I will be starting a weekly series in the off-season to educate our loyal readers about the history of our Baltimore Ravens. Every week I will focus on a topic that relates to Ravens' history. This week I will focus on the Baltimore football years of the AAFC Baltimore Colts.
(More after the "Jump"...)
Lets go back to the days of the old Baltimore Colts. On December 28, 1946 the city of Baltimore was awarded with a professional football team when the bankrupt All-American Football Conference (AAFC) franchise, the Miami Seahawks, was purchased and relocated to Baltimore. In a fan renaming contest won by Charles Evans, it was decided that the new franchise would now be known as the Baltimore Colts.
After giving hope to the newly born Baltimore Colts fanbase by winning their first game against the Brooklyn Dodgers 16-7, the Baltimore Colts proceeded to lose the next 4 games. The next week the Colts tied the San Francisco 49ers 28-28. A horrific first season was about get worse, as the Colts lost the next 7 games. Hosting Chicago the next week, with a 1-10-1 record hanging over their heads, the Colts earned their second and last win of the 1947 season by beating the Chicago Rockets 14-7. The next week in the season finale at Memorial Stadium, the Colts got shut-out by the Cleveland Browns 42-0.
Going into the 1948 season the Colts were under harsh criticism about not being able to win. Well they responded to the criticism by going 7-7, and making the playoffs. In their first playoff game ever, the Colts lost a heart-breaker to the Buffalo Bills 28-17. The Baltimore Colts finished the 1948 season with a 7-8 record.
In the 1949 season, Baltimore was looking for revenge. The irony in the season is that their only win of the season came against the team that cost the a championship the previous year, the Buffalo Bills. They got their revenge on the Bills, but apparently they only held grudges on teams that cost them a championship. They finished the season 1-11.
The AAFC and NFL merged in 1950, and the Colts joined the NFL. After finishing 1–11 for the second consecutive year, the Baltimore Colts were dissolved by the league on January 18, 1951, because of its failing financial condition. Many Baltimore fans protested the loss of their team and continued to support the marching band that was trying to re-establish a football team in Baltimore for the next two years.(Hence, the "Band That Never Died")
Next week I will talk about trials and tribulations of the city of Baltimore to get football back into their city. I hope you enjoyed the first installment of Ravens History!