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The 1967 American Football League Championship Game was the eighth
AFL championship game For its first nine seasons, 1960 American Football League season, 1960 through 1968 American Football League season, 1968, the American Football League determined its champion via a single playoff game between the winners of its two divisions (alth ...
, played on December 31 at
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
in
Oakland, California Oakland is the largest city and the county seat A county seat is an administrative centerAn administrative centre is a seat of regional administration or local government Local government is a generic term for the lowest tiers of public ad ...
. It matched the Western Division champion
Oakland Raiders Oakland is the largest city and the county seat A county seat is an administrative centerAn administrative centre is a seat of regional administration or local government Local government is a generic term for the lowest tiers of public ad ...
(13–1) and the Eastern Division champion
Houston Oilers Houston ( ) is the List of cities in Texas by population, most populous city in Texas, List of United States cities by population, fourth-most populous city in the United States, most populous city in the Southern United States, as well as th ...
(9–4–1) to decide the
American Football League The American Football League (AFL) was a major professional American football American football, referred to simply as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport A team sport includes any ...
(AFL) champion for the
1967 Events January * January 1 – Canada begins a year-long celebration of the 100th anniversary of Canadian Confederation, Confederation, featuring the Expo 67 World's Fair. * January 4 – The Doors release their début album ''The Doors ( ...
season. Quarterback
Daryle Lamonica Daryle Pasquale Lamonica (born July 17, 1941) is a former American football quarterback who played in the American Football League (AFL) and the National Football League (NFL) for 12 seasons, primarily with the History of the Oakland Raiders, Oak ...
, claimed on waivers from the
Buffalo Bills ''Italic text'' The Buffalo Bills are a professional American football team based in the Buffalo–Niagara Falls metropolitan area. They compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league's American Football Conference ...
in the offseason, led the Raiders to a 13–1 record, throwing 30 touchdown passes in the process. The Oilers went from last place in the East in
1966 In February, Luna 9 Luna 9 (Луна-9), internal designation Ye-6 No.13, was an of the 's . On 3 February 1966, the Luna 9 spacecraft became the first spacecraft to achieve a survivable landing on a . Spacecraft The lander had a mass ...
(3–11) to first in 1967, beating out the
New York Jets The New York Jets are a professional American football American football, referred to simply as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangula ...
by a game. Most of the Oilers' offense centered on big fullback
Hoyle Granger Hoyle John Granger ( ;
Retrieved July 29, 2020 born March 7, 1944 in Oberlin, Louisiana) is ...
, and a midseason quarterback trade for the shifty
Pete Beathard Peter Falconer Beathard ( ;
(sending their own starter,
Jacky Lee Jack Ross "Jacky" Lee (July 11, 1938 – May 2, 2016) was an American quarterback The quarterback (commonly abbreviated "QB"), colloquially known as the "signal caller", is a position in gridiron football. Quarterbacks are members of the offens ...
, to the defending champion
Kansas City Chiefs The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football American football, referred to simply as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectang ...
) proved to be the spark that turned Houston's season around. The two teams had met three weeks earlier in Houston, with Oakland winning 19–7 to clinch the Western division title. In contrast to the frigid conditions earlier in the day at the
NFL championship game Throughout its history, the National Football League (NFL) and other rival American football American football, referred to simply as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams o ...
in , the temperature for the AFL title game in northern California was . The host Raiders were ten-point favorites. Oakland won 40–7 and shredded the Oilers with 364 yards of offense, including 263 yards rushing, while allowing just 146 total yards and 38 yards on the ground. The Raiders also forced three turnovers and lost none themselves. The attendance of 53,330 was a new record for the AFL title game, passing the 42,080 of the previous year.


Game summary

Oakland's
Dave Grayson David Lee Grayson (June 6, 1939 – July 29, 2017) was an American football defensive back in the American Football League (AFL) and the National Football League (NFL) for the Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders. He played college football at ...
returned the opening kickoff 47 yards, sparking a drive into scoring range, but it ended with no points when
George Blanda George Frederick Blanda (September 17, 1927 – September 27, 2010) was an American football American football, referred to simply as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two tea ...
missed a 38-yard field goal attempt. Houston then mounted their own drive into Raiders territory, but they also came up empty as a result of a fumble by tight end Alvin Reed on the Oakland 30-yard line that was forced and recovered by linebacker
Dan Conners Daniel Joseph Conners (February 6, 1942 – April 28, 2019) was a college and professional American Football player who played 11 seasons as linebacker for the American Football League's Oakland Raiders from 1964 through 1969, and for the Raiders ...
. Following a three-and-out for each team,
Rodger Bird Rodger Paul Bird (July 2, 1943 – May 16, 2020) was an American professional football Football is a family of team sport A team is a [group (disambiguation), group of individuals (human or non-human) working together to achieve their g ...
returned Jim Norton (safety), Jim Norton's 39-yard punt 9 yards to the Raiders 43-yard line, where they drove 28 yards to score on Blanda's 37-yard field goal with 3:06 left in the first quarter. Houston's next drive stalled on their own 44 and Norton had to punt again on the quarter's final play. Despite their 3–0 deficit, the Oilers seemed to be playing fairly well, having outgained Oakland in total yards, 93-52. This quickly changed on the first play of the second quarter. Hewritt Dixon took a handoff from Lamonica, ran around the left end, and took off down the sidelines untouched for an AFL championship record 69-yard touchdown run, giving the Raiders a 10–0 lead. The rest of the game would be a desperate struggle for Houston's defense to keep the Raiders from adding more points, sometimes successful, but often not. Oakland defensive back Willie Brown (American football), Willie Brown intercepted a pass from Beathard on the Oilers next drive, though this only led to a missed 44-yard attempt by Blanda. After a punt, the Raiders drove to the Houston 36, but came up short again when Dixon was stuffed for no gain on 4th and 1. After another Norton punt, Oakland drove from their own 22-yard line to the Oilers 17. Faced with 4th and 1 again, the Raiders sent their field goal unit on to the field, but ran a fake field goal play with Lamonica (the holder on special teams) throwing a 17-yard touchdown pass to tight end Dave Kocourek. This gave Oakland a 17–0 lead with just 12 seconds left in the half. Oakland completely took over the game in the second half. Houston defensive back Zeke Moore fumbled the opening kickoff when tackled by Duane Benson, and Ken Herock recovered the ball, returning it 6 yards to the Houston 29. Seven plays later, Lamonica made the score 24–0 with a 1-yard touchdown run. Then after a three-and-out, the Raiders drove 56 yards to go up 27-0 on Blanda's 40-yard field goal. The next Houston drive resulted in yet another three-and-out, and Norton's 33-yard punt gave Oakland the ball on their 46. Houston managed to force a punt of their own, but Mike Eischeid's 44-yard kick pinned them back at their own 2-yard line. The next drive resulted in more of the same, another three-and-out and another Norton punt, which Bird returned 19 yards to the Oilers 31-yard line. Oakland then scored on a 7-play drive that ended on a 40-yard Blanda field goal, putting the team up by a score of 30–0. This time, Houston managed to respond, driving 78 yards in 5 plays to score on Beathard's 5-yard touchdown pass to Charley Frazier, cutting the score to 30–7. But by this point, less than 13 minutes remained in the game. Meanwhile, Oakland struck back with a 36-yard field goal, and later finished off the scoring with a 7-play, 48-yard drive that ended on Lamonica's 12-yard touchdown pass to Bill Miller (wide receiver), Bill Miller.http://archives.chicagotribune.com/1968/01/01/page/73/article/oakland-takes-afl-title-40-7 Neither quarterback had a particularly good day. Beathard completed just 15 of 35 passes for 142 yards and a touchdown, with 1 interception. Frazier was the top receiver of the game with 7 receptions for 81 yards and a touchdown. Bobby Jancik returned 4 kickoffs for 100 yards. Lamonica finished the day with 10 completions in 24 attempts for 111 yards and two touchdowns, while also rushing for 22 yards and another score. Dixon rushed for 144 yards and a touchdown, and caught a pass for 8 yards. Banaszak rushed for 116 yards on just 15 carries, and caught a 4-yard pass. Blanda set an AFL championship record with four field goals on six attempts. Norton also had a busy day for Houston, punting 11 times for 423 yards.


Officials

*Referee: John McDonough *Umpire: George Young (American football), George Young *Head Linesman: Al Sabato *Side Linesman: Harry Kessel *Back Judge: Jack Reader *Field Judge: Frank Kirland The AFL added a sixth Official (American football), game official, the side linesman, in the 1966 American Football League season, previous season; the NFL added its sixth official, the line judge, in . The seventh official, the side judge, was added in .


Players' shares

The winning Raiders earned about $6,500 each, while the Oilers received about $5,000 each. The upcoming Super Bowl II awarded an additional $15,000 per player for the winners and $7,500 each for the losing team.


See also

* 1967 American Football League season, 1967 AFL season * American Football League#AFL Championship Games, AFL Championship Games * Super Bowl II * 1967 NFL Championship Game


Video


Raiders.com
- 1967 AFL Championship Game highlights


References

{{NFL on NBC American Football League Championship Game, 1967 Oakland Raiders postseason Houston Oilers postseason 1967 American Football League season, Championship Game American football in the San Francisco Bay Area December 1967 sports events in the United States 1967 in sports in California