HOUSTON — Things you can lease: A car, a home and heavy machinery to name a few.
But leasing a professional quarterback? That's a little different.
It sounds just as bizarre now as it did back then. The year was 1964 and the Oilers had three quarterbacks on their roster, including future Hall of Famer George Blanda.
So, on Aug. 15, the team announced it had loaned Jacky Lee to the Denver Broncos. I mean, trade him? No, loan him. The Oilers go back and forth until it's ultimately called a “lend-and-lease.”
What is that?
Here’s the deal: Jacky Lee would play two years for lowly Denver and then return to Houston.
By making the unusual swap, Oilers owner Bud Adams said Jacky can “obtain valuable experience which he would not have been able to do playing behind Blanda.”
The American Football League had no issues with the deal, either. It was allowed under its bylaws and “it hurts nobody,” according to assistant commissioner Milt Woodard.
There you have it: The first and only lend-and-lease deal ever in American pro football.
As for Lee, he wasn't happy with Houston.
“I’m through here and I have no desire to come back,” he said.
But guess what? He did return after two subpar seasons with the Broncos.
After football, Lee spent 35 years in commercial real estate in the Houston area. You can probably guess the one deal he preferred not to talk about.