American Football History

Ask questions here about the history and records of American football, both college and professional.

29,857 Questions
Inventions
Football - Soccer
American Football History

Who invented the game called football?

All forms of football including American football, Canadian football, Australian rules football, Gaelic football, Association football (soccer), Rugby Union and Rugby League football can be traced back hundreds of years to a ball game known as "Shrovetide football". The word "football" is from the English language and from early medieval times the term "fote-ball" (first recorded c.1400) was used to describe a 'ball game played on foot' not necessarily with the foot. Early football games were not only played by the English but also by other European peoples groups under different names with localised innovations. Other forms include Irish "Caid" meaning 'Ball' the ancestor of Gaelic football, Cornish Hurling "Hyrl�®an", Welsh Hurling "Cnapan", "Knattleikr" a Viking ball game. A game called "La Soule" meaning 'The Ball' was played in France, "Ba" pronounced baw meaning 'Ball' played in Scotland and "Ball play" or "Playing at ball" or significantly "fote-ball" games played in England. These medieval ball games are the ones from which all modern football codes evolved and the Shrovetide ball game referred to as "fote-ball" is the version from which all modern football games take their name. These games may have evolved from a game played by the Romans called "Harpastum" which itself was an adaptation of an Ancient Greek game called "Episkyros" or "Phaininda" which, dating back to at least the 4th century BC, is the Worlds oldest known ball game that matches the medieval definition of football. It is worth noting that Harpastum was later recreated in 16th centaury Italy as "Calcio". Although there is a strong possibility the Roman and Greek ball games evolved into Shrovetide football and other similar ball games played in Europe as yet there are no verifiable connections. The Ancient Chinese also played a game called "Cuju" that dates back to the late 3rd centaury BC which has similarities to Association football. However, despite attempts by FIFA to infer an historical link between Cuju and Association Football there are no connections between Cuju and early ball games played in medieval Europe.

Throughout history, people have played sports which involved using a ball and hands, feet, or sticks. Each area had its own rules. so there was no global definition of any sport.

In the 1300s, the king of England, Edward III, banned football, hockey, and handball. This shows a difference between sports using the feet, hands and sticks. So comes the argument that football was traditionally played using the feet and not the hands. However FIFA acknowledges Association Football (soccer)'s earliest drafts demonstrate 'handling' (possibly similar to Gaelic/Australian Rules) was acceptable, and hands appear to be involved in the earliest lithographic sketches of 'mob football' games such as Shrove-tide.

None of the modern codes of 'football' seem to have diverged formally from the various 'mob-footballs' until the 1800s.

In 1863,at Cambridge University, a group of Englishmen formed the Football Association and invented the modern game of soccer.

Many other "codes" of football were invented around this time. Rugby and Australian rules (earliest known draft, Melbourne 1858) were among the first to establish clear drafted rules. In North America, rugby and soccer were both played, and a hybrid, American football, was invented.

All sports using the term football have words placed in front such as Association (der.- Soccer), Rugby, American or Aussie Rules (Australian) or Gaelic (Irish) to differentiate them from each other. Typically they are individually and simply referred to as 'football' within the context in which they are the dominant code.

Answer

Willie Tidwell invented American football. He was a really good player in the day. Willie and Walter Camp both made up the rules for Gridiron. They got it from rugby and football. They took the hitting and other activities from rugby. Soccer uses the foot, and Tidwell and Camp both thought it would be good to have goal post for kicking field goals worth three points.

Answer

There are many possible places and times when American football might have been created. However, the most commonly accepted answer is in 1869, when Rutgers and Princeton had the "first" game. Of course, there had been others played before then, but this game was the first time that the game had a name. As for who created it, American football is derived almost directly from rugby, though there are many people who could be credited with the creation of many of the rules that are used today.

The word 'football' is from the English language and was originally spelt as 'foot ball'. When the term 'foot ball' was first used in medieval England it described 'a ball game played on foot' known as mob football or Shrovetide football in which more running with the ball was required than kicking the ball. These ball games had earlier descriptions such as 'playing at ball' and there were similar if not identical ball games being played in other countries at the same time. These games include 'Hurling' played in Wales & Cornwall and 'La Soule' or 'Choule' played in the north of France. However, mob football or Shrovetide football was the first ball game to be specifically referred to as 'foot ball'. I have created the link 'Shrovetide football' from the BBC which provides an insight into how the game is played showing photos of the Up'ards and Down'ards 'mob' playing the game.

These Shrovetide games evolved into other forms of football notably Rugby football which was said to have been started by a pupil at Rugby school called William Webb Ellis in 1823. The Rugby Union Football world cup is called the "Webb Ellis Trophy" after him. The rules of early Rugby contributed too many other codes of football in England and other English speaking countries during the 19th century. American football is one of these games. It could be argued that American football is a purer form of football than say Association football (soccer) or Australian Rules football because like Rugby is retains more of the original medieval characteristics.

Another Alternate Answer

Soccer was invented by the Chinese over a thousand years ago, it was re-invented and codified by Britain, who is known as "the home of football." Goal posts with nets were introduced in the very late 1800s.

Football started as a form of Rugby. Walter Camp is credited with being " The father of American Football" by implementing various rule changes.

American football is created from Rugby (English sport) and soccer is actually the real football(or as it is known around the world) Football was created by the English.

Simple Alternate Answer

The Chinese invented playing with a soccer ball and goals but in a very different style. The ball was made from blubber from the inner intestate of frogs and other animals. They would have a certain number of small goals or holes used as goals to score in. Later as dynasties changed they would use the soccer ball to play volleyball style soccer, and technique and juggling became a fashion as opposed to playing and scoring.

Britain later adapted but more over invented the official game of football.

They changed the style and rules up with 1 goal and 2 post thus inventing the game of football, futbol, or known in US as soccer.

The first Major league was started by the Scottish called the Scottish Premier League

Historically correct Answer

The word "football" is an English term which in early medieval times was spelt "fote-ball" (first recorded c.1400) to describe a 'ball game played on foot'. Early football games were not only played by the English but also by other European peoples under different names with localized innovations. Other forms include Irish "Caid" meaning 'Ball' the ancestor of Gaelic football, Cornish Hurling "Hyrl�®an", Welsh Hurling "Cnapan". A game called "La Soule" meaning 'The Ball' was played in France, "Ba" pronounced bawmeaning 'Ball' played in Scotland and "Ball play" or "Playing at ball" or significantly "fote-ball" games played in England. These medieval ball games are the ones from which all modern football codes evolved and the Shrovetide ball game referred to as "fote-ball" is the version from which all modern football games take their name. These games may have evolved from a game played by the Romans called "Harpastum" which itself was an adaptation of an Ancient Greek game called "Episkyros" or "Phaininda" which, dating back to at least the 4th century BC, is the Worlds oldest known ball game that matches the medieval definition of football. It is worth noting that Harpastum was later recreated in 16th centaury Italy as "Calcio". Although there is a strong possibility the Roman and Greek ball games evolved into Shrovetide football and other similar ball games played in Europe as yet there are no verifiable connections. Dispite the lack of evidence it should be noted it is recorded that in Florence 59BC a game of Harpastum was played between Eipiphany and Lent the last day "Shrove Tuesday" the exact day on which Shrovetide football is still played in Derbyshire England. It should also be noted that Harpastum was taken to the Roman province of Britannia (modern day Britain) where it is recorded in 217AD that a game took place between the Romans and the native Britons. The Ancient Chinese also played a game called "Cuju" that dates back to the late 3rd centaury BC which has similarities to Association football. However, despite attempts by FIFA to infer an historical link between Cuju and Association Football there are no connections between Cuju and early ball games played in medieval Europe.

When discussing football it is a common mistake that football is the same subject as Soccer. This is incorrect. There are many forms of football of which "Soccer" or "Association Football" is just one code. Other popular codes include American football (Gridiron), Canadian football, Australian rules football, Gaelic football, Rugby Union football and Rugby league football. Some of these codes took ideas from previous codes. American football is a mix of Soccer, Rugby and ideas created in the USA in particular the forward pass. Canadian football is based on Rugby whilst Australian rules football and Gaelic football both draw ideas from Rugby, Soccer and in particular the medieval Shrovetide game Caid played in Ireland. Association football or Soccer was a product of English Public schools who had played football by various rules for centuries. Then in 1848 Cambridge University attempted to create a standard set of rules for Public schools. Two former students of Shrewsbury School Mr. H. de Winton and Mr. J.C. Thring organized a meeting at Trinity College, Cambridge with 12 representatives from other schools namely Eton, Harrow, Rugby, Winchester and Shrewsbury. In the eight hour meeting these men created what became the 'blue print' for Soccer. These rules became known as the "Cambridge Rules" which unlike "Rugby School Rules" (1823) favours a game in which the ball would be kicked more than carried. In 1863 a solicitor from Hull called Ebenezer Cobb Morley wrote an article for Bell's Life newspaper promoting the idea of a new regulatory body for football. This led to the formation of the "Football Association" whose main aim was to standardise the rules of football nationally. This new code was to be based on the Cambridge Rules. The 'Laws of the game' for Soccer or Association football were drafted by E. C. Morley along with other founder members of the Football Association. They agreed the rules at a public house called the Freemasons Tavern in London on 26th October 1863. Morley became the Football Associations first secretary. He also founded the Barnes Football Club in 1862 which he captained against Richmond football club in the first ever soccer match. The game ended 0-0 but in a return game he scored the first ever goal. He died in 1924 and is buried at a Cemetery on Barnes Common not far from where he drafted the Laws of the game at 26 The Terrace, Barnes, London. A blue plaque commemorating his life's work was placed on the wall of this address by English Heritage in 2009.

Entomology of the word soccer: The word soccer is a phonetic abbreviation of the word 'Association' coined by English public school students who took the 'soc' from 'Association' and put an 'er' on the end. That is why prior to 1863 the word soccer did not exist. It is probably worth noting the same students called Rugby football 'Rugger' but this word fell out of use.

Research Observations

When I first heard FIFA's claim soccer originated in China I was intrigued by the idea. Like many others I believed what FIFA said must be true. As a football fan I was keen to read the evidence they hand uncovered. I already knew that Association Football, American Football, Rugby Union Football, Rugby League Football, Australian Rules football and Gaelic football all evolved from medieval ball games played Europe, but prior to this I had no idea where football came from. I decided to read up on this new FIFA discovery.

One problem I encountered straight away was that when looking for this proof FIFA claimed to have uncovered I could not find any! I then discovered FIFA had only put together a hypothesis that the British community who lived in China during the 19th centaury had taken Cuju back to England where it was used as a basis for Association Football. FIFA found no evidence to back up this colonialist idea and the more they looked the more they discovered their idea had no basis in fact, yet they still clamed "scientific evidence".

I decided to take a look at this so called 'scientific evidence'. What I found was a cleverly worded opinion by a self appointed FIFA authority who implied there was a scientific connection between Cuju and Soccer and who wrote in a way that any casual reader would be seduced into thinking they were reading proof when in fact they were reading theory.

Around the same time it became clear FIFA were aggressively pushing the sale of their football product in China. That is when the alarm bells started to ring and I realised there might be an ulterior motive to why FIFA were going to so much trouble. It should be noted that the Football Association in England who are promoting their Premiership product in China were happy to capitulate with FIFA accepting as a gift a Chinese picture of a Cuju player whilst smiling for the cameras.

Meanwhile back in the real world, despite anything FIFA have said the rules of Association Football remain a reworked version of Cambridge Rules Football which themselves were a hybrid of many games which had been played in English and some Irish public schools for hundreds of years. That is a verifiable and unchanged.

Later on I read an article where the FIFA President clamed Cuju spread from China to the Roman Empire. Clearly being unable to connect Cuju directly to Soccer through British colonialist FIFA had changed their story. I looked for the evidence to support this new claim. The Roman ball in question is called Harpastum. What I discovered is that Harpastum was the Romanised version of an Ancient Greek football game called Phaininda or Episkyros played as early as 2000 BC some 1300 - 1700 years before Cuju is appeared in China.

Incredibly it would seem FIFA were trying to change known European history by substituting the Greek game of Episkyros with the Chinese game of Cuju. I conclude FIFA's claim that football originated in China literally does not add up in time frame or otherwise. I believe this theory has now been abandoned by FIFA, although the importance of the Greek and Roman contribution to all forms of modern football is still played down by them.

I have looked at Cuju and there in no doubt the game agrees with the definition of a foot ball game. However, short of FIFA providing evidence there is a connection with Cuju and the foot ball games played in medieval Europe, the only possible conclusion is that Cuju developed in south east Asia free of outside influence and as such has to be viewed as a sport in it's own right which from first principles developed independently.

After this I decided to start researching the origins of medieval ball games played in Europe which are known to have collectively contributed to the evolution of football. I wanted to find out if medieval foot ball games could be connected to the Roman game Harpastum.

The games I researched were the ball game played in Northern French known as La Soule "The Ball", Mob football played in England, Cornish Hurling, Welsh Hurling, Gaelic football, Irish Hurling and Shrovetide football which was played in many European countries in medieval times. All these games have similar rules (if any rules) two teams, two goals (such as they were) and were played within a defined area.

All these games have similarities to Harpastum but the one that stands our above the rest is Cornish Hurling. It is now my belief that the Roman games Harpastum and Cornish Hurling (Hyrl�®an in Cornish Celtic) are one and the same game. The game of Hurling is of Celtic origin and the Cornish are descendants of the Romano-Britons who are known to have played Harpastum.

The rules of Harpastum are ambiguous but what we do know from the concepts used include a small hard ball, two goals (such as they were), two teams. Cornish Hurling also uses small hard ball, two goals, two teams and virtually no rules which might account for the reason detailed rules of Harpastum have not survived.

Harpastum and Cornish Hurling were/are also played on public holidays notably days of Christian importance such as Shrovetide. And it was of course the Romans who converted the Romano-Britons to Christianity which also ties in.

I accept that this theory does not provide absolute proof of a connection between Harpastum and Cornish Hurling. Due to very few first millennium AD documents surviving it is unlikely definitive proof exist. However, when you take an overall view on this I have identified decedents of Romano-Britons who live in the right place, who Cary on traditions from generation to generation, playing a similar ball game to the Romans, using a similar small hard ball as the Romans, with the same disregard for safety as the Romans and who are celebrating Christian festivals in a way the Romans did. I would liken this to what Douglas Adams once said "If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands". At the very least there is a tangible theory here which connects Harpastum with modern day forms of football which is more than can be for Cuju.

I will leave it there for you to decide for yourself. We know Cornish Hurling was one of the similar medieval ball games which contributed to the creation of early Rugby games. Some of the codes and concepts introduced by Rugby and other public schools in England would later be used to create Cambridge Rules football, American Football, Association Football (soccer) and Australian Rules football.

Gaelic Football is much older that the aforementioned games and is one of the family of medieval ball game which evolved independently of Rugby although is should be noted is connected from medieval times and contributed to the rules of Australian Rules Football which also draw upon the rules of Association Football. So when UEFA placed an image of a Greek Episkyros player taken on the European Cup there were right to do so because all the evidence points to football originating in Ancient Greece 4000 years ago.

Gridiron football, not futbol or soccer, first documented football game was played at the University of Toronto on the present site of University College 400 yards west of Queen's Park on November 9, 1861. One of the participants in the game involving University of Toronto students was Sir William Mulock, later it's Chancellor. It has been modernized ever since.
The man that is credited with inventing football is Walter Camp.

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Football - American
American Football History
Football Rules and Regulations
Football Field Measurements

What are the names of all of the positions in American football?

Hehejd

867868869
Football - American
American Football History
Super Bowl

When was Super Bowl XLV played in 2011?

The 2011 Super Bowl XLV (45) was played on Sunday February 6, 2011 at 6 PM EST, at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The Green Bay Packers beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, 31-25, to win their fourth Super Bowl.

Super Bowl XLV was played on Sunday, February 6, 2011, at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in the contest, 31-25.

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American Football History
National Football League (NFL)

Which NFL team is the most violent?

Oakland Raiders.

All NFL Teams are Violent , The NFC EAST division is the toughest division because all the teams in that divison Hate each other. The Dallas Cowboys,Washington redskins,Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants bang each other all season.

but some teams were so violent that they had nick names

Dallas Cowboys-Doomsday

Pittsburgh Steelers-Steel Curtain

Minnesota Vikings-Purple People Eaters

Washington Redskins-National Defense

Baltimore Ravens and Chicago Bears were so nasty that they didnt need a nickname

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Football - American
Football - Soccer
American Football History
Soccer History

When was association football invented?

The English Football Association created the first widely accepted official rules of the game in 1863, dubbing the game association football. These rules were known as the "Laws of the Game."

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Super Bowl
Pittsburgh Steelers
American Football History

How many Super Bowl championships do the Pittsburgh Steelers have?

Through Super Bowl XLVIII, the Pittsburgh Steelers have won 6 of 8 Super Bowls, as follows:

Won SB IX, X, XIII, XIV, XL, and XLIII (9, 10, 13, 14 40 and 43) defeating in order, the Minnesota Vikings, Dallas Cowboys, Dallas Cowboys again, Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, and Arizona Cardinals.

Lost SB XXX to the Dallas Cowboys (it was the first time that the Cowboys beat the Steelers in a game that counted ~ the Cowboys had previously beaten the Steelers only in a preseason game). Lost SB XLV to the Green Bay Packers.

They won their titles during the following seasons:

  • 1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 2005, 2008.
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American Football History
Super Bowl

What's your favorite moment in Super Bowl history?

There’s plenty, but as a jilted Rams fan, I’ve gotta go with The Tackle at Super Bowl XXXIV. So often, games end in crushing fashion—you think you have it won, but as the clock ticks down and the opposing team drives closer to your endzone, your dreams deflate and eventually get stomped on, stamped out, covered in the enemy’s confetti. This time, though, we HELD ON—Rams linebacker Mike Jones stopped Titans receiver Kevin Dyson one yard short of the endzone on the last play of the game, taking our dreams off the turf and holding them high with the Lombardi Trophy. Sucked for Titans fans, their dreams getting stomped on and all, but hey, that’s sports.

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Football - American
American Football History

What is the average height and weight of an NFL football player?

It depends on the position of the player.

According to a 2006 ESPN article, "The average weight in the NFL has grown by 10 percent since 1985 to a current average of 248 pounds. The heaviest position, offensive tackle, went from 281 pounds two decades ago to 318 pounds."

Most pro football players are over 6 feet tall. Some kickers can be shorter however.

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Football - American
American Football History
National Football League (NFL)

What is the highest scoring NFL game ever?

Highest Scoring NFL GameEver:

With a combined score of 113, the NFL game with the highest ever combined score was played in regular season between the Washington Redskins and the New York Giants on November 27, 1966. The Redskins won 72-41.

Other high scoring games:

  • Highest scoring game (during playoffs): 96 points when the Arizona Cardinals beat the Green Bay Packers 51-45 on January 10, 2010.
  • Highest score by one team (during playoffs): 73 points when the Chicago Bears beat the Washington Redskins 73-0 on December 8, 1940.
358359360
Football - American
Denver Broncos
American Football History
Super Bowl

When have the Denver Broncos won back to back Super Bowls?

That was Super Bowls XXXII and XXXIII, the 1997 and 1998 seasons.
The Denver Broncos have gone to six Super Bowls. They lost four and won two.


In the 1977 season the Broncos attended Super Bowl XII and played the Dallas Cowboys but lost by a score of 27-10.

In the 1986 season, the Broncos attended Super Bowl XXI and played the New York Giants but lost by a score of 39-20.

In the 1987 season, the Broncos attended Super Bowl XXII and played the Washington Redskins, but lost by a score of 42-10.

In the 1989 season, the Broncos attended Super Bowl XXIV and played the San Francisco 49ers, but lost by a score of 55-10.

In the 1997 season, the Broncos attended Super Bowl XXXII and played the Green Bay Packers, and won by a score of 31-24.

In the 1998 season, the Broncos attended Super Bowl XXIII and played the Atlanta Falcons, and won by a score of 34-19.

351352353
Sports
American Football History
Athletes

Who is Ed O'Bradovich?

Edward O'Bradovich (born May 21, 1940 in Melrose Park, Illinois) is a former American football defensive end in the NFL. Drafted by the Chicago Bears in the seventh round (91st pick) of the 1962 NFL Draft, he spent his entire ten-year career with the Bears. He attended Proviso East High School in Maywood, Illinois and the University of Illinois. He currently co-hosts the "Jiffy Lube Post Game Show" after Bears games, alongside former Bear Doug Buffone on WSCR in Chicago. He currently lives in Palatine, IL. O'Bradovich played himself in the television movies Brian's Song, starring James Caan as Brian Piccolo, and Coach of the Year, starring Robert Conrad as former Chicago Bears player Jim Brandon

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Dallas Cowboys
American Football History
Super Bowl

How many Super Bowls have the Dallas Cowboys won?

The Cowboys have played in eight Super Bowls and won five times (victories in bold):

  • Super Bowl V (1-17-71) -- Baltimore Colts 16, Dallas 13.
  • Super Bowl VI (1-16-72) -- Dallas 24, Miami Dolphins 3.
  • Super Bowl X (1-18-76) -- Pittsburgh Steelers 21, Dallas 17.
  • Super Bowl XII (1-15-78) -- Dallas 27, Denver Broncos 10.
  • Super Bowl XIII (1-21-79) -- Pittsburgh 35, Dallas 31.
  • Super Bowl XXVII (1-31-93) -- Dallas 52, Buffalo Bills17.
  • Super Bowl XXVIII (1-30-94) -- Dallas 30, Buffalo 13.
  • Super Bowl XXX (1-28-96) -- Dallas 27, Pittsburgh 17.
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Pittsburgh Steelers
American Football History
Super Bowl

How many Super Bowls have the Pittsburgh Steelers played in?

The Pittsburgh Steelers have played in eight Super Bowls.

  • Winning 6: IX, X, XIII, XIV, XL, XLIII
  • Losing 2: XXX, XLV
300301302
Football - American
American Football History
National Football League (NFL)

What NFL team has injured the most Starting Quarterbacks?

New york giants

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Football - American
American Football History

What helmets do NFL players use?

the official helmet company of the NFL is Riddell, so most players in the NFL wear those, because in order to wear any other helmet the players have to have the name of the company taken off the helmet.

ive noticed that most players wear the Revolution Speed by Riddell. its the best helmet that Riddell produces. ive only seen two other players wearing a helmet by another company although im sure there are more, Chad Ochocinco and Justin Tuck both wear the Ion 4D by Schutt which is the best helmet made to this point.

307308309
Football - American
American Football History
Super Bowl

Where is the Super Bowl location for 2015?

Arizona

285286287
Football - American
St. Louis Rams
American Football History
Athletes

How long did Jerome Bettis play for the Rams?

3 seasons ... 1993-1995.

295296297
Green Bay Packers
American Football History
Super Bowl

What years did the Packers win the Super Bowl?

AnswerThe Packers have won four Super Bowls:

1) Super Bowl I played January 15, 1967.

2) Super Bowl II played January 14, 1968.

3) Super Bowl XXXI played January 26, 1997.

4) Super Bowl XLV played February 6, 2011
4 times- SB1, SB2, SB31, and SB45.

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Football - American
American Football History

What is the highest NFL football fine in history?

The max fine in the NFL is $500,000. New England Patriots were fined $500,000 for spying on an opponent's defensive signals.

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Football - American
American Football History
Decade - 1920s

What was football like in the 1920's?

It was impeccably dangerous due to the helmets inability to work up to proper standards that at which they needed to meet.

Also, for other links that pertain to this question...

http://alliance.ed.uiuc.edu/cdrom/hononegah/sports_folder/changes.htm

http://dm12700.wordpress.com/football-in-the-1920s/

(To improve the former answer, that was previously given.)

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Football - American
American Football History
Super Bowl

Does Marshall Faulk have a super bowl ring?

Yes.

291292293
Philadelphia Eagles
American Football History
Super Bowl

Have the eagles ever won a Super Bowl?

No the eagles have never won a super bowl

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American Football History
National Football League (NFL)

What Rookie NFL QB has thrown the most touchdown passes in one season and how many was it?

Peyton Manning of the 1998 Indianapolis Colts and Russell Wilson of the 2012 Seattle Seahawks with 26 TD passes.

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Football - American
American Football History
South Australia

Why is American football called football?

Although what Americans call "soccer" and the rest of the world calls "football" consists of almost all players using their feet to play the game, Americans decided to use the name ''football'' for another sport (What other countries call American Football). Some feel that this is incorrect and that the sport doesn't fit the name since probably 90-95% of the time the "football" doesn't touch any of the players feet. But it should be understood by all that there are no rules or laws of the world saying that a sport must be called by a name that the majority of the world uses, and it should also be understood that although the ball might not "touch" a players foot for most of the game, feet are being used for much of the game, including running, kicking, and scoring.

For example, to get the ball to the other end of the field and to the goal a player must run, stumble, hop, and trample among other things to get over and through the opposing sides teammates. No matter how much passing (or throwing as some would call it) is involved, there has been no known game where passes were thrown through the entire duration of the game and not anyone had to use their feet at all to gain progress. It is basically impossible to throw the whole distance of the football field through the entire game to gain points (for both teams). There has also been no known game where, again, through an entire duration players floated, hovered, crawled, walked on their hands or did anything of the sort to gain progress and to gain each and every point. They had/have to use their feet no matter which way they are trying to score. Although there is passing, sometimes it is misconstrued by those who don't completely understand the sport, that that isn't all there is (There is also a thing called the ''run game'').

So, although Americans may not have gone with what seemed to be the easier and more popular route of naming the two sports (soccer=football, football=pass ball, or throw ball, or catch ball to some) that does not mean it is wrong, or that it doesn't make sense, or that the name should be changed because it doesn't fit in with the entire world.

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It's a reflection of the game's origins. The first football-type games played on U.S. college campuses were kicking-oriented sports like soccer. But every school had its own rules. It wasn't until the 1870s that the schools convened to agree on a standardized set of rules -- which, at Harvard's prodding, were based on the English rugby code. Rugby, of course, is really "rugby football." And since everyone had already been calling it football, the name stuck -- although it could just as easily at that point have become known as American rugby.

Kicking was a much more prominent part of the game in the early days than it is now, too. Before the forward pass was legalized, teams attempted more field goals, and punting was considered a primary defensive strategy for a team whose running game was bogging down.

Also

The word 'football' is from the English language and was originally spelled as 'foot ball'. When the term 'foot ball' was first used in medieval England it described 'a ball game played on foot' known as mob football or Shrovetide football in which more running with the ball was required than kicking the ball. These ball games had earlier descriptions such as 'playing at ball' and there were similar if not identical ball games being played in other countries at the same time. These games include 'Hurling' played in Wales & Cornwall and 'La Soule' or 'Choule' played in the north of France. However, mob football or Shrovetide football was the first ball game to be specifically referred to as 'foot ball'. I have created the link 'Shrovetide football' from the BBC which provides an insight into how the game is played showing photos of the Up'ards and Down'ards 'mob' playing the game.

These Shrovetide games evolved into other forms of football notably Rugby football which was said to have been started by a pupil at Rugby school called William Webb Ellis in 1823. The Rugby Union Football world cup is called the "Webb Ellis Trophy" after him. The rules of early Rugby contributed too many other codes of football in England and other English speaking countries during the 19th centaury. American football is one of these games. It could be argued that American football is a purer form of football than say Association football (soccer) or Australian Rules football because like Rugby is retains more of the original medieval characteristics.

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Some might say, simply, "because they kick the football." But the real story is deeper. The origin of Gridiron (American football) is in the history of the world's most popular sport: Football (soccer). When soccer -- more universally known as "football" (which of course makes sense because football players use their feet) -- players decided to change their centuries-old game with restrictions such as the no-use-of-hands rules, people who disliked this broke away to create rugby. The US version of the game under the same old name "football" (Gridiron) has more of a rugby style, the whole time forgetting why it was called that.

* Gridiron (American football) is a derivative of rugby football, and while the feet are used more often in rugby than on the gridiron, much of the game is still played by handling the ball. Both variations are still considered football.

* North America style Gridiron (American football) did not originally use the "forward pass" and much more of the play involved footwork, such as the "drop kick" and the running punt kick. In the first rules, only the " side pass" was allowed, as long as the two players were side by side, with no forward motion of the ball, similar to rugby rules. The Canadian Football League ( CFL ) still allows a drop kick to score a field goal, and also has a thing called a "safety" when the kicker is able to kick the ball through the end zone, so it lands out of play. Both the NFL and the CFL still have the drop-kick available as a weapon - on the point-after-touchdown, or from the field for 3 points. The "safety" is worth a single point in Canada. The Canadian game also features the ability, on fumbles, to kick the ball, but not on incomplete passes. It also features a 'touch back' which is a tackle in the end-zone, which is worth two points (called a safety in US football

* The global name for football (soccer) is of course football. The global name for American football is Gridiron. Gridiron is a type of handball and not football. Football is a sport where players control the ball with their feet and only football (soccer) does this. Gridiron is where hands are used to control a ball. Football has been played for many centuries but had no official rules. The British created rules for football in 1848. After that many codes of handball arose including rugger and gridiron, none of which are codes of football.

* It's a reflection of American football's origins. The first football type of game that colleges played in North America was almost identical to what became soccer: You scored by kicking a goal. But every school had its own rules. That was true even over in England, before the Football Association was created to establish a standard set of rules. Over here in the USA, we had no such governing body, so the schools took it upon themselves to sit down and draw up their own set of rules that everyone could agree on.

In an age when overseas communications took weeks, if not months, Americans lived in relative isolation from their football counterparts in Europe and thus weren't able to easily keep tabs on how the game was progressing there. So Americans (and Canadians) took it upon themselves to sort things out on their own and draw up a set of rules that appealed to them. Although most schools in North America were playing some variety of soccer, others, including Harvard, preferred a game that was more like rugby. When the schools first met to discuss a set of rules, Harvard pressed to base their common rules on the English rugby code, and they prevailed. From that point on, the American version of football began to develop out of rugby instead of soccer.

The same process of codifying rules had happened in England, too: After the Football Association was formed, some clubs disagreed over which rules to use -- primarily, the rule that governed the use of hands in the game. Those who favored prohibiting the hands formed the Football Association, and those who wanted to use the hands as part of the game eventually went on to form the first Rugby Football Union.

The American game could just as easily have been called American rugby, but since everyone was already calling it "football," the name stuck. Besides, in the early days, the American game was much more kicking-oriented than it is now. When there was no forward pass and kicks could be taken from anywhere on the field, teams would frequently dropkick to try to score, or they'd use a deep punt as a defensive strategy, if their running game was getting bogged down. It was only when the forward pass was legalized and kicks were limited to those taken from behind the line of scrimmage that the feet began to play a less prominent role in the American game. But again, everyone already called the game football, so there was no reason to change it.

Just keep in mind that what we call "rugby" is actually "rugby football," yet rugby players handle the ball as much as they kick it. What most of the world calls simply "football" is technically "association football," from the name of its founding and governing body. When soccer and rugby split, the association game simply adopted "football" as its name, while rugby football focused on the first part of its name. That doesn't mean one game is football while the other isn't. They're still both football games with a shared origin.

What's more, since the soccer/rugby split, other football-related games have evolved to emphasize other parts of the body to propel the ball. In fact, of the world's six major football codes -- soccer, rugby league, rugby union, Australian rules football, American (gridiron) football, and Gaelic football -- soccer is the only one that prohibits use of the hands. And they all employ kicking strategies to a greater or lesser extent.

In 1895 Rugby football clubs north of England based in Huddersfield, Yorkshire created a break-way game that became known as Rugby League Football. This is a faster game with 13 players instead of the 15 as used in the Rugby Union game. In Britain today a football club will typically carry the name of the village, town or city in which the club is located followed by one of three acronyms namely AFC (Association Football Club), RUFC (Rugby Union Football Club) or RLFC (Rugby League Football Club). All are considered forms of football that evolved from a common game with very few rules which can be traced hundreds of years. As American football was created by emigrants influenced by these games American Football shares these common origin as do the people whose medieval European ancestors who played the game in its original primitive pre-codified form.

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American Football History
NFL Pro Bowl

How many quarterbacks go to the pro bowl?

6. 3 per team.

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