Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Lombardi in Philadelphia — 1960

The photo for today comes from the 1961 Green Bay Packers Yearbook, the second year that it was published. We see head coach Vince Lombardi deep in thought on the sideline, smoking a cigarette to release the nervous tension. Green Bay ended up losing to the Philadelphia Eagles 17-13. This was the Packers’ first championship game under Lombardi, and he would not lose another championship or even a playoff game while in Titletown.

From the 1961 yearbook, in an article by Art Daley of the Green Bay Press-Gazette:

“There wasn’t a diehard in Packerland who didn’t think the Bays would pull it out in the final seconds. (Bart) Starr moved the team 57 yards in the last seven plays, only to fall eight yards short. ‘If we could have added a couple more seconds at the end of each half, we would’ve been all right,’ Lombardi quipped when it was all over... the Bays were just seven yards from a TD when ‘time’ forced Hornung to try for his ill-fated field goal before the half as well... playing in the title (game) was a great tonic. They hope to taste it in Green Bay in 1961.”

They would indeed.

1 comment:

mw said...

Legend is that Starr hit Jim Taylor with a pass with less than a minute left. Taylor was driving, churning, and spining to the end zone when Concrete Chuck Bernarick, (last of the two way players, both center and middle linebacker for the Eagles), tackled him and sat on Taylor until time ran out.

It is a bit difficult to imagine that Lombardi passively stood on the side line as Bernarick prevented Taylor from getting up. On the other hand, Bernarick was a tough, mean, ouright, vicious tackler, (ask Frank Gifford). Maybe Taylor simply could not get up. Bernarick was Butkus before Butkus came into the league (1965). He earned his Hall of Fame election the old fashioned way. He tackled opponents and they would not get up. They say that when Benarick tackled you, it felt like running into concrete.