While the New York Jets’ win over the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III marked the first time that an AFL team beat an NFL team on the biggest stage, Super Bowl IV was the game in which the AFL made its ultimate mark. Many writers and sports betting experts had felt that the Jets’ win over Baltimore was a fluke, and so when the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings took the field against the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs for Super Bowl IV, many felt that they were destined to win and put the NFL back on top. However, Len Dawson completed 12 of 17 passes for 142 yards and a touchdown, and the Chiefs rolled to a 23-17 win to prove that the AFL was in fact on par with the NFL. While that underdog story was enough to satisfy fans of the game, it isn’t the real story behind that 5Dimes win, which features a ton of controversy.
The fact that the Chiefs won as underdogs gave fans reason to cheer, but when the outcome led to a federal investigation in to sports gambling, all of that was changed. The story blossomed after Donald Dawson was arrested while carrying more than $400,000 and Len Dawson’s phone number. That the Vikings played so bad was part of the problem, as Kansas City scored three field goals to build a 17-0 lead in the first half and never looked back. While it never led to any proof that the game was in fact “fixed”, there are still online betting fans that wonder today whether outside influence had any effect on the outcome of that contest.