September 23, 1960: Buffalo Bills vs. Boston Patriots
Historical Game of the Week
By Ken Crippen
- Professional Football Researchers Association
Published: November 3rd, 2008
September 23, 1960
Buffalo Bills 13
Boston Patriots 0
Location: Boston University
The Bills were 0-2 (they lost 27-3 to the New York Titans and lost 27-21 to the Denver Broncos) heading into the game, while Boston was 1-1 (they lost 13-10 to the Denver Broncos and won 28-24 over the New York Titans). The pressure was on for the Bills to pick up their first victory in order to keep pace with the rest of the division.
Head coach Buster Ramsey had his game plan in place, “I figured they’d be shooting their linebackers through at us. The movies of our games showed the other teams had stopped our running game by doing it. So my plan was to run a couple of rollouts, then throw a screen pass once they began laying back.”
It would prove to be effective early in the game. On the Bills’ third offensive play, Tommy O’Connell tossed a screen pass to Carl Smith. A block from Monte Crockett freed Smith, who ran 58 yards for the first score of the game.
The Patriots tried to answer and drove to the deep into Buffalo territory, but halfback Dick Christy fumbled on the Bills’ 17-yard line. Christy would later fumble again while returning a punt late in the first quarter. This led to Buffalo’s second score, which was a two-yard run by Wray Carlton early in the second quarter.
Not only was this the first Bills victory of their very short existence, this was the first shutout in AFL history. The Bills defense played an outstanding game, forcing seven turnovers (three fumble recoveries and four interceptions). The offense also had a good outing. For the first time, the Bills topped 100 yards rushing (108 yards).