I read this in a sports trivia book from the 1990’s two decades ago but have never found a source for it, but then again it does seem hard to google.
Basically the story went, sometime in the 60’s or 70’s there was an NFL game where the home team held a tight lead over the other and in the final minutes of play the home team lost enough players to injuries that they were dangerously close to a forfeit which was completely unprecedented. Not wanting to lose the game nor take that black mark the team on the spot decided to shore up their lines by having a few people volunteer from the stands (it was a home game for them) who had formerly played high school or college football and just take up space so they could release the remaining pro players to other positions. While the fans didn’t do especially well they held their ground enough for the home team to pull off a narrow victory.
Any truth to this or was this one of those things where the trivia book either exaggerated or made-up an incident?