1947 NFL season

1947 National Football League season
Regular season
East Champions Philadelphia Eagles
West Champions Chicago Cardinals
Championship Game
Champions Chicago Cardinals

The 1947 NFL season was the 28th regular season of the National Football League. The league expanded the regular season by one game from eleven games per team to twelve, a number that remained constant for fourteen seasons, through 1960.

The season ended when the Chicago Cardinals defeated the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL Championship Game on December 28.

Major rule changes

Division races

Starting in 1947, the NFL teams played a 12-game schedule rather than 11 games. The twelfth game proved to be crucial for the Steelers, Eagles, Cardinals and Bears. In the Eastern Division, Pittsburgh took a half-game lead over Philadelphia after a 35–24 win in Week Five. On November 30, the Eagles won the rematch, 21–0, to take a 7–3–0 to 7–4–0 lead. The same day, the Cardinals lost to the Giants, 35–31, while the Bears beat Detroit 34–14; the 7–3–0 Cards were a game behind the 8–2–0 Bears in the Western Division.

In Week Twelve, the Cardinals beat the Eagles, 45–21. Pittsburgh beat Boston 17–7, while the Bears lost to the Rams, 17–14. The result was that the Steelers finished at 8–4, and the 7–4 Eagles had to win their last game. The Cardinals and Bears were both at 8–3, and the Western title would go to the winner of their December 14 season-closer. A crowd of 48,632 turned out at Wrigley Field to watch. The Cardinals won the game, 30–21, and the right to host the championship. The same day, Philadelphia beat Green Bay, 28–14, to force a playoff with Pittsburgh.

Final standings

W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, PCT= Winning Percentage, PF= Points For, PA = Points Against Note: The NFL did not officially count tie games in the standings until 1972

Eastern Division
Philadelphia Eagles 840.667308242
Pittsburgh Steelers 840.667240259
Boston Yanks 471.364168256
Washington Redskins 480.333295367
New York Giants 282.200190309
Western Division
Chicago Cardinals 930.750306231
Chicago Bears 840.667363241
Green Bay Packers 651.545274210
Los Angeles Rams 660.500259214
Detroit Lions 390.250231305


See: 1947 NFL playoffs

Home team in capitals

Eastern Division Playoff Game

NFL Championship Game

League leaders

Statistic Name Team Total
Passing Yards Sammy Baugh Washington Redskins 2938
Completion Percentage Sammy Baugh Washington Redskins .593 (210-for-354)
Touchdown Passes Sammy Baugh Washington Redskins 25
Rushing: Yards Steve Van Buren Philadelphia Eagles 1008
Rushing: Touchdowns Steve Van Buren Philadelphia Eagles 13
Receiving: Yards Mal Kutner Chicago Cardinals 944
Receiving: Catches Jim Keane Chicago Bears 64
Receiving: Touchdowns Ken Kavanaugh Chicago Bears 13
Total Points Scored Pat Harder Chicago Cardinals 102
Punting: Average George Gulyanics Chicago Bears 44.8
Interceptions Frank Reagan New York Giants 10
Frank Seno Boston Yanks 10


  1. Strickler, George (February 20, 1965). "Sixth N.F.L. official to watch scramblers, clock". Chicago Tribune. p. 1, sec. 2.
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