1971 Baltimore Colts season
The 1971 Baltimore Colts season was the 19th season for the team in the National Football League. Led by second-year head coach Don McCafferty, the Colts appeared to be on the verge of winning the AFC East again after beating the Miami Dolphins 14–3 in the penultimate game of the regular season. However, the Colts lost the final game of the season at home to the New England Patriots, dropping them to 10–4 and the wild card berth. They lost to the Dolphins in the AFC Championship game. The Baltimore defense gave up a total of 140 points for 14 regular season (10 PPG) & in their four defeats, they lost by 15 points total.
|1971 Baltimore Colts season|
|Head coach||Don McCafferty|
|General manager||Don Klosterman|
|Home field||Memorial Stadium|
|Division place||2nd AFC East|
|Playoff finish||Won Divisional Playoffs|
Lost Conference Championship (Dolphins) 0–21
|1971 Baltimore Colts staff|
|1||September 19||New York Jets||W 22–0||1–0||Memorial Stadium|
|2||September 26||Cleveland Browns||L 13–14||1–1||Memorial Stadium|
|3||October 3||at New England Patriots||W 23–3||2–1||Schaefer Stadium|
|4||October 10||at Buffalo Bills||W 43–0||3–1||War Memorial Stadium|
|5||October 17||at New York Giants||W 31–7||4–1||Yankee Stadium|
|6||October 25||at Minnesota Vikings||L 3–10||4–2||Metropolitan Stadium|
|7||October 31||Pittsburgh Steelers||W 34–21||5–2||Memorial Stadium|
|8||November 8||Los Angeles Rams||W 24–17||6–2||Memorial Stadium|
|9||November 14||at New York Jets||W 14–13||7–2||Shea Stadium|
|10||November 21||at Miami Dolphins||L 14–17||7–3||Orange Bowl|
|11||November 28||at Oakland Raiders||W 37–14||8–3||Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum|
|12||December 5||Buffalo Bills||W 24–0||9–3||Memorial Stadium|
|13||December 11||Miami Dolphins||W 14–3||10–3||Memorial Stadium|
|14||December 19||New England Patriots||L 17–21||10–4||Memorial Stadium|
|New England Patriots||6||8||0||.429||4–4||6–5||238||325||W1|
|New York Jets||6||8||0||.429||4–4||6–5||212||299||W2|
Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972. 
The team made it to the playoffs as a No. 4 seed and traveled to Cleveland to play the Cleveland Browns in the divisional round. The Colts led 14–0 at the half and would cruise to a 20–3 win. They then traveled south to play the Miami Dolphins and tried to make it to their second consecutive Super Bowl. Colts QB Johnny Unitas was intercepted three times as they were shut out 21–0.
|Playoff Round||Date||Opponent (seed)||Result||Record||Game Site||Attendance|
|Divisional||December 26, 1971||at Cleveland Browns (4)||W 20–3||1–0||Cleveland Municipal Stadium|
|Conference Championship||January 2, 1972||at Miami Dolphins (1)||L 0–21||1–1||Orange Bowl|
- "Plunkett bumps Colts from lead". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. December 20, 1971. p. 1, part 2.
- "Colts owner trades club for Rams". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. July 14, 1972. p. 1, part 2.
- "Colts' owner now sole owner of Rams". The Bulletin. (Bend, Oregon). UPI. July 14, 1972. p. 12.
- Maule, Tex (August 14, 1972). "Nay on the neighs, yea on the baas". Sports Illustrated. p. 67.
- Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2015-Aug-14.
- NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book, Workman Publishing Co, New York,NY, ISBN 0-7611-2480-2, p. 297