Another rare broadcast treasure has been released from our vault of vintage film not seen in over 50 years by the general public! A fascinating ABC TV special featuring the World Champion Cleveland Browns and the San Francisco 49’ers, “Mayhem On A Sunday Afternoon” is now available on DVD for the first time ever! The show is a behind-the-scenes story of the first 1965 pre-season game between the 1964 champion Browns and the last place 49’ers. The 58-minute B & W program is also a brief history of football, concentrating on the NFL game, the “big business” of pro football ($14 million for TV rights in ’65) and a unique, behind-the-scenes look at both teams in training camp as well as old Kezar Stadium, where the game takes place. Included is a trio of original 3-M Company commercials which add to the nostalgia of the piece! You’ll see the NFL Draft, the L.A. Rams scouting staff at work and featurettes on John Unitas, Fran Tarkenton, Jim Taylor, George Halas, Jim Thorpe, Red Grange and Sammy Baugh! Also a look at the Hall Of Fame in Canton Ohio, and 73-year old Clark Shaunassy at work in his office with the original play cards he drew up for Coach Halas to use in the famous 1940 73-0 NFL Championship Game at Washington (by 1965 the “T” formation had been adopted by all pro teams).
In preparation for the game, the film shifts to Browns training camp at Hiram College and covers workouts with head coach Blanton Collier. Shown are trainer Leo Murphy, Lou Groza, Jim Kanicki, Frank Ryan, Gary Collins, Clifton McNeil and of course the NFL’s greatest running back, Jim Brown. Young club owner Art Modell talks about “modern day” professional football and is also shown working out with the team. Soon, the film switches to the west coast and 49’ers training camp at St. Mary’s College. Here you’ll see and hear the sounds of more workouts, this time under the eyes of head coach Jack Christiansen and offensive coach Bill Johnson. Y.A. Tittle, now a part-time coach is miked during workouts and you’ll hear him as he watches young quarterback George Mira. You’ll also have a seat in class with coach Johnson at the blackboard diagramming plays.
On game day, you’ll ride the bus with the Browns as they travel to Kezar stadium. Meanwhile, the 49’ers are getting ready in their clubhouse. Number one QB John Brodie explains to reporters why he won’t be playing. Soon, Cleveland players, including star running back Jim Brown, are pulling on their pads and jerseys for the game in their locker room. The teams emerge from the dark tunnel into a bright, sunlit stadium to the cheers of 49’er fans! The 49’ers kick off and as the game is played, strategy is discussed and the game is analyzed. Most shots are from the bench and sidelines and you’ll hear what the players say during the game. During the second half Jim Ninowski relieves Frank Ryan at QB for the Browns and young Leroy Kelly spells Jim Brown. For the 49’ers, you’ll see John David Crow, Kermit Alexander, Jimmy Johnson and many others in action.