5

December

Hall of Famer Dave Robinson chats with ALLGBP.com

Dave Robinson joined ALLGBP for a phone interview. Photo courtesy Packers.com.Dave Robinson joined ALLGBP for a phone interview. Photo courtesy Packers.com.

Dave Robinson joined ALLGBP for a phone interview. Photo courtesy Packers.com.

Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Packers linebacker Dave Robinson joined me for a phone interview Dec. 4. Needless to say, the 72-year-old Robinson had some great stories and a first-hand account of the Vince Lombardi-era Packers.

“He used to say there were players in the league that were bigger than us, stronger than us, faster than us, could jump higher,” Robinson said of Lombardi. “But we had that certain something, he said, that he saw that made you a Green Bay Packer. He took that little something and nurtured it.”

Robinson pointed out that people seem to lose sight of the fact that Lombardi was the also team’s general manager during his legendary run in Green Bay.

“On our defense, 10 of the 11 people  on our defense Vince Lombardi had acquired as the general manager,” Robinson said. “He was a big offensive coach, but he was sharp enough to acquire 10 of 11 (on defense). The only one he didn’t acquire was Ray Nitschke.”

Of course, Lombardi was the one who took Nitschke and turned him into a starter upon his arrival.

Robinson will be honored today (Dec. 4) in his hometown Moorestown, N.J. as part of the “Hometown Hall of Famer” banquet, presented by the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company. He spoke of his time growing up in New Jersey, going to college and meeting Joe Paterno at Penn State and, of course, the current Packers and the Aaron Rodgers situation.

Check out the whole interview below. Dave made it very worth your 15 minutes.

 

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Follow @MJEversoll

Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.

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2

February

Packers News: Dave Robinson elected to Hall of Fame

Packers Hall of Fame LB Dave Robinson

Packers Hall of Fame LB Dave Robinson

Former Packers linebacker Dave Robinson has been elected as a senior member to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

A defensive end at Penn State, head coach Vince Lombardi converted Robinson to linebacker, where he’d become a key part of the Packers’ championship defenses.

Robinson was nominated as a Senior Committee candidate in August.  According to PackersNews.com, Robinson is the third Packer to be elected to the Hall of Fame as a senior finalist, joining running back Tony Canadeo in 1974 and defensive tackle Henry Jordan in 1995.

Jerry Kramer was a senior finalist in 1997 but was not elected to the Hall of Fame.

Robinson is the 11th Packer from the Lombardi era and the 22nd Packer overall to be elected into the Hall of Fame. The other Hall of Famers from the Lombardi era are Herb Adderley, Willie Davis, Forrest Gregg, Paul Hornung, Henry Jordan, Ray Nitschke, Jim Ringo, Bart Starr, Jim Taylor and Willie Wood.

Prior to Saturday’s announcement, the last Packers player to be elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame was defensive end Reggie White in 2006.

Robinson played 10 seasons with the Packers from 1963 to 1972 and two seasons with the Washington Redskins. He appeared in 155 regular-season games throughout his career and was selected to the 1960s all-decade team.

Joining Robinson in Canton are coach Bill Parcells, wide receiver Cris Carter, defensive  tackle Warren Sapp, guard Larry Allen, tackle Jonathan Ogden and defensive end Curley Culp.

 

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Follow @MJEversoll

Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.

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27

October

Fabulous New Book From Sports Illustrated: Football’s Greatest

Sports Illustrated - Football's Greatest

Click on Image to Buy

I was lucky enough to get my hands on a review copy of  a new book titled “Football’s Greatest” from Sports Illustrated. This massive (10′ x 13′, 288 pages) hard cover book is one of those books any serious football fan must have sitting on their bookshelf.

The book is a group effort by seven Sports illustrated senior writers and editors who cover the NFL. They’ve taken on the painstaking job of ranking the NFL’s historical best of the best in over 20 categories. Best quarterbacks, best linebackers, best stadiums, best franchises, etc.

Whether you’re a Packers fan or a fan of any of the “Other 31,” it’s easy for me to say you’ll love this book.

If you are a Packers fan, I can tell you that your team is very well represented, with 22 selections in 17 categories, including three #1 rankings and 14 in the top five. I can tell you that naturally, Vince Lombardi was selected as the greatest coach in NFL History, and there is one Packers player omitted that really rankles me. I don’t want to be a spoiler, so you’ll have to read the book to find out who the other Packers selections are.

To pick up a copy of the book, click on the image above. Also, look for our Packers prediction contest before the Packers – Jaguars game. The person with the most accurate game prediction will win a copy of the book.

For some more details about the book, here is the official press release from SIBooks:

Who Are Football’s Greatest?

Sports Illustrated’s team of experts answers the questions pro football fans have been debating since the pigskin started flying

New book sets the All-Time Top 10 in every category—from positions to teams to coaches and rivalries—with best football movies, stadiums, and uniforms mixed in as well

NEW YORK—As the NFL approaches the midpoint of the 2013 season, Sports Illustrated’s pro football experts have created the ultimate book to help settle, and probably continue, the debate for the gridiron’s best ever. FOOTBALL’S GREATEST, on sale today, names the Top 10 in more than 20 categories not just by position player, but also the best stadiums, rivalries, coaches and even trades. The book also looks at the most underrated players in the history of the NFL and includes hundreds of classic images and the storytelling that only the writers of Sports Illustrated can provide.

2

June

Green Bay Packers Video: Oneida Nation Walk of Legends

This video shows all of the monuments that comprise the  mile-long walking tour known as the Green Bay Packers “Walk of Legends. A full description of each stop and their location can be found below the video.

On your next trip to Green Bay, be sure to visit the Walk of Legends:

Thirteen monuments are dedicated to Packers Players or coaches:

Vince Lombardi, at Brown County Veterans Arena/Former Packers Hall of Fame Building, 1901 S. Oneida St.

Bart Starr, at Brown County Veterans Arena/Former Packers Hall of Fame Building, 1901 S. Oneida St.

Jerry Kramer, WLUK/Fox 11 Studios, 787 Lombardi Ave.

Don Hutson, Saranac Glove Co., 999 Lombardi Ave.

Fuzzy Thurston, Hudson-Sharp Machine Co., 975 Lombardi Ave.

Max McGee, Hudson-Sharp Machine Co., 975 Lombardi Ave.

Reggie White, corner of Reggie White Way and Lombardi Avenue

Jim Taylor, near corner of Bart Starr Drive and Tony Canadeo Run

Johnny Blood McNally, near corner of Reggie White Way and Tony Canadeo Run

Paul Hornung, in front of Champions Sports Bar & Grill ,1007 Tony Canadeo Run

Ray Nitschke, in front of the Cambria Suites, 1011 Tony Canadeo Run

Tony Canadeo, on Tony Canadeo Run, behind Brett Favre’s Steakhouse, 1004 Brett Favre Pass

Brett Favre, Brett Favre’s Steakhouse, 1004 Brett Favre Pass

Eleven monuments reference specific eras in Packers’ history, along with a one-word theme meant to capture the spirit of that era:

Pride (1895-1918), at Brown County Veterans Arena/Former Packers Hall of Fame Building, 1901 S. Oneida St.

Drive (1919-28), outside Hilton Garden Inn, 1015 Lombardi Ave.

Power (1929-33), outside Hilton Garden Inn, 1015 Lombardi Ave.

Talent (1934-38), will be installed in September at Saranac Glove Co., 999 Lombardi Ave.

Valor (1939-48), Prestige Office Center, 935 Lombardi Ave.

Vision (1949-58), Prestige Office Center, 935 Lombardi Ave.

Glory (1959-68), outside Marty’s Boston Crab, 875 Lombardi Ave.

Honor (1969-78), outside Marty’s Boston Crab, 875 Lombardi Ave.

Faith (1979-88), near the Lombardi Avenue entrance to the Tundra Lodge Resort and Waterpark, 865 Lombardi Ave.

Esteem (1989-1998), on the west side of Pizza Hut, 859 Lombardi Ave.

Spirit (1999-present), on the west side of Pizza Hut, 859 Lombardi Ave.

13

July

It’s Time to Right this Wrong – Jerry Kramer Belongs in the NFL Hall of Fame

JERRY KRAMER, G, GREEN BAY PACKERS

Career Highlights:

Played 11 Seasons for the Green Bay Packers, 1958-1968

Played in 4 League Championship games and two Super Bowls

Earned 5 Championship rings.

5-Time All-Pro and 3 Pro Bowls

 

The Case for Jerry Kramer:

A fourth round draft pick in 1958, (selected after Jim Taylor and Ray Nitschke), Kramer earned a starting job immediately. As a rookie, the 6′ 3″, 250-lb Kramer quickly gained the reputation as a tenacious player that could hold his own against the best defensive tackles. In 1959, a fiery new coach came to town and soon recognized Kramer’s talent. Years later, Vince Lombardi would say of Kramer, “He didn’t know how good he was…”

Lombardi helped develop Jerry Kramer into an All-Pro NFL guard.  Kramer became the key blocker to the success of the famous Green Bay Packer sweep. Along with fellow guard Fuzzy Thurston, it was Kramer’s job to provide the inside “seal” Vince Lombardi famously talked about, keeping pursuing linebackers or defensive backs away from Jim Taylor and Paul Horning.

While Hall-of-Fame membership has eluded Jerry Kramer, fame itself has not. In the historic Ice Bowl game against the Dallas Cowboys, Kramer threw the most famous and recounted block in the history of the NFL, giving Bart Starr just enough room to score the winning TD. Kramer also appeared in one of the most famous Sports Illustrated covers ever, the classic photograph of Kramer carrying Vince Lombardi off the field after the Packers’ Super Bowl II victory.

Kramer was famous for his physical ailments, injuries and multiple operations. Kramer underwent 22 surgeries in 11 seasons, his many  scars earning him the nickname “Zipper”. Despite all of these obstacles, Kramer made it onto the field to play in 129 regular season games in his 11 years. As Bart Starr once said, “When Jerry wasn’t on his deathbed, he was making life miserable for defensive tackles.”

As if that wasn’t enough, Kramer also filled in as the Packers’ placekicker for two seasons. His three field goals helped the Packers win the 1962 championship game against the New York Giants, 16-7. He tallied 65 points in 1962 and was the team’s leading scorer the following season with 91 points.

27

May

Nordic Burial? Why The Minnesota Vikings in L.A. Would Be Bad For The Green Bay Packers

In light of the non-occurrence of the apocalypse this past Saturday, what I am about to write and do may be a sign that the end is indeed near after all.

With the courtroom football dominating the headlines for the NFL for the past couple months, one story has flown under the radar.

This story has a direct impact on the Green Bay Packers as well as the rest of the NFC North—the Minnesota Vikings and the team’s battle to get a new stadium approved by the Minnesota legislature. In these tough times, getting a government to help fund such a deal is a very difficult prospect.

For those who don’t know the whole story, owner Zygi Wilf is desperately trying to get a new stadium built for the Vikings. While the push has been occurring for a few years now, it became all the more urgent with the collapse of the Metrodome’s roof last winter. It remains unclear if the stadium bill will be approved or not.

Should the Vikings not get the new stadium they want, there is growing concern the Wilf family could move the Vikings out of Minnesota to another city, most likely Los Angeles.

Until the team rented Brett Favre from the archives of the Packers, the team was struggling to sell out home games, though the emergence of Adrian Peterson helped fill some seats.

An average NFL fan would assume that seeing Minnesota losing the Vikings would be a cause for celebration and joy Packers fans. Perhaps a fairly large contingent of Cheeseheads would agree.

If that’s the case, then this Cheesehead is not among them.

BLASPHEMY! you say. Not quite. While I agree defending the Vikings is normally a violation of the Ten Commandments of Packer Fandom, this is not a normal situation. In fact, I’d argue that the Packers would actually be hurt by the Vikings leaving Minnesota.

How? Well, first is the long history and strong rivalry between the two franchises. Both teams have been battling for supremacy in the NFC Central and later the NFC North for the past two decades. Favre joining the Vikings in 2009 stoked further an already potent fire. Throw in the fact that both teams are in neighboring states and you have a classic rivalry.

23

September

Green Bay Packers Vs Chicago Bears: Great Moments From a Classic Rivalry

In the very first meeting between the Packers and the Bears in 1921, there was a single moment that would foretell a future of heated battles. Chicago’s John (Tarzan) Taylor threw a sucker punch that broke the nose of Packers tackle Howard Buck. It would prove to be the opening salvo in what became a long and tenuous rivalry between Green Bay and Chicago.

7,000 fans at Wrigley field watched the Bears shut out the Packers that day by a score of 20-0. While a mere 200 miles separates these two cities, the differences couldn’t be greater. Small town Green Bay vs. big city Chicago. In 1921, Chicago was the second largest city in the country with a population of 2.7 million people. Green Bay was a blue-collar paper mill town with a population of only 31,000 people.

But while the cities’ demographics are at opposite ends of the spectrum, they do share a common bond, one of football greatness.

With Curly Lambeau and George Halas steering the ship, these two teams established themselves early on as the standard to aspire to. The Packers have won the most Championships in NFL History (12) and the Bears are second all-time with nine. The Bears have won 17 Division Championships, the Packers 13.

A total of 52 Pro Football Hall of Fame members (28 for the Bears and 24 for the Packers) have played in this rivalry. Names like Bronco Nagurski, Johnny Blood McNally, Red Grange, Don Hutson, Sid Luckman, Bart Starr, Gayle Sayers, Paul Hornung, Dick Butkus, Ray Nitschke, Walter Payton, Bret Favre.

These two teams epitomized what football should be. As renowned sports author Dick Schaap once said, “If you want to draw a picture of football, you just draw Ray Nitschke’s face and Dick Butkus’ face. That tells you all you have to know about the game.”

Over the 90 years of this rivalry, there have been many moments that helped define this rivalry. Let’s take a look at just a few that epitomize what this rivalry is all about..

1924: Ejected for fighting: The first time players were ever ejected from an NFL game for fighting was naturally during a Packers-Bears game. Bears end Frank Hanny and Packers end Walter Voss were tossed from the game before the end of the first half, as verbal sparring led to fisticuffs. Hanny would be ejected from a Bears-Packers game once again in 1926 and the pattern of nastiness had been established.