Jan 132012
 

Below is a listing of the first major pro football game played in each state. Includes exhibition games that involved only one league participant.

Leagues Included: NFL, AAFC (1946-49), AFL (1960-69)

First Major Pro Football Game Played in Each State

Legend: Type (Type of game played.  Exh = Exhibition | Off = Official Game)

Note: An official football game is one that counts in the standings.

Columns can be sorted by clicking on the titles in the header.

StateCityYearDateWon/TiedLost/TiedScoreType
ALBirmingham19389/5Chicago BearsatSouthern All-Stars32-18Exh
ARPine Bluff192212/17Milwaukee BadgersatPine Bluff74-0Exh
AZPhoenix19342/14Chicago BearsatArizona All-Stars55-0Exh
CAPasadena19211/15Akron ProsnTuffy Conn's All-Stars13-7Exh
CODenver19361/1Detroit LionsnPro All-Stars33-0Exh
CTNew Haven192012/5Canton BulldogsatWashington Glee Club0-0Off
DCWashington192110/9Washington Senatorsvs.Wilmington Collegians33-0Exh
DEWilmington19378/19Philadelphia EaglesatWilmington Clippers14-6Exh
FLCoral Gables192512/25Chicago BearsatCoral Gables Collegians7-0Exh
GAAtlanta193012/13Brooklyn DodgersnMemphis Tigers13-0Exh
HIHonolulu193212/26Green Bay PackersatKamehemeha Alumni19-13Exh
IASioux City192112/4Sioux Cityvs.Minneapolis Marines10-0Exh
ILRock Island19209/26Rock Island Independentsvs.St. Paul Ideals48-0Off
INFort Wayne192010/17Fort Wayne Friarsvs.Columbus Panhandles14-0Off
KSWichita193612/13Brooklyn DodgersnSt. Louis Terriers100-0Exh
KYLouisville192110/16Louisville Brecksvs.New Albany Calumet Indians13-7Exh
LAShreveport192212/28Toledo MaroonsnMilwaukee Badgers17-0Exh
MABoston192512/9Providence Steam RolleratChicago Bears9-6Off
MDBaltimore192112/10Baltimore Prosvs.Washington Senators10-3Exh
MEBangor19599/5New York GiantsnGreen Bay Packers14-0Exh
MIDetroit192010/10Detroit Heraldsvs.Cleveland Panthers40-14Off
MNMinneapolis192011/14Decatur StaleysatMinneapolis Marines3-0Off
MOSaint Louis19239/30St. Louis All-Starsvs.Murphysboro25-0Exh
MSJackson19698/16Kansas City ChiefsnCincinnati Bengals23-7Exh
NCCharlotte193312/17Portsmouth SpartansatCharlotte Bantams40-6Exh
NEOmaha192310/28Rock Island IndependentsatOmaha Olympics22-6Exh
NHManchester19349/23Boston RedskinsatManchester Pros83-0Exh
NJAtlantic City192312/16 *Canton BulldogsatAtlantic City Roses27-0Exh
NMAlbuquerque19618/26New York GiantsnDallas Cowboys28-10Exh
NVLas Vegas19648/29Oakland RaidersnHouston Oilers34-20Exh
NYBuffalo192010/3Buffalo All-Americansvs.West Buffalo32-6Off
NYRochester192010/3Rochester Jeffersonsvs.All-Buffalo10-0Off
OHCanton192010/3Canton Bulldogsvs.Pitcairn Quakers48-0Off
OHAkron192010/3Akron Prosvs.Wheeling Collegians43-0Off
OHDayton192010/3Dayton Trianglesvs.Columbus Panhandles14-0Off
OKTulsa192212/30Oklahoma All-Starsvs.Toledo Maroons0-0Exh
ORPortland19261/30Chicago BearsatPortland All-Stars60-3Exh
PAPhiladelphia192012/11Union A.A.vs.Canton Bulldogs13-7Off
RIProvidence192410/19Providence Steam Rollervs.Rochester Jeffersons3-0Exh
SCColumbia19539/9Pittsburgh SteelersnWashington Redskins21-14Exh
SDSioux Falls19618/5Dallas CowboysnMinnesota Vikings38-13Exh
TNMemphis192911/23Chicago BearsatMemphis Tigers39-19Exh
TXDallas192212/25Toledo MaroonsatSouthwestern All-Stars3-0Exh
UTOgden19448/30Washington RedskinsnBrooklyn Tigers14-7Exh
VARichmond192012/18Canton BulldogsatRichmond A.C.39-0Off
WASeattle19261/31Chicago BearsatWashington All-Stars34-0Exh
WIGreen Bay19219/25Green Bay Packersvs.Chicago Boosters13-0Exh
WVWheeling192111/13Columbus PanhandlesatWheeling Pros0-0Exh
WYCheyenne19449/10Fort Warrenvs.Brooklyn Tigers21-20Exh

* – It has been documented that the New York (Brooklyn) Brickley Giants played the Orange Athletic Club in Orange, New Jersey, on November 26th, 1921. But a game result/score has never been confirmed for this game. If it is ever confirmed, it would be the first major  pro football game played in the state of New Jersey.

The states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, and Vermont have never hosted a major pro football game.

 

Many of the games listed above only included one league participant. Listed below are the first league games played in each state.

First League (NFL, AFL, or AAFC) Game Played in Each State

Columns can be sorted by clicking on the titles in the header.

StateCityYearDateWon/TiedLost/TiedScoreType
ALBirmingham19489/11Green Bay PackersnWashington Redskins43-0Exh
ARLittle Rock19499/10Los Angeles RamsnPhiladelphia Eagles24-24Exh
AZTucson19549/15San Francisco 49ersnPittsburgh Steelers37-14Exh
CASan Francisco19271/9Los Angeles BuccaneersnDuluth Eskimos19-0Exh
CODenver19371/1Green Bay PackersnBrooklyn Dodgers21-13Exh
CTHartford192511/26Kansas City CowboysnCleveland Bulldogs17-0Off
DCWashington192111/27Canton BulldogsatWashington Senators15-0Off
DEWilmington19498/10Baltimore ColtsnBuffalo Bills28-12Exh
FLMiami19382/6Chicago BearsnWashington Redskins16-10Exh
GAAtlanta19469/28Brooklyn DodgersnMiami Seahawks17-7Exh
HIHonolulu19618/11Houston OilersnOakland Raiders35-17Exh
IADes Moines19479/10Los Angeles RamsnBoston Yanks24-0Exh
ILRock Island192010/3Rock Island Independentsvs.Muncie Flyers45-0Off
INEvansville192110/2Evansville Crimson Giantsvs.Louisville Brecks21-0Off
KSWichita19638/31Houston OilersnKansas City Chiefs23-17Exh
KYLouisville192112/4Columbus PanhandlesatLouisville Brecks6-0Off
LAShreveport192212/28Toledo MaroonsnMilwaukee Badgers17-0Exh
MABoston192512/9Providence Steam Rollervs.Chicago Bears9-6Off
MDBaltimore19429/7Washington RedskinsnGreen Bay Packers28-7Exh
MEBangor19599/5New York GiantsnGreen Bay Packers14-0Exh
MIDetroit192010/24Detroit Heraldsvs.Columbus Panhandles6-0Off
MNMinneapolis192110/30Minneapolis Marinesvs.Columbus Panhandles28-0Off
MOSaint Louis192310/14Hammond ProsatSt. Louis All-Stars0-0Off
MSJackson19698/16Kansas City ChiefsnCincinnati Bengals23-7Exh
NCDurham19529/6Chicago BearsnPhiladelphia Eagles37-7Exh
NEOmaha19499/14Los Angeles RamsnNew York Giants14-7Exh
NJEast Orange19299/29New York GiantsatOrange Tornadoes0-0Off
NMAlbuquerque19618/26New York GiantsnDallas Cowboys28-10Exh
NVLas Vegas19648/29Oakland RaidersnHouston Oilers34-20Exh
NYBuffalo192010/31Buffalo All-Americansvs.Rochester Jeffersons17-6Off
OHDayton192010/3Dayton Trianglesvs.Columbus Panhandles14-0Off
OKNorman19529/20Detroit LionsnWashington Redskins45-7Exh
ORPortland19468/18Brooklyn DodgersnChicago Rockets14-14Exh
PAPhiladelphia19249/27Frankford Yellow Jacketsvs.Rochester Jeffersons21-0Off
RIProvidence192510/11Providence Steam Rollervs.New York Giants14-0Off
SCColumbia19539/9Pittsburgh SteelersnWashington Redskins21-14Exh
SDSioux Falls19618/5Dallas CowboysnMinnesota Vikings38-13Exh
TNNashville193212/26Chicago BearsnBoston Braves25-0Exh
TXDallas19381/23Washington RedskinsnChicago Bears13-0Exh
UTOgden19448/30Washington RedskinsnBrooklyn Tigers14-7Exh
VARoanoke19499/10Detroit LionsnPittsburgh Steelers41-21Exh
WASpokane19468/24New York YankeesnBrooklyn Dodgers21-14Exh
WIGreen Bay192110/23Green Bay Packersvs.Minneapolis Marines7-6Off
WVCharleston193811/20Philadelphia EaglesnPittsburgh Pirates14-7Off

The states of New Hampshire and Wyoming have never hosted a league game, but they have hosted game between a league vs. a non-league opponent.

 

Additional Info

  • The first major pro football game played in the states of Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Nevada, and Wyoming were the only games played in those states.
  • In the first major pro game played in the state of Kansas (1936), the Brooklyn Dodgers crushed the semi-pro St. Louis Terriers 100-0. It was the last time an NFL team scored 100 points or more in a game.
  • The Chicago Bears were a participant in the first major pro football game played in the following states: AL, AZ, FL, MA, MN, OR, TN, and WA.


Acknowledgement: Game scores retrieved from Pro Football Archives were instrumental in putting together the content above.

 

Additional Reference: Pro-Football-Reference.com

 

  5 Responses to “First Major Pro Football Game Played in Each State (Official and Exhibition)”

  1. I love this site. Keep up the good work. Your research made mine easier in coming up with this historical piece:
    http://thesportsseer.com/2012/10/20/when-the-philadelphia-eagles-detroit-lions-and-los-angeles-rams-played-in-arkansas/

  2. Thanks for the compliments. The site is a lot of fun to produce, and it rarely ever feels like work. Great job on your article as well. I list the games and in the back of my mind I always wonder about the story behind them. It’s great when people tackle them.

  3. When I was a teenager I attended an exhibition football game between the Cowboys and the Eagles in Tulsa, OK.
    I have been trying to re

    When I was a teenager (1960s) I attended an exhibition football game between the Cowboys and the Eagles in Tulsa.
    I have not been able to find what year this game was played. Appreciate any help.

    Russ Bauer

    I can’t remember what year it was

  4. Sorry for the delay. I couldn’t log into my own site for a few days due to a glitch from my hosting service.

    According to my records the Cowboys and Eagles never played against each other in Tulsa.

    The Cowboys’ two games in Tulsa were against the Bears and Lions in ’65 and ’66 respectively.

    There was also an Eagles-Vikings game in Tulsa during the ’68 preseason.

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