It’s been a busy week for a Green & White icon. Joe Namath has been here and there this week, doing national TV and local radio interviews, jetting from Florida to New York City to Canton, Ohio.
And now we just wanted to take a minute to wish a Happy 70th Birthday, Broadway Joe.
It’s no secret among Jets fans of a certain age that May 31 is Namath’s birthday. Exactly 10 years ago I did a feature in a North Jersey newspaper celebrating Broadway Joe’s 60th birthday. No other media outlets were attuned to that milestone back then. Now it’s a different story as several Websites have dedicated time and words to wishing Joe all the best and musing aloud how it’s possible that this symbol of the Jets, the AFL, rebelliousness and energy and youth and achievement in America of the Sixties has turned 70 on us.
We’re told that many fans of No. 12, who forever proclaimed the Jets No. 1 at the end of their Super Bowl III triumph over the Colts on 1.12.69, are gathering on the Jets’ Facebook page and on Joe’s Facebook page to offer him birthday wishes.
One of those could be Rex Ryan, head coach of the Jets, a first-hand observer of the Jets and Namath back in ’68, and still an admirer.
“The thing I will mention about Joe Namath, not only with the Jets organization but the National Football League, is that he was huge for the popularity of our sport, with, obviously, the Super Bowl III victory — that was great,” Ryan said Thursday. “I’ve always respected and admired Joe Namath, as I’m sure every Jet fan has.”
Hopefully Namath has enough quality time to celebrate his birthday today, but it has been and will be a busy end of the week. As we mentioned, Joe was booked solid with media engagements Thursday, the order of the day being to talk up the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Namath, who appears almost every year at the Canton shrine for the annual enshrinement ceremonies, this year has been beating the drums for the “new” Hall of Fame, with the completion of its two-year, two-phase “Future 50″ expansion and renovation project. He made his way to Canton today to be on hand Saturday for the Hall’s special grand-opening ribbon-cutting ceremony.
The Hall of Fame invites fans of Namath’s and of the great game of football to share thoughts, photos and stories on social media by using the hashtag #NewHOF. Click here for more on Namath and the Hall of Fame ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Tags: 70th birthday, Joe Namath, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Rex Ryan
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