Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Pro Football Journal
2014 All-Pro Team


Pro Football Journal
2014 All-Rookie Team



Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Dave Parks, Early Career Greatness

LOOKING BACK
by TJ Troup

Credit: Philadelphia Cards
There have been many receivers who have attained greatness at some point in their career. Since it will be his birthday tomorrow on Christmas day; a chance for me to pay tribute to a receiver I saw play in person in the mid-sixties who was on his way to a Hall of Fame career:  Dave Parks. The criteria is as follows: only 7 men who pre-Super Bowl caught at least 160 passes, for at least 2,750 yards, and at least 20 touchdowns over the course of 36 games.

They are as follows;
1. The immortal Don Hutson from the beginning of the 1942 season through the first 5 games of 1945. He caught 208 for 3,486 yards, and 45 touchdowns.
Don Hutson, Colorization by John Turney
2. Tom Fears during the first three years of his career caught 212 passes, for 2,827 yards, and 20 touchdowns.
Tom Fears. Colorization by John Turney
3. Pete Pihos last three years of his career (led the league in catches all three) caught 185 passes for 2,785 yards, and 27 touchdowns.
Pete Pihos. Colorization by John Turney
4. Raymond Berry, beginning with the last two games of 1957 through the first 10 games of 1960 caught 203 passes for 3,190 yards, and 33 touchdowns.
Raymond Berry. Colorization by John Turney
5. Del Shofner from the second game of '61 through the 10th game of 1963 caught 163 passes, for 3,038 yards, and 30 touchdowns.
Del Shofner. Colorization by John Turney
6. Bobby Mitchell converted from running back for the 1962 campaign through the first 8 games of '64 caught 176 passes, for 3,433 yards, and 24 touchdowns.
Bobby Mitchell. Credit SIKids.com
7. Dave Parks from the last 9 games of his pro bowl rookie season in 1964 through the 1966 season caught 172 passes, for 2,880 yards, and 24 touchdowns.

Leg injuries and leaving the 49ers contributed to Parks lack of production for the remainder of his career. Watching him run his patterns, his all out effort, and athleticism in catching the ball, and finally his determined running ability after the catch were sure impressive to watch.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dandy Don and the Single Back Offense

EXCELLENT 16-GAME STRETCH BY MEREDITH 
by T.J. Troup


As a 15-year old reading Street & Smith's pro football in late summer of '66 reading about the improvement of the Dallas Cowboy offense in '65. Statements that Dallas had Meredith roll out more as the key element is only partially true. Watching film of Dallas the second half of '65 (2-5 the first half) saw that Tom had the Dallas offense in a single back wing alignment much of the time.

Yes, Dandy Don did roll out, but much more important with Hayes's speed, and three other receivers quickly into their patterns. The Cowpokes go 5-2 and "earn" a Playoff bowl berth. Mel Renfro was moved to offense in '66 to further this alignment and with his speed and athletic ability no doubt he would have contributed. Injury allowed free agent Dan Reeves to get playing time; which he took advantage of especially as a receiver).



Using 16 games as an evaluation of Dandy Don (last 7 of '65, and first 9 of '66) he completed 230 of 436 for 4,265 yards, with 37 going for touchdowns, and 21 intercepted. The most impressive part of his passing stats you ask? 9.78 yards per pass, which is Otto-esque!



Ok, guys your thoughts?

Monday, December 22, 2014

Warren Sapp's Lost Sack Title

LOOKING BACK
by John Turney

The 2000 NFL season was a good one for 3-techniques, well, at least two if them. The previous season Warren Sapp was voted the NFL Defensive Player of the Year by the AP and PFWA. In 2000 La'Roi Glover of the New Orleans Saints was voted the NFC Defensive Player of the Year by the KC Committee of 101. Sapp followed up is award-filled 1999 season with 16.5 sacks, tied with Trace Armstrong of the Miami Dolphins for second in the NFL. Glover led the NFL with 17. Or did he?

 On Sunday, November 26, 2000, the Saints played the Rams in St. Louis, and in that game Glover recorded 3 sacks on Trent Green. Here is the first as listed in the Gamebook
Credit: NFL.com
It shows Glover sacked Green, forced a fumble, which was recovered by Joe Johnson. However, in looking at the clip from YouTube, it shows that Glover hit Green low, but it was Joe Johnson, who stripped the ball from Green and then, in a bang-bang fashion, Glover took and empty-handed Green to the turf. It took Pat Summeral and John Madden, the Fox commentators calling the game, three replays to get the call right.



Since 1987 Elias Sports Bureau had a policy to review sacks if there was a question as to who should get credit, but usually the review was at the request of a team that had an interest in the scoring. If there was no beef, it stood as scored at the time. However, were it reviewed it may have led to Glover finishing with 16 sacks and Joe Johnson with 13, leaving Sapp and Armstrong as the sack champions for the year.

It is easy to see this was the type of play that needed further review, but it somehow slipped through the cracks. I contacted Elias that week to suggest they look at it, but I never heard a word back. At the Super Bowl in Tampa I ran into Seymour Siwoff at the media center and asked why his crew never got back, but he didn't know, but did tell me he wished I had pushed a little harder because they wanted to "get it right".

A review, at any rate, might have concluded the scorer in St. Louis was right anyway, or perhaps a split sack could have been considered. But, in a season like this, with a resurgence of several young and exciting 3-techniques, one of whom may be the NFL Defensive Player of the Year it brought to mind this play.

So, 15 years later, congratulations are in order for Warren Sapp and Trace Armstrong, the unofficial sack leaders of the 2000 NFL Season.

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