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Famous NFL Firsts


First NFL Night Game - November 6, 1929
The Chicago Cardinals defeated the Providence Steam Roller, 16-0.

First NFL Rules - February 25, 1933
In 1933, NFL officials adopted rules specifically for the NFL and discontinued the use of collegiate rules.

First NFL Championship Game - December 17, 1933
The Chicago Bears defeated the New York Giants, 23-21.

First NFL Draft Pick - February 8, 1936
A halfback by the name of Jay Berwanger holds the distinction of being the very first NFL draft pick and the first Heismann Trophy winner.

First Pro Bowl - January 15, 1939
The New York Giants defeated the Pro All-Stars, 13-10.

First NFL Divisional Playoff Game - December 14, 1941
The Chicago Bears defeated the Green Bay Packers, 33-14, in an NFL Western Division playoff game.

First Modern African-American NFL Player - March 21, 1946
The Los Angeles Rams signed halfback Kenny Washington to an NFL contract. (Fritz Pollard won a championship with Akron in 1920, but Washington is considered the first African-American player of the modern era.)

First African-American NFL Player From an All-Black College - 1947
Paul "Tank" Younger also signed with the L.A. Rams a year after Washington.

First Use of a Penalty Flag in the NFL - September 17, 1948
The penalty flag was first used in the NFL in a game between the Green Bay Packers and the Boston Yanks.

First Overtime NFL Game - August 28, 1955
The Los Angeles Rams defeated the New York Giants, 23-17, three minutes into overtime of a preseason contest.

First Overtime NFL Championship Game - December 28, 1958
The Baltimore Colts defeated the New York Giants, 23-17.

First Super Bowl - January 15, 1967
Although it was not called the Super Bowl at the time it was played, the Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10, in Super Bowl I. At the time the less flashy title of AFL-NFL championship game was used. Super Bowl III was actually the first championship game that was billed as the Super Bowl at the time it was played.

First African-American Head Coach of the Modern NFL Era - 1989
Art Shell was hired as head coach of the Oakland Raiders after serving as a player and assistant coach for the Raiders for 20 years.

First NFL Playoff Game Featuring Two Black Head Coaches - January 4, 2003
Herman Edwards' New York Jets defeated Tony Dungy's Indianapolis Colts 41-0 in the wild-card round.

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