In the off-season, the team acquired quarterbackBabe Parilli from the Oakland Raiders, himself a former starter for the NFL's Green Bay Packers. After starting the season 2-3, the team fired head coad Lou Saban and replaced him with Mike Holovak. The change was a positive one, as the team would finish on a four game winning streak, including a season-finale shutout of the San Diego Chargers. Their record of 9-4-1 was good enough for 2nd place in the Eastern Division, and one game behind division leader Houston. This season was the first in which the team used their "Pat the Patriot" logo on their helmets.
Home games in bold.
All of the following players appeared in at least one game for the 1961 Boston Patriots. Players new to the team in 1961 are in bold