Thursday, May 9, 2019

Dick Vermeil's "Special" Special Teamers

By John Turney
The NFL's first-ever special teams coach was Dick Vermeil. He was hired by George Allen in April of 1969 to handle those duties.
In late May, 1969, the Eagles hired Marv Levy, who coached the kicking game for the Eagles but little information was given at the time about Levy's specific role for the Eagles. So, Vermeil was first but it is likely both were the first to be special teams coaches for the 1969 season.
In 1970 Vermeil left to be an offensive assistant for UCLA and George Allen hired Levy to replace him. Vermeil came back to the Rams from 1971-73 and in 1973 he was again the special teams coach.

Vermiel recently gave us a list of his top special teams players during his time in the NFL which spanned from 1969-82 and then from 1997-05.

"Frank Gansz Sr. was the finest special teams coach ever and will be forever the best. The finest most complete package as a coach I ever worked with."

"Ask any player that was coached by Frank, and they will tell you the same thing. He is worth a whole chapter in any coaching book ever written. No one will ever match his performance."

Rich Saul, LA Rams  "Best long snapper and coverage guy ever for me"
Pat Curran, LA Rams "Rookie in 1969"

Dante Hall, KC. "If he hadn't retired prematurely, he would have set new NFL return records"

Alvin Haymond, Los Angeles Rams 1969-71 "Second best returner"
Tony Horne, KR only, St. Louis Rams,  "Most consistent "

Pat Curran, Los Angeles 1969, 1971-73 "Snapped, blocked kicks, covered kicks".
Louie Giammona, Philadelphia Eagles 1978-82
Gary Stills, KC: 2001-05.
Charlie Clemons, 1997-99
London Fletcher, St. Louis Rams "rookie year 1998"

Dustin Colquitt, KC, 2005 "Best punter over-all"

Jeff Wilkins, St Louis Rams 1997-1999
Morten Anderson "Had  him at end of career with KC, not what he was"
Lawrence Tynes KC 2004-05

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