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Hall of Fame Quarterback Len Dawson Dies at 87

Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Len Dawson, who led the Kansas City Chiefs to victory in Super Bowl IV, has died at the age of 87, his family confirmed in a statement to KMBC in Kansas City, where he’d previously worked as a broadcaster.

"With wife Linda at his side, it is with much sadness that we inform you of the passing of our beloved Len Dawson," the family said. "He was a wonderful husband, father, brother and friend. Len was always grateful and many times overwhelmed by the countless bonds he made during his football and broadcast careers.

"He loved Kansas City and no matter where his travels took him, he could not wait to return home."

Dawson was placed in hospice care on August 12, according to ESPN.

The Hall of Famer had worked for the Chiefs for 47 years, which included 14 seasons playing quarterback and 33 as a broadcast analyst.

Dawson had previously spent three seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers (1957-59) and Cleveland Browns (1960-61) before joining the then-Dallas Texans — who later moved to Kansas City and rebranded as the Chiefs — of the American Football League prior to the league’s merger with the NFL in 1970, which included winning three AFL championships (1962, 1966, 1969), two of which clinched appearances in the first and fourth Super Bowl games ever played. 

The Chiefs became the second AFL team to win a Super Bowl — following the New York Jets’ famous upset of the heavily favored Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III — by defeating the Minnesota Vikings, 23-7, with Dawson winning the Super Bowl MVP award, becoming the fourth consecutive quarterback to do so following the Green Bay Packers Bart Starr (Super Bowls I and II) and the Jets’ Joe Namath.

Dawson threw for 142 yards, one touchdown, and one interception on 12 of 17 passing, which included a 46-yard throw to Otis Taylor to move ahead 23-7 in the third quarter.

The Ohio native finished his pro football career with 28,711 yards, 239 touchdowns, and 183 interceptions on 2,136 of 3,741 passing and was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987.

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