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How the Pats morphed from a cape house into an NFL titan

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by jmt57, Jun 23, 2009.

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  1. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    How the Patriots morphed from a Cape house into an NFL titan by Sean Leahy of USA Today

    I'm generally not a reader of USA Today, but in a perusal around the interweb for NFL, and specifically Pats-related news, I found this column about the beginning of the early days of the Patriots. Apparently it is the first in a series of the ten AFL franchises on the 50th anniversary of the AFL.


    If Mary Sullivan had had her way, the New England Patriots might never have become a reality.

    The wife of Patriots founder Billy Sullivan had a dream — and a savings account to match — for a summer home on Massachusetts' Cape Cod. But her husband persuaded Mary to wait on the Cape home as he and nine partners invested $25,000 to purchase the start-up American Football League's final franchise charter in 1959.

    It was a humble beginning to a team that would, more than four decades later, become one of the NFL's titans. But it made Sullivan, who died in 1998, the godfather of professional football in New England.

    continue reading . . .
     
  2. khayos

    khayos In the Starting Line-Up

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    Dayum. Want to trade my house in Hyannis for the Patriots, Mr. Kraft?
     
  3. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Yeah, no kidding!

    Fortunately for us the AFL was more successful than the WFL, USFL, and XFL.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Disable Jersey

    God bless you Billy Sullivan and thank you for my NE Patriots
     
  5. Wax Frog

    Wax Frog In the Starting Line-Up

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    Amen, bruthah! :D
     
  6. italian pat patriot

    italian pat patriot In the Starting Line-Up

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    #12 Jersey

    pity and sad that Billy Sullivan did not see the Patriots win a Super Bowl

    great article anyway
     
  7. nashvillepatsfan

    nashvillepatsfan In the Starting Line-Up

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    good find. Thanks for posting
     
  8. Gwedd

    Gwedd PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #61 Jersey

    What a great story! Thanks for posting that for us! :)

    Respects,
     
  9. godef

    godef In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think that was a matter of market saturation. When the AFL started, there was room for more teams in the country; there were large markets without pro teams. But after merging with the NFL, there wasn't so much room. I think it more surprising that leagues like the AAFC failed, but I guess pro football wasn't as big back then, and the AFL had the benefit of television.
     
  10. efin98

    efin98 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Only Denver and Houston were "new" territory for pro football as the others either already had teams that moved, folded, or had a pro team in or near the city. Boston already had had three NFL teams(Bulldogs, Braves/Redskins, Yanks) and an AAFC team before the Patriots came about...

    But that NBC money and the deep pockets and anger of some of the owners really saved that league long enough to force a full merger instead of a partial merger like the AAFC.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2009
  11. godef

    godef In the Starting Line-Up

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    Good point, but I still think there was room for more top level pro football teams at the start of the 60s, and not as much room now. Of course, there's always LA.
     
  12. efin98

    efin98 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    True, there's maybe only a couple of places left that would be virgin territory...but the change in philosophy from fan bases based on one city to whole regions has led to that as well.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2009
  13. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    There are two markets left. LA and San Antonio are big and unrepresented. But the Bay area is over-represented, with two teams for that relatively small market. The Raiders have been off and on again with LA. Raiders management has laid all the foundations to secure LA once again, if the Stadium issue there ever gets resolved.

    They have carefully documented failures of Oakland to do promised things for them, guaranteed ticket sales, Coleseum modifications that will allow them to leave without any long term lease considerations, or other restrictions. They even sued the League to establish that they owned the LA territory.
     
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