In praise of the 1968 Baltimore Colts 2

By Tom Quiner

The NFL just wrapped its 14th week of the season (excluding tomorrow night’s Monday night game).

The Atlanta Falcons have the best offense in the league with a whopping 469 points, but their defense has given up 358 points, which is terrible.

The best defense belongs to the New England Patriots who have given up only 233 points while scoring an impressive 365 points, an 132 point differential over their opponents, the best in the league.

By contrast, I’d like to resurrect the memory of the 1968 Baltimore Colts who are best known for losing Super Bowl III to the upstart New York Jets and quarterback, Joe Namath.

Setting aside their Super Bowl loss, the Colts had an amazing year that year.

The NFL played a 14 game season back then, and the Colts piled up a whopping 402 points while giving up a measly 144 points, an incredible 258 point differential. This was the best in the league, and far superior to the 132 spread this year’s Patriots enjoy over their opponents in the same number of games.

What’s amazing about the ’68 Colts is they piled up a 13-1 regular season record without their star quarterback, Johnny Unitas, who was injured.  Their back-up quarterback, journeyman Earl Morrall, turned in a stellar performance and won MVP honors.

This was quite a team. Few have exceeded their point spread in a 14 game season. If you watch the highlight film above, pay attention to the behavior of the players when they score a touchdown. There is no dancing, preening, or mocking. Isn’t that refreshing!




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