards.

KC’s defense led the AFL in fewest points allowed (177). The defensive line included Buck Buchanan, Curly Culp, Jerry Mays, and Aaron Brown. All Star linebacker Willie Lanier combined with defensive backs Emmitt Thomas and Johnny Robinson for 21 interceptions.

On paper, both of these teams looked to be a great matchup for Super Bowl IV.

Game Summary:

The Chiefs came into this game as 12 point dogs but they sure played like they were the favorite. However, Kansas City only scored 3 points on a 48-yard field goal by Jan Stenerud (Super Bowl record until SB, XXII) in the first quarter of play but it was enough to take the lead heading into the second quarter. The Vikings did not score in the first quarter, and it ended up 3-0 which surprised the fans.

Stenerud would go on to kick two more FGs while the Vikings had no answers. The score was now 9-0 in favor of the Chiefs. Mike Garret added a 5-yard TD run to make it 16-0 at halftime.

Minnesota finally got on the scoreboard in the third quarter with a Dave Osborn 4-yard run to make it 16-7. The Vikings were within reaching distance now and the fans were excited to have a game on their hands. But the Chiefs answered with another touchdown when Otis Taylor pulled in a 46-yard TD pass from QB Len Dawson to make it 23-7 after a Stenerud kick.

The score would stay the same for the rest of the game as the Vikings were shut down by the Chiefs. Even the “indestructible” Joe Kapp was helped off the field after being sacked.

Point Spread: Chiefs +12 Minnesota -12

Over/Under: 39

Final Score: Kansas City Chiefs 23, Minnesota Vikings 7

MVP: Len Dawson, QB Kansas City Chiefs

Primetime Players: Len Dawson, Jan Stenerud (3 FGs), entire KC defense

Head Coaches: Kansas City Chiefs: Hank Stram Minnesota Vikings: Bud Grant

Winner’s Bonus: $15,000

Loser’s Bonus: $7,500

Coin Toss: John McDonough (referee)

National Anthem: Al Hirt

Halftime Show: “Mardi Gras” with Carol Channing

30-Second Commercial: $78,000

Behind the Scenes Story:

Chiefs quarterback Len Dawson made headlines during the week prior to the Super Bowl game when his name was involved in a sports gambling federal investigation. Apparently a man named Donald Dawson was arrested for having more than $400,000 in cash on his person as well as having Len Dawson’s phone number on a slip of paper. Later it was proven that Len Dawson had no relation to Donald Dawson and the allegations and rumors dissipated.

Ironically, there was a planned hot air balloon race to take place before kick-off but a balloon marked “NFL” carrying a “Viking” raised into the air too early and never gained enough altitude and crashed in the end zone. This was certainly an omen for the Vikings especially considering their superbowl outcome.

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