American Football League (1926)

American Football Leaguefirst American Football LeagueAFL1926first AFLAmerican Football League of 1926 AFL AFL Ioriginal AFL1920s AFL
The first American Football League (AFL), sometimes called AFL I, AFLG, or the Grange League, was a professional American football league that operated in 1926.wikipedia
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Charles X. Zimmerman

Founded by Charles "C.C." Pyle, (1882–1939), and General Charles X. Zimmerman, (1865–1926), as Vice President and starring Hall of Fame halfback Harold Edward "Red" Grange, (1903–1991), the short-lived league with nine teams competed against the more established - then six year old NFL, both for players and for fans.
He was also the vice president of the first American Football League, as well as the owner of the league's Cleveland Panthers.

Red Grange

Harold "Red" GrangeGrangeHarold E. "Red" Grange
Founded by Charles "C.C." Pyle, (1882–1939), and General Charles X. Zimmerman, (1865–1926), as Vice President and starring Hall of Fame halfback Harold Edward "Red" Grange, (1903–1991), the short-lived league with nine teams competed against the more established - then six year old NFL, both for players and for fans.
When his rookie contract expired, he and agent C. C. Pyle formed the American Football League in 1926, with Grange playing for the Yankees.

New York Yankees (NFL)

New York YankeesYankeesNew York Yankees (AFL)
While Pyle's and Grange's New York Yankees team and the already established Philadelphia Quakers became reliable draws, the lack of star power and the uncertain financial conditions of the other seven teams led to the league's dissolution after one season.
The team was a member of the first American Football League in 1926, and later the National Football League from 1927 to 1929.

Philadelphia Quakers (AFL)

Philadelphia QuakersQuakers
While Pyle's and Grange's New York Yankees team and the already established Philadelphia Quakers became reliable draws, the lack of star power and the uncertain financial conditions of the other seven teams led to the league's dissolution after one season. The AFL and NFL went to head-to-head competition in New York (Yankees and Giants), across the East River in Brooklyn (Horsemen and Lions), in Chicago (Bulls vs Bears and Cardinals), and in Philadelphia (Quakers and Yellow Jackets).
The Philadelphia Quakers were a professional American football team that competed in the first American Football League in 1926 and won the league’s only championship.

Rock Island Independents

Rock IslandfranchiseRock Island team
The NFL charter member Rock Island Independents left the then seven-year-old league to join the new AFL, and the upstart league matched the NFL in having a road team representing Los Angeles.
In 1926, the Independents left the NFL to become a charter member of the first American Football League, the only NFL team to do so.

Los Angeles Wildcats

Los Angeles1926 AFL teamWildcats
The NFL charter member Rock Island Independents left the then seven-year-old league to join the new AFL, and the upstart league matched the NFL in having a road team representing Los Angeles.
The Los Angeles Wildcats (also reported in various media as Pacific Coast Wildcats, Los Angeles Wilson Wildcats and Wilson's Wildcats) was a traveling team of the first American Football League that was not based in its nominal home city but in Chicago, Illinois (it trained in Rock Island).

C. C. Pyle

Charles C. PyleBunion DerbyC. C. "Cash and Carry" Pyle
Founded by Charles "C.C." Pyle, (1882–1939), and General Charles X. Zimmerman, (1865–1926), as Vice President and starring Hall of Fame halfback Harold Edward "Red" Grange, (1903–1991), the short-lived league with nine teams competed against the more established - then six year old NFL, both for players and for fans.
When Pyle's application for the Yankees joining the NFL was rejected, he announced the formation of the first American Football League in 1926.

Chicago Bulls (AFL, 1926)

Chicago BullsBullsChicago
The AFL and NFL went to head-to-head competition in New York (Yankees and Giants), across the East River in Brooklyn (Horsemen and Lions), in Chicago (Bulls vs Bears and Cardinals), and in Philadelphia (Quakers and Yellow Jackets).
The Chicago Bulls were a professional American football team that competed in the first American Football League in 1926.

Cleveland Panthers

earlier failed football teamCleveland
The AFL's Cleveland Panthers, previously independent, were also preparing to go face-to-face with their opposites Cleveland Bulldogs, the earlier NFL champions of 1924, when Bulldogs owner Sam Deutsch decided to suspend the operations for 1926.
The Panthers competed in the first American Football League (AFL), founded by Charles "Cash and Carry" Pyle (1882–1939), in 1926.

Frankford Yellow Jackets

Frankford YellowjacketsFrankfordFrankford Athletic Assoc.
The AFL and NFL went to head-to-head competition in New York (Yankees and Giants), across the East River in Brooklyn (Horsemen and Lions), in Chicago (Bulls vs Bears and Cardinals), and in Philadelphia (Quakers and Yellow Jackets). Simultaneous with the Cardinals-Pros game was an exhibition game between Pottsville and an all-star team consisting of former Notre Dame players at Shibe Park, near the home of the Frankford Yellow Jackets, who protested the invasion of territorial rights by the Maroons.
However, the NFL reinstated the Maroons the following year after fears that the team would join Red Grange's upstart American Football League, which posed a threat to the league.

History of the Chicago Cardinals

Chicago CardinalsRacine CardinalsChicago
In an era in which no professional football team had a prearranged schedule (each team was responsible for booking its own games, with virtually no limitations as to the number of games), the Pottsville Maroons were hailed as the NFL champions by several newspapers after Pottsville defeated the Chicago Cardinals on December 6, even though there were still two weeks left in the season.
After the folding of the first American Football League after its lone season, Slater, against all odds, successfully joined the Chicago Cardinals of the National Football League.

Boston Bulldogs (AFL)

Boston Bulldogs
Boston Bulldogs.
The Boston Bulldogs were a professional American football team that competed in the first American Football League in 1926.

Tim Mara

Timalso named Timand namesake
While NFL management was contemplating the penalties for the suspended Pottsville franchise (which was eventually reinstated with the payment of a moderate fine) in December, C. C. “Cash and Carry” Pyle surprised the league by requesting a franchise in New York City for himself and star back Red Grange and secured a five-year lease for baseball's Yankee Stadium, in direct competition to Tim Mara's year-old New York Giants.
In 1926, Grange and his manager, C. C. Pyle, formed the first American Football League with a franchise in New York, the Yankees, to compete with the Giants.

Providence Steamrollers (National Football League)

Providence Steam RollerProvidence Steam RollersProvidence Steamroller
Carr immediately canceled the Maroons' scheduled game against the Providence Steam Roller and suspended the franchise.
The star player for Providence was halfback George "Wildcat" Wilson, a 1925 All-American from the University of Washington who had spent the 1926 season as the head of the traveling Los Angeles Wildcats of the AFL.

Elmer Layden

Coached by Eddie McNeeley, the Horsemen featured Notre Dame Four Horsemen Harry Stuhldreher and Elmer Layden.
Layden played professionally in the original AFL in 1925 and 1926 with three clubs, the Hartford Blues, the Brooklyn Horsemen, and the Rock Island Independents.

Pottsville Maroons

Boston BulldogsBoston Bulldogs (NFL)Pottsville
In an era in which no professional football team had a prearranged schedule (each team was responsible for booking its own games, with virtually no limitations as to the number of games), the Pottsville Maroons were hailed as the NFL champions by several newspapers after Pottsville defeated the Chicago Cardinals on December 6, even though there were still two weeks left in the season.
The league feared that the Maroons would jump to the threatening American Football League.

Brooklyn Lions / Horsemen (1926)

Brooklyn LionsBrooklyn HorsemenBrooklyn (football, defunct)
The AFL and NFL went to head-to-head competition in New York (Yankees and Giants), across the East River in Brooklyn (Horsemen and Lions), in Chicago (Bulls vs Bears and Cardinals), and in Philadelphia (Quakers and Yellow Jackets).
The team was formed as the league's counter-move to the first American Football League, which enfranchised a team called the Brooklyn Horsemen, a professional football team that competed in the 1926 AFL season.

1925 NFL Championship controversy

before it was stripped from the team due to a disputed rules violation19251925 NFL Championship
The controversial ending of the National Football League's 1925 season led to the founding of the first AFL by Red Grange's agent, C. C. Pyle.
The controversy involving territorial rights also led to the founding of the first American Football League after New York Giants owner Tim Mara objected to the leasing of Yankee Stadium and the application of an NFL franchise by C. C. Pyle.

Hammond Pros

HammondfranchiseHammond (Ind.) Pros
Cardinals owner Chris O’Brien hastily arranged for two more games – one against the Milwaukee Badgers the following Thursday, another against the Hammond Pros two days later, even though both teams had already disbanded for the season.
The Pros might have lasted even longer, but after winning the 1926 battle with the American Football League, the NFL decided to scale down to 12 teams, getting rid of many of the smaller franchises, including the Pros.

Milwaukee Badgers

Cardinals owner Chris O’Brien hastily arranged for two more games – one against the Milwaukee Badgers the following Thursday, another against the Hammond Pros two days later, even though both teams had already disbanded for the season.
Folz's lifetime ban was lifted, probably to prevent him from going the first American Football League; however he chose not to return to pro football.

Dave Noble

Coached by Roy Watts, the Panthers featured six players who played for the NFL's Cleveland Bulldogs in the 1925 season: Al Michaels, Al Nesser, Dick Wolf, Dave Noble, Ralph Vince, and Doc Elliott.
After his college years, Noble played three seasons in the National Football League (NFL) and one in the American Football League (AFL), and was voted to the NFL All-Pro team in 1925.

Newark Bears (AFL)

Newark BearsNewarkNewark Demons
Newark Bears.
The Newark Bears were a professional American football team that competed in the first American Football League in 1926 AFL season.

Traveling team

road teamevery Crimson Giants game on the roadgames on the road
The NFL charter member Rock Island Independents left the then seven-year-old league to join the new AFL, and the upstart league matched the NFL in having a road team representing Los Angeles.
Below is a list of the traveling teams that were members of the National Football League, the first American Football League, or the second American Football League.

Shibe Park

Connie Mack StadiumPhiladelphiaShibe Park/Connie Mack Stadium
Simultaneous with the Cardinals-Pros game was an exhibition game between Pottsville and an all-star team consisting of former Notre Dame players at Shibe Park, near the home of the Frankford Yellow Jackets, who protested the invasion of territorial rights by the Maroons.
It also served as the site of two AFL games in 1926, the Philadelphia Quakers against the Los Angeles Wildcats on November 20, 1926 and the Quakers against the New York Yankees on November 27, 1926.

Herb Treat

Coached by Herb Treat, Boston's first professional football team had been in financial difficulty from the beginning, having played only six games before folding in November 1926.
In 1926, Treat became the player-coach of Boston's first professional football team—the Boston Bulldogs in the first American Football League.