As many readers know, I have a very warm spot in my heart for the American Football League, and as I sat to do a blog still a few weeks from camp craziness beginning, I thought I would take a look back at some of the ways in which the AFL made a permanent mark on pro football.
For one thing, when the merger was completed the National Football League all of a sudden had 10 more franchises, many in cities that might never have gotten teams if there had never been an AFL.
Without any question, Denver was one of those cities. Even today, it is the 18th largest television market and listed on most surveys as approximately the 23rd largest American population center, so the NFL would have been in no big hurry to put a team here.
The AFL was the only pro football league to compete successfully with the NFL, and its success over a decade brought several big time changes to the game of pro football.