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From Baltimore to Broadway

Hall of Fame sportscaster Curt Gowdy called Super Bowl III the most important game in pro football history. That game transformed the NFL and made the Super Bowl America's premier sporting event. Popular history tells us that 40 years ago, a brash, upstart quarterback named "Broadway" Joe Namath "guaranteed" a victory over an awesome Baltimore Colts team. Namath's bold personality, his aura of confidence, and his strategic passing and play-calling were instrumental in giving the rebellious AFL its historic first Super Bowl victory over the rival NFL. Almost forgotten, however, is that Jets fullback Matt Snell rushed for a then-Super Bowl record 121 yards and scored the Jets' lone touchdown. Overlooked, too, is the opportunistic play of the Jets' defense. Ranked No. 1 in the AFL, New York's defense forced five turnovers and held a Colt offense averaging 30 points per game against NFL opponents scoreless until the game's final few minutes. Baltimore had its heroes, as well. There was the great Johnny Unitas, injured but still owning a touch of magic in his passing arm and persona called upon to save Baltimore and the NFL from a humiliating defeat. For millions of viewers, Super Bowl III turned into a romantic gem: Johnny U and Broadway Joe--the old master and the young rebel--engaged in a classic matchup beneath darkening skies in the famed Orange Bowl. From Baltimore to Broadway is the first book that tells the complete story of Super Bowl III from the recollections of the Colts as well as the Jets. It was a moment in time when the sport's past, present, and future met in historical intersection. To the men who made it happen, who played a role in its final outcome, Super Bowl III is more than just the game that changed pro football. It's an event that changed their lives and continues to impact them to this day.
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About the Author

Ed Gruver is an award-winning sportswriter for the Intelligencer Journal who has covered the Baltimore Ravens, Philadelphia Phillies, and Philadelphia 76ers. He is the author of The History of the American Football League, The Ice Bowl, Koufax, and Nitschke and was a contributing writer to Total Football I and Total Football II. His articles have appeared in national magazines, and he is a member of the Pro Football Researchers Association. He lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Don Maynard is a former professional football player. He was a wide receiver on the New York Jets for Super Bowl III and was elected into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1987.

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