American Football League

The American Football League ( AFL) was an American professional league for football. It existed from 1960 to 1969 before 1970 with the NFL ( National Football League) merged. The new league retained the name NFL, but now consisted of two conferences, the American Football Conference in the former played the teams in the AFL, and the National Football Conference, the previous NFL. Thus, the AFL was the only competitor league to the NFL, which over time was successful and merged without losses to teams with the NFL.

Even before the unification common playoffs between the winners of the AFL and the NFL have been held since 1967. In order for the Super Bowl was launched.

The success of the AFL was based on several pillars. First of all, American football was in the 1960s, one in the popularity of the audience strongly growing sport that is unlocked at the time for baseball. The teams in the league were housed in large, the NFL has not been roofed cities. The founder of the league, Lamar Hunt, joined with ABC a television contract, which included the broadcasting of all matches of the league for the first time. Also, the AFL players who played at smaller colleges, which the NFL refused previously opened. Thus, the AFL opened especially African-American players who had little chance in the NFL. This, along with several rule changes (eg the introduction of the 2 -point conversion), led to a much more attractive game.

The AFL also indirectly caused that football games in the United States are broadcast over the full length. When AFL game of the Oakland Raiders against the New York Jets (1968 ) NBC broke the game transmission from the score at 29:32 and showed the children's film Heidi returns home, so that the TV audience, the two last-minute touchdowns the Raiders missed. The reaction was so devastating that since programs have to wait after a football game at the end of the match.


  • Football League
  • American football in the United States
  • Founded in 1960