What was the All America Football League

What was All America Football League

The All-America Football Conference was a football league established to challenge the NFL. Founded in 1944, the inaugural season was played in 1946. The league was home to eight teams, which included: Buffalo Bills, Baltimore Colts, Miami Seahawks, Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers, Brooklyn Dodgers, Los Angeles Dons, Chicago Rockets, and the New York Yankees. Games were played in a double round robin style so each team played one another both home and away.

Buffalo Bills of the All America Football League

The Buffalo Bills of the AAFC were not related to the AFL/NFL club founded by Ralph Wilson in 1959. They did, however, play home games at War Memorial Stadium a.k.a. “The Rock Pile” like their successors did. This team was first known as the Buffalo Bisons but decided to avoid any confusion with the local baseball and hockey teams of the same name. And so they changed their name to the Bills.

A similar principle is true of the Baltimore Colts of the AAFC. They are not related to the NFL Baltimore Colts that went on to become known as the Indianapolis Colts. These Colts did indeed join the NFL in 1950 but the club folded after only a year. A new incarnation of the Colts was created, which became the modern Colts.

Cleveland Browns Championships

The Cleveland Browns, which are directly related to the Browns of the NFL, were highly successful as charter members of the AAFC. They won every league championship during the league’s short tenure. Paul Brown is credited for this success thanks to his coaching and management style.

t Cleveland Municipal Stadium, the Browns (along with the 49ers) would attract some very large gates. These crowds even surpassed those of the NFL. The record for attendance came in 1947, in which the undefeated Browns defeated the 49ers in front of 83,000 people.

The AAFC Merges with the NFL

The war between the AAFC and NFL wore one another down financially. The AAFC was the only serious contender to the NFL aside from the later American Football League. Steelers owner Art Rooney supported an inter-league game much like the later world championship game (which became known as the Super Bowl). Such a game did not happen in spite of its profitability for both leagues. NFL commissioner Bert Bell stated that the NFL’s would forbid the game.