This Week in NFL History: March 26 through April 1

This Week in NFL History
This Week in NFL History

Relive and recapture iconic moments. Discover that you or a loved one share a birthday with a football legend. Recall an anniversary of an event that forever changed the landscape of the NFL and had a profound impact on your life. It’s all here in This Week in NFL History.

This Week in NFL History is a weekly article that will look back at some of the most memorable events that have occurred during this week historically in professional football. Each nugget is a tidbit of information that is connected to the NFL through history.


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This Week in NFL History

March 26

1934: Wide receiver/placekicker, Gino Cappelletti (Minnesota: 1952-54, Patriots: 1960-70) born in Keewatin, Minnesota.

Career Stats: 292 receptions for 4,589 yards and 42 touchdowns; 176 field goals made in 333 attempts. Cappelletti was 1964 AFL Most Valuable Player and a five-time AFL All-Star (1961, 1963-66)

1960: Running back, Marcus Allen (USC: 1978-81, Raiders: 1982-92, Chiefs: 1993-97) born in San Diego, California.

Career Stats: 3,022 carries for 12,243 yards and 123 touchdowns; 587 receptions for 5,411 yards and 21 touchdowns. Allen was a six-time Pro Bowler (1982, 1984-1987, 1993), two-time First-team All-Pro (1982, 1985), Second-team All-Pro (1984). Allen is the only player in history to win the Heisman Trophy (1981), a National Championship (1978), a Super Bowl (XVIII with Raiders), a Super Bowl MVP, and an NFL Most Valuable Player (1985). He led the NFL in rushing yards (1985) and rushing touchdowns (1982, 1993) and was inducted into Pro Football Hall of Fame (2003)

1966: Tight end, (Charles) Wesley Walls (Mississippi: 1985-88, 49ers: 1989-93, Saints: 1994-95, Panthers: 1996-2002, Packers: 2003) born in Batesville, Mississippi.

Career Stats: 450 receptions for 5,291 yards and 54 touchdowns. Walls was five-time Pro Bowler (1996-1999, 2001). three-time Second-team All-Pro (1996, 1997, 1999), and won Super Bowl XXIV with 49ers

1973: Running back, Marshall Faulk (San Diego State: 1991-93, Colts: 1994-98, Rams: 1999-2005) born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Career Stats: 2,836 carries for 12, 279 yards and 100 touchdowns; 767 receptions for 6,875 yards and 36 touchdowns. Faulk was the NFL Most Valuable Player in 2000 and a three-time NFL Offensive Player of the Year (1999-2001). He was a seven-time Pro Bowler (1994, 1995, 1998-2002), three-time First-team All-Pro (1999-2001), and three-time Second-team All-Pro (1994, 1995, 1998). Faulk played in two Super Bowls with Rams (winning Super Bowl XXXIV and losing Super Bowl XXXV) and was inducted into Pro Football Hall of Fame (2011)

1977: Cornerback, Fernando Bryant (Alabama: 1995-98, Jaguars: 1999-2003, Lions: 2004-07, Steelers: 2008) born in Albany, Georgia.

Career Stats: 360 tackles, 54 passes defended, seven interceptions, and two forced fumbles

1982: Placekicker, Nathaniel (Nate) Kaeding (Iowa: 2000-03, Chargers: 2004-12, Dolphins: 2013) born in Iowa City, Iowa.

Career Stats: 181 field goals made in 210 attempts, 352 extra points made in 354 attempts

1985: Running back, Rashad Jennings (Pittsburgh: 2005-08, Jaguars: 2009-12, Raiders: 2013, Giants: 2014-16, current free agent) born in Forest, Virginia.

Career Stats: 930 carries for 3,772 yards and 23 touchdowns; 191 receptions for 1,469 yards and two touchdowns

1989: Linebacker, Vonnie (Von) Miller (Texas A&M: 2007-10, Broncos: 2011-present) born in Dallas, Texas.

Career Stats: 338 tackles, 73.5 sacks, 13 passes defended, 19 forced fumbles, and an interception

March 27

1943: Linebacker, James Michael (Mike) Curtis (Duke: 1961-64, Colts: 1965-75, Seahawks: 1976, Redskins: 1977-78) born in Rockville, Maryland.

Career Stats: Considered one of the meanest players of his generation, Curtis was a four-time Pro Bowler (1968, 1970, 1971, 1974). He recorded 22 sacks (though sacks weren’t an official record until 1982) and 25 interceptions in his career. One of his interceptions set up the field goal that helped Colts win Super Bowl V

1963: Quarterback, Randall Cunningham (UNLV: 1981-84, Eagles: 1985-95, Vikings: 1997-99, Cowboys: 2000, Ravens: 2001) born in Santa Barbara, California.

Career Stats: 2,429-of-4,289 for 29,979 yards, 207 yards, 134 interceptions; 775 carries for 4,928 yards and 35 touchdowns. Cunningham was a four-time Pro Bowler (1998-90, 1998), two-time First-team All-Pro (1990, 1998) and two-time Second-team All-Pro (1988, 1992)

1976: Linebacker Chikezie (Chike) Okeafor (Purdue: 1994-98, 49ers: 1999-2002, Seahawks: 2003-04, Cardinals: 2005-09) born in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Career Stats: 383 tackles, 53 sacks, 18 passes defended, 15 forced fumbles, and two interceptions

1983: Cornerback, Domonique Foxworth (Maryland: 2001-04, Broncos: 2005-07, Falcons: 2008, Ravens: 2009-11) born in Oxford, England.

Career Stats: 266 tackles, 51 passes defended, eight interceptions, three forced fumbles

March 28

1897: Tackle/End, Walter (Tillie) Voss (Packers: 1924, Giants: 1926, Bears: 1927-28) born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 1975). Voss and Bears’ End, Frank Hanny were first players in NFL history to be ejected for fighting during a 1924 game

1899: Head coach, Lawrence (Buck) Shaw (49ers: 1946-54, Eagles: 1958-60) born in Mitchellville, Iowa (d. 1977).

Career record: 91-55-5 (49ers: 72-39-4. Eagles: 19-16-1), postseason: 2-1 (49ers: 1-1, Eagles: 1-0). Shaw was first 49ers head coach and won 1960 NFL Championship with Eagles.

1941: Placekicker, James (Jim) Turner (Utah State: 1960-63, Jets: 1964-70, Broncos: 1971-79) born in Martinez, California.

Career Stats: 304 field goals made in 488 attempts; 521 extra points made in 534 attempts. Turner was a two-time Pro Bowler (1968, 1969) and member of AFL All-Time 2nd Team. He kicked three field goals in Jets victory over Colts in Super Bowl III

1953: James Francis (Jim) Thorpe died at age 65 in Lomita, California (b. 1887). Thorpe was one of the most versatile athletes in modern sports history. In addition to playing baseball, basketball, and winning two Olympic gold medals in track and field, he played running back, defensive back, placekicker, and punter for Canton Bulldogs (1915-17, 1919-20), Cleveland/Oorang Indians (1921-23), Rock Island Independents (1924), New York Giants (1925), Tampa Cardinals (1926), and Chicago Cardinals.

Thorpe was also a head coach (Career record: 14-25-2) of Canton Bulldogs (1915-1920), Cleveland/Oorang Indians (1921-23), and Tampa Cardinals (1926). He was the first NFL president (1920-21), a first-team All-Pro (1923), and a member of the 1920s NFL All-Decade Team. Thorpe was one of 17 inaugural inductees into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1963

1963: AFL’s New York Titans officially became New York Jets

1966: Head coach, Jason Garrett (Cowboys: 2010-present) born in Abington, Pennsylvania.

Career record: 59-48 (postseason: 1-2). Garrett was also NFL quarterback (Princeton: 1985-88, Cowboys: 1992-99, Giants: 2000-03, Buccaneers: 2004, Dolphins: 2004).

Career Stats: 165-of-294 for 11 touchdowns and five interceptions. Garrett won two Super Bowls (XXVIII, XXX) as player

1985: Defensive end, Christopher (Chris) Long (Virginia: 2004-07, Rams: 2008-15, Patriots: 2016, current free agent) born in Santa Monica, California.

Career Stats: 281 tackles, 58.5 sacks, 11 passes defended, nine forced fumbles. Long won Super Bowl LI with Patriots and is the son of Hall of Fame defensive end and broadcaster Howie Long

1988: Defensive tackle, Gene (Geno) Atkins (Georgia: 2007-09, Bengals: 2010-present) born in Pembroke Pines, Florida.

Career Stats: 244 tackles, 52 sacks, eight forced fumbles, six passes defended, one safety

1988: Linebacker, NaVorro Bowman (Penn State: 2006-09, 49ers: 2010-present) born in District Heights, Maryland.

Career Stats: 671 tackles, 12.5 sacks, 26 passes defended, seven forced fumbles, four interceptions

1991: Quarterback, Derek Carr (Fresno State: 2009-13, Raiders: 2014-present) born in Fresno, California.

Career Stats: 1,055-of-1,732 for 11,194 yards, 81 touchdowns, and 31 interceptions

March 29

1925: Defensive back, Emlen Tunnell (Toledo: 1941, Iowa: 1946-47, Giants: 1948-58, Packers: 1959-61) born in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania (d. 1975).

Career Stats: Tunnell recorded a then-record 79 interceptions in his career. He was nine-time Pro Bowler (1950-57, 1959), eight-time All-Pro (1949-52, 1954-57), a member of the NFL 1950’s All-Decade and NFL 50th Anniversary All-Time teams. Tunnell was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1967

1955: Running back, Earl Campbell (Texas: 1974-77, Oilers: 1978-84, Saints: 1984-85) born in Tyler, Texas.

Career Stats: 2,187 carries for 9,407 yards and 74 touchdowns; 121 receptions for 806 yards. Campbell was a five-time Pro Bowler (1978-81, 1983), three-time First-team All-Pro (1978-80), the 1978 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and 1979 NFL Most Valuable Player. He lead the NFL in rushing yards three times (1978-80), in rushing touchdowns twice (1979, 1980), and a three-time NFL Offensive Player of the Year (1978-80). Campbell was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1991

1968: Offensive tackle, James (Big Cat) Williams (Cheyney [PA}: 1987-90, Bears: 1991-2002)

Career Stats: Williams started 143 of 166 career games after being undrafted

1983: Defensive end, Justin Tuck (Notre Dame: 2001-04, Giants: 2005-13, Raiders: 2014-15) born in Kellyton, Alabama.

Career Stats: 510 tackles, 66.5 sacks, 30 passes defended, 22 forced fumbles, three interceptions, and one defensive touchdown. Tuck was two-time Pro Bowler (2008, 2010), named to the First-team All-Pro in 2008 and the second-team All-Pro in 2010. Tuck won two Super Bowls (XLII, XLVI) with Giants

1984: Colts’ owner, Robert Irsay moves team in the middle of the night from Baltimore to Indianapolis after negotiations for a new stadium between the team and city of Baltimore deteriorated. The move was made in the middle of the night after the Maryland state Senate passed legislation allowing the city of Baltimore to seize ownership of the Colts by eminent domain but before the bill could signed into law

1994: Cowboys’ owner, Jerry Jones and head coach Jimmy Johnson agreed to part ways after five seasons and consecutive Super Bowl victories (XXVII, XXVIII). Jones, who was teammates with Johnson at the University of Arkansas, hired Barry Switzer, (another former Razorbacks teammate) to replace Johnson. Cowboys would win Super Bowl XXX with Switzer

1996: Relocating Cleveland Browns chose new name of Baltimore Ravens. The name honors author Edgar Allan Poe, whose famous poem was “The Raven”. Poe spent the early part of his career in Baltimore and is buried in the city.

March 30

1935: Running back, Willie (The Wisp) Gallimore (Florida A&M: 1953-56, Bears: 1957-63) born in St. Augustine, Florida (d. 1964).

Career Stats: 670 carries for 2,985 yards and 26 touchdowns; 87 receptions for 1,201 yards and 10 touchdowns. Gallimore was considered one of the last great finds before the modern age of NFL scouting. It was said he could run as fast from side to side as most men could run in a straight line. His #28 was retired by the Bears after he and teammate Bo Farrington were killed in an automobile accident

1963: Offensive tackle, Lomas Brown (Florida: 1981-84, Lions: 1985-95, Cardinals: 1996-98, Browns: 1999, Giants: 2000-01, Buccaneers: 2002) born in Miami, Florida.

Career Stats: Brown started 251 of 263 career games. He was seven-time Pro Bowler (1990-96), three-time First-team All-Pro (1991, 1992, 1995), three-time Second-team All-Pro (1989, 1990, 1994). Brown appeared in two Super Bowls winning Super Bowl XXXVII with Buccaneers and losing Super Bowl XXXV with Giants

1981: Offensive tackle, Jammal Brown (Oklahoma: 2000-04, Saints: 2005-09, Redskins: 2010-12) born in Waxahachie, Texas.

Career Stats: Brown started in 84 of 85 career games. He was a two-time Pro Bowler (2006, 2008), a First-team All-Pro (2006), and won Super Bowl XLIV with Saints

1988: Cornerback, Richard Sherman (Stanford: 2006-10, Seahawks: 2011-present) born in Compton, California.

Career Stats: 332 tackles, 92 passes defended, 30 interceptions, five forced fumbles, two defensive touchdowns, and one sack

2006: Head coach, Howard (Red) Hickey (49ers: 1959-63) died at age 89 in Aptos, California (b. 1917).

Career record: 27-27-1. Hickey designed and named the shotgun formation in 1960. He also played professionally as an end (Arkansas: 1937-40, Steelers: 1941, Rams: 1945-48). Hickey won NFL Championship with Rams in 1945

March 31

1931: Notre Dame head football coach, Knute Rockne, 43, and seven others died when TWA Flight 599 crashed into a wheat field near Bazaar, Kansas. Rockne played professionally for Akron Indians (1914) and Massillon Tigers (1915-1917) while serving as a Fighting Irish assistant coach before being installed as head coach in 1918

1938: Cornerback, James (Jimmy) Johnson (UCLA: 1957-60, 49ers: 1961-76) born in Dallas, Texas.

Career Stats: Johnson had 47 interceptions and 40 receptions for 690 yards. He was five-time Pro Bowler (1969-72, 1974), four-time First-team All-Pro (1969-72), second-team All-Pro (1968). Johnson was a member of the NFL 1970s All-Decade Team and inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1994. He is the brother of Olympic gold medalist Rafer Johnson

1960: Offensive tackle, Mark Tuinei (UCLA: 1978-79, Hawaii: 1982, Cowboys: 1983-1997) born in Oceanside, California (d. 1999).

Career Stats: Started 147 of 195 career games. Tuinei was a two-time Pro Bowler (1994, 1995) and won three Super Bowls (XXVII, XXVIII, XXX) with Cowboys

1962: Wide receiver/Return specialist, John Taylor (Delaware State: 1983-85, 49ers: 1987-95) born in Pennsauken Township, New Jersey.

Career Stats: 347 receptions for 5,598 yards and 43 touchdowns; 14 kick returns for 276 yards, 149 punt returns for 1,517 yards and two touchdowns. Taylor was two-time Pro Bowler (1988, 1989) and won three Super Bowls (XXIII, XXIV, XXIX) with 49ers

1984: Wide receiver, James Jones (San Jose State: 2004-06, Packers: 2007-13, Raiders: 2014, Packers: 2015, current free agent) born in San Jose, California.

Career Stats: 433 receptions for 5,861 yards and 51 touchdowns

April 1

1929: Michigan head football coach, Glenn (Bo) Schembechler was born in Barberton, Ohio (d. 2006). Schembechler was Michigan head coach from 1969-89. 122 Michigan players were drafted by NFL teams during Schembechler’s tenure

1961: Defensive end, James (Jim) Jeffcoat (Arizona State: 1980-82, Cowboys: 1983-94, Bills: 1995-97) born in Long Branch, New Jersey.

Career Stats: 709 tackles, 102.5 sacks, 18 passes defended, two interceptions. Jeffcoat won two Super Bowls (XXVII, XXVIII) with Cowboys and is a member of 100 Sack Club

1965: Offensive tackle, John (Jumbo) Elliott (Michigan: 1984-87, Giants: 1988-95, Jets: 1996-2000, Jets: 2002) born in Lake Ronkonkoma, New York.

Career Stats: Elliott started 156 of 197 career games. He was named to the 1993 Pro Bowl and won Super Bowl XXV with Giants

1972: Offensive coordinator, Michael (Mike) McCoy born in San Francisco, California. McCoy was Chargers head coach (2013-2016).

Career record: 27-37, postseason 0-1. McCoy was Broncos offensive coordinator (2009-12) before accepting Chargers head coach position. He returned to Broncos as offensive coordinator (2017-present) after he was fired by Chargers

1983: Safety, Sean Taylor (Miami: 2001-03, Redskins: 2004-07) born in Miami, Florida (d. 2007).

Career Stats: 299 tackles, 34 passes defended, 12 interceptions, eight forced fumbles, and two interceptions. Taylor was two-time Pro Bowler (2006, 2007) and First-team All-Pro (2007). Taylor was selected to 2008 Pro Bowl after he was murdered in Nov. 27, 2007 home invasion

1990: Sportscaster, Brent Musberger, host of The NFL Today, was fired by CBS. Musberger was replaced by Greg Gumbel

2015: Quarterback, Edward (Eddie) LeBaron died at age 85 in Stockton, California (b. 1930).

Career Stats: 898-of-1,796 for 13,399 yards, 104 touchdowns, 141 interceptions. LeBaron was 1952 NFL Rookie of the Year and four-time Pro Bowler (1955, 1957, 1958, 1962)

– Curtis Rawls is a Managing Editor for cover32 and covers the NFL and New York Giants, like and follow on Facebook and Twitter. Curtis can be followed on Twitter @TheArmchrAnlyst.

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