The first NFL Monday night game nationally televised is now available in COLOR on DVD from the vast Rare Sportsfilms library of pro football films produced over a generation ago! Note that this is NOT a TV broadcast (NO regular season NFL TV broadcasts from before 1970 remain in existence). Note also that this is the only footage that exists from this well-remembered game watched by millions on Halloween Night almost half a century ago! Until now, this rare film (narrated by Lindsey Nelson) has never been made available in any form, from any source, including NFL Films!
This game at brand new Busch Memorial Stadium in downtown St. Louis is a matchup of two solid defensive clubs – veteran coach George Halas’ 3-3 Bears and new head coach Charlie Winner’s 5-1-1 St. Louis Cardinals. Indeed it is All-Pro free safety Larry Wilson of the Cardinals who becomes the star of the game, with three interceptions (one for a 29-yd TD) and numerous tackles.
The Cardinals drive down the field at the outset, and runs by Missouri All-American Johnny Roland bring the ball to the four, from where Roland scores to put St. Louis in front, 7-0. The Bears’ first series is soon ended with a Larry Wilson interception and a return to the Bear 18 yd-line! After several consecutive short carries by Roland, Johnny again scores to give the Cardinals a quick 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter is pretty much of a defensive standoff until the Bears mount a drive late in the half. A spectacular left-handed 39-yd pass by Gale Sayers to Dick Gordon brings the ball deep into Cardinal territory. After a short running play by Sayers near the goal line fails with 30 seconds left, QB Rudy Bukich dives over on a sneak to cut the Redbird lead in half at the half, 14-7!
The only scoring in the third quarter is a Roger LeClerc 16-yd field goal (he misses a 47-yd try in the second quarter). With the score now 14-10 opening the 4th quarter, Jim Bakken kicks a 40-yd FG to give the Cardinals a 7-point cushion once again, 17-10. A long Bukich to Dick Gordon pass takes the ball into the end zone for the Bears, BUT there is holding on the play, costing Chicago a TD. Bukich tries the same play again, but this time the pass is intercepted, again by Larry Wilson, who takes it all the way back for a 29-yd touchdown and a 24-10 St. Louis lead! The Bears are still battling however, and a Bukich to Sayers pass at the Bear 30 is complete. Gale gets away and tears across the field to complete an 80-yd TD play, bringing the score to 24-17! Late in the game, the Bears are driving again, as runs and pass receptions by Jon Arnett bring the ball across mid-field. But a long pass from Bukich intended for Gordon is stolen by Larry Wilson at the Cardinal 15 to end all Bears hopes, and the Cardinals win this memorable game, 24-17.
Throughout this DVD, you’ll see many other Cardinals of the day: Quarterback Charlie Johnson, Jackie Smith, Don Brumm, Willis Crenshaw, Chuck Walker, Jerry Stovall, Billy Gambrell, Sonny Randle, Bill Koman, Sam Silas, Dale Meinert, Prentice Gautt, Larry Stallings and Bobby Joe Conrad. In action for the Bears are Mike Ditka, Richie Petitbon, Frank Cornish, Jon Arnett, Ronnie Bull, Charlie Bivins, Ed O’Bradovich, Mike Reilly, George Seals, Rosey Taylor, Benny McRae and many others!
To order your own DVD of this well-remembered game, send $29.95 plus $4.00 S & H to:
(Illinois residents must add $2.00 state sales tax)
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