Football Friday: Life Magazine’s Look at the NFL of 1960

Life Magazine's NFL 1960

This is one of the cooler sports photo galleries I’ve put together for you. This is a combination of published and unpublished images for a Life magazine article on the NFL and the ascent of pro football as a spectator sport. It ran in their December 5, 1960 issue and was called “Fans Go Ga-Ga Over Pro Football.”

The pictures in this gallery were taken by George Silk during the 1960 NFL season and seem to come from X main sources — four New York Giants home games (against the Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, St. Louis Cardinals, and Washington Redskins), a Giants film session, and a game between the Chicago Bears and Baltimore Colts (which I believe to be a home game for the Colts).

Included here is a photo of Eagles linebacker creaming the Giants’ Frank Gifford. I don’t think it’s the same hit as the one that produced that iconic photo, but it’s almost certainly the same game.


But before we get into the gallery, let’s look at the original Life cover — featuring Steve Myhra of the Baltimore Colts kicking off against the Chicago Bears — as well as an unpublished black & white version of the same photo.

Life Magazine (NFL 1960) cover - December 5, 1960

Steve Myhra (#65) kicks off for the Baltimore Colts in 1960

OK, here we go with the gallery. Just for reference, any photo with the Life watermark is an unpublished version of the photo, while the non-watermarked ones are from the original article.

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One Comment

  • Actually, I’m almost positive that picture of Bednarik and Gifford is of the hit that knocked him out. If you ever see video footage of it (I’m sure you can find it on Youtube), you’ll see that Bednarik made a solo tackle by hitting him right across the chest so hard it lifted him off his feet. Never saw a photo mid hit, but that matches with the video.

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