Popeye is unsuccessful in trying to feed Swee'Pea his spinach lunch. After a demonstration of the vegetable's benefits fails, he tells his adopted son a story about how he was a weak boy until, during a football game on a field, he first ate the vegetable.
As the flashback begins, little Popeye leads his team against young Bluto's, which is entirely composed of corpulent boys. Little Olive is in the audience, cheering happily. The match begins with Bluto's team scoring repeatedly and, when little Popeye gets the chance to to score, he is not as successful. Bluto further scores aided by his team's assuming different shapes to help him, such as a tower and a steamroller. A young J. Wellington Wimpy keeps the score which has gone to 49-0 in Bluto's team's favor as he repeatedly makes the goal. Her enthusiasm turning to sadness, Olive prompts Popeye to eat spinach, and the flattened-by-"steamroller" little athlete gets out an equally flattened spinach can. Eating his vegetables re-invigorates him and allows him to twice escape a pile of Bluto's large minions, and to score for the first time. After this, he repeatedly makes passes to himself which allows him to rapidly score, and the match ends 55-49 in Team Popeye's favor.
Swee'Pea is more receptive to spinach after this tale; eating it strengthens him and allows him to kick his bowl like a football with such force that it knocks Popeye out upon hitting him on the chin. Swee'Pea then imitates Popeye by singing his song.
- The Football Toucher Downer at the Internet Movie Database