One Brady Bunch actress ''felt sorry for'' Joe Namath when he visited the set

She was ''crazy about the guy and had a bit of a crush on him too'' until he showed up.

CBS Television Distribution

The Brady Bunch succeeded because of its core cast of eight. A domestic comedy only works if its family is believable. If Cindy and Jan don't feel like actual sisters, then the whole conceit of the show crumbles. We have to accept the fictional family dynamic as quickly as possible. It's the actors' natural chemistry that allows us to suspend our disbelief.

While the Brady family was inarguably the most crucial part of the show, viewers also responded strongly to the episodes which featured guest stars. In fact, according to Barry Williams' book Growing Up Brady: I Was a Teenage Greg, the guest stars are a constant point of conversation with fans. Many of the best-remembered episodes featured guest stars, like Davy Jones and Don Ho. However, Williams most fondly recalls the episode featuring the NY Jets' star quarterback, Joe Namath.

"In 1972, 'Broadway Joe' was something much larger than just a football hero. With his awards, personal mystique, mountains of press, and high-profile luxury lifestyle, he had become a bona fide superstar. The anticipation of his visit to our set had all of us really excited. We expected an entourage' we expected babes draped on each arm with spares following behind; we expected cheerleaders to do cartwheels over his every move. But none of that happened."

Williams laments the fact that there was such little time to spend with the guest stars. Hectic shooting schedules and a lack of free time on set meant that the cast rarely mingled with the one-off features. However, while they didn't get time to play ball together, Namath had just enough time to leave quite the impression on the young Greg Brady.

"What we did get," wrote Williams, "was a genuinely nice, genuinely down-to-earth guy, who wasn't at all flash, wasn't nearly as slick as we'd assumed, and wasn't nearly the invincible superjock we'd envisioned. Clobbered through season after season of abuse and injury, Joe's legendarily wobbly knees were obviously causing him an incredible amount of pain."

It seems Namath's knees weren't only an issue on the field.

"Ann B. Davis remembers that she was 'crazy about the guy and had a bit of a crush on him too' but that when he actually showed up, she just 'felt sorry for the man because he could barely walk.'"

Those injuries didn't stop Florence Henderson from mercilessly flirting with the football star, though, according to her onscreen son. 

Do you remember seeing Broadway Joe on The Brady Bunch? Were you a Jets fan, or did he clobber your favorite team? Let us know in the comments section below!

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28 Comments

FloridaTopCat 1 month ago
He was also funny in an episode of "Married With Children", some time later, like 1993!
phatkat1953 1 month ago
Well I don't remember seeing that episode I'll have to see them
GNOSTICTRACY 1 month ago
The doctor that did surgery on Nameth's knees saved my leg.
Rob GNOSTICTRACY 1 month ago
Ouch! Motorcycle?
KirwoodDerby 1 month ago
I believe this was the first episode of the final season. I remember tuning in to this episode and even at thirteen, the scenes with Mama th were absolutely cringe worthy. I can not and will not watch any episodes from this season. Bad, bad, bad tv.
cinamac 1 month ago
I always preferred Roman Gabriel!
Avie 1 month ago
"Do you remember seeing Broadway Joe on The Brady Bunch? Were you a Jets fan, or did he clobber your favorite team? Let us know in the comments section below!"

After golf, football has to be the stupidest game ever invented. That ought to answer your questions.
Rob Avie 1 month ago
I believe that the "stupidest game ever invented" title goes to Russian Roulette.
jvf 1 month ago
"The Brady Bunch succeeded because of its core cast of eight" Don't you mean nine? The show wouldn't have been as good without Alice!!!
RTJR 1 month ago
The very first football card that I ever collected was Broadway Joe (1968 Topps). I was hooked. Four months later, he goes and guarantees a Super Bowl win against the massively over-hyped Colts. For an 8 year old, what a role model. I still have that card, along with about 1,000 other newer Namath cards. He is still my favorite NFLer ever. There will never be another star like him. He's what Ali was to boxing, what Mantle was to baseball, what Orr was to hockey, and what Wilt the Stilt was to basketball. Today's players are pale comparisons. His appearance on BB has always been my favorite episode. I will admit that Davey Jones' appearance came close. Hey Hey It's the Monkees. Those shows take me back.
BrettLambert 1 month ago
I was not as much into sports was I was music so I would have been more impressed with Davey Jones and/or Desi Arnaz, specially loving the drums!
ERROL 1 month ago
been a "Willy-Joe" fan since the Tide days, just carried over to Jets.....
he would have been really great except for the knees
Stoney 1 month ago
My mom was a Jets fan because of Namath (she was maybe 19 or 20 when they won the Super Bowl). In honor of her memory, the Jets are the only NY-based team that this Georgia guy doesn't hate outright.
Null88 Stoney 1 month ago
Sport teams are owned by outsiders; staffed by outsiders who fly in.
The refs are working for Vegas.
Might as well cheer for AT&T or USSteel or McDonalds.



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AZKNIGHTWOLF 1 month ago

"The Brady Bunch succeeded because of its core cast of eight" Eight? Eight, really? Who are you leaving off? I hope not Ann B. Davis because the article is about her! The Brady Bunch succeeded because of its core cast of NINE!
BorisK 1 month ago
Good episode. No doubt Robert Reed flirted with Broadway Joe too ...
kwlcat 1 month ago
I think it was a core cast of 9. Which one are they missing?
Jon kwlcat 1 month ago
Probably Alice, who technically wasn't a Brady.
Dugkath 1 month ago
My wife grew up in the same town, and went to the same high school as him (different years).She waited on his Dad when she was a waitress. Joe was known around town as a juvenile delinquent 😆
tootsieg 1 month ago
Nobody could wear a fur coat like Broadway Joe. Nobody.
Beatseeker tootsieg 1 month ago
or pantyhose.... or nothing! (playgirl)
scott 1 month ago
I wonder how difficult it might have been to get him as a guest star? Did he agree right away? Did his agent talk him into it?
carsmith 1 month ago
My favorite episode! I love Joe Namath. ♥️
BorisK carsmith 1 month ago
Mine are the Davy Jones and 'Pork Chops and Applesauce' episodes.
joeyjoejoe 1 month ago
He was hurt and didnt play when I was a kid plus I’m a bears fan and we didn’t play the jets that much , but yes , i liked the guy and wanted to be like him
Bapa1 1 month ago
It would have been funny if he had thrown the football that hit Marcia in the nose. Touchdown!!
Tresix Bapa1 1 month ago
That probably would have killed her!
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