Len Dawson, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Dies News Today
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback and famous radio and TV sports activities persona Len Dawson has died. He was once 87.
He led the Kansas City Chiefs to their first Super Bowl win in 1970, even choosing up the MVP title. “Lenny the Cool” additionally guided Chiefs followers via their ups and downs as a broadcaster for extra than 50 years.
Dawson had entered hospice care previously this month. In a declaration launched through the Chiefs, “Len Dawson is synonymous with the Kansas City Chiefs. Len embraced and got here to embody Kansas City and the human beings that name it home. You would be hard-pressed to locate a participant who had a greater have an impact on in shaping the employer as we be aware of it these days than Len Dawson did,” stated Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt.
Dawson used to be born in Alliance, Ohio, in 1935. Fifty-two years later, he stood at the Hall of Fame in close by Canton, inducted after a 19-year soccer career. He was once solely the 0.33 man or woman to enter the Hall of Fame as a participant and a broadcaster, after Frank Gifford and Dan Dierdorf.
“I was once into working,” Dawson stated with a giggle in 2017, when the broadcasting sales space at Arrowhead Stadium was once formally devoted to him. “Because my mother and father did not have a total lot and they taught me something: ‘If you desire something, discover a way to earn it to get it done.'”
Dawson was once a coloration commentator for the Chiefs radio publicizes on the Chiefs radio community from 1984 via 2017. His broadcast play-by-play companion for 24 of these years, Mitch Holthus, was once a long-time admirer.
“I made certain my mother made a crude, stitched jersey with 1 and 6 on it due to the fact I desired to be Lenny Dawson,” stated Holthus, referring to Dawson’s jersey No. 16.
Dawson was once a first-round draft select out of Purdue by means of the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1957 however used to be unable to get any sizeable enjoying time with the Steelers or in his two years with the Cleveland Browns in 1960 and 1961.
Meanwhile, Lamar Hunt established the American Football League in 1960.
“I consider (Browns owner/coach) Paul Brown saying, ‘Hey, there is a bunch of sons of wealthy people. This is a interest for them,'” Dawson recalled. “‘It may not closing greater than a 12 months or two. It’s no longer going to be very long.'”
Dawson signed with the Dallas Texans in the fledgling AFL earlier than the 1962 season and was once reunited with educate Hank Stram, one of his assistant coaches at Purdue. The Texans received the AFL championship that yr earlier than transferring to Kansas City.
In 1964, Dawson threw 30 landing passes, a Chiefs document till Patrick Mahomes shattered it with 50 in 2018. On the verge of breaking Dawson’s record, Mahomes stated he talked to Dawson about it.
“When you throw 30 touchdowns in modern-day league the place there is a lot greater passing, you are nonetheless having a extremely good season,” stated Mahomes in 2018. “For him to be that advanced, I suggest he received a Super Bowl here. He used to be one of the high-quality quarterbacks to ever play.”
With Dawson at QB, the Chiefs misplaced in Super Bowl I, however beat the Minnesota Vikings 23-7 in Super Bowl IV. Dawson was once the MVP.
“We have been the underdog in that game,” he recalled. “We have been supposed to get beat by means of a couple of touchdowns. Thankfully, we did not agree with that.”
Dawson’s closing season was once in 1975 when he used to be forty Behind an injury-decimated offensive line, he used to be sacked seven instances in a late-season game. By then, Dawson said, he knew his enjoying profession was once over.
“It made my decision,” he said. “I said, ‘That’s it. I do not want to take this whipping like this anymore.'”
Unbeknownst to Dawson in 1966, Chiefs president Jack Steadman started out discussions with administration at KMBC-TV and radio about working Dawson into the broadcasts.
“I did not have any concept he was once doing that, so it ended up beginning my broadcasting career,” Dawson said.
Not solely did he stay a important determine in Kansas City, he additionally grew to become nicely recognised for a groundbreaking countrywide exhibit on HBO referred to as “Inside the NFL.”