Some very sad news is being relayed throughout Chiefs Kingdom.
A Facebook post from former NFL Alumni Kansas City Chapter secretary Karen Conrad has made the rounds, stating that Kansas City Chiefs legendary QB Lenny “The Cool” Dawson has been moved into hospice care. Kansas City star sports Columnist Vahe Gregorian has since confirmed the news.
Dawson, 87, played for the Dallas Texans/Chiefs franchises from 1962 to 1975. A three-time AFL champion and six-time AFL all-star, Dawson was one of the league’s earliest superstars, earning numerous passing titles in the AFL. He led the Chiefs to two Super Bowls, including their first Super Bowl victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV, where he was named the MVP of the game.
In Dawson’s 14-year career with the franchise, he appeared in over 180 games with 157 regular season starts. In that span, Dawson recorded over 2,100 completed passes for 28,507 passing yards and 237 touchdowns. Dawson still holds career franchise records for most passing attempts, completions, yards, touchdowns and interceptions. He previously held the team’s single-season touchdown record, but Patrick Mahomes surpassed that record in 2018.
Dawson was named to the All-AFL Team in 1970. He was inducted into the Chiefs Hall of Fame in 1979. He was later enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987. His No. 16 jersey is among the 11 jerseys retired by the team.
After his NFL playing career, Dawson spent 33 years as a commentator for the Chiefs Radio Network. In 2012 he won the Hall’s Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award for his radio broadcasting work. He retired from radio broadcasting back in 2017.
“Next to my father, few people have had a more lasting impact on the Kansas City Chiefs than Len Dawson,” Chiefs CEO and Chairman Clark Hunt said via press release when Dawson retired. “Over the course of his legendary career – first as a player and later as a broadcaster – Len has been a part of every major moment in franchise history.
To this day and forever more, Dawson will have a lasting impact on the franchise and its fans.