Profootballtalk.com has always been innovative in their look at the inner and outer workings of the NFL – and this is brought to light in their most recent delve into probing the minds of pro football fans.
Mt. Rushmore. We all know what it is and what it stands for … it honors four of America’s greatest leaders – Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt.
Well, in keeping with that format, profootballtalk.com is surveying fans from each of the 32 NFL teams to nominate their four best representatives. So far, the call has gone out to eight teams, including the Packers, for nominations: Washington Redskins, New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, and Philadelphia Eagles.
C’mon, now how easy is it for teams like the Bucs, the Panthers and even the Falcons – teams that have been around for such a short time in comparison to some of the founding franchises like the Packers, Bears, Giants, Eagles, Redskins and so forth – to select their four most influential.
It’s a bit tougher for Packers fans to narrow down 94 years of players, coaches and administrators to such a small number.
There’s just one rule – everyone gets their kick at the can and there will be no comments that belittle the choices of others … understand? Everyone gets their opinion heard on this one. Keep the comments clean and to the point – thanks.
So, without belaboring the point, here’s my selections to be on Mt. Rushmore Packers. Explanations follow:
• Curly Lambeau
• Vince Lombardi
• Jerry Kramer
• Brett Favre
Curly Lambeau is a no-brainer – founder of the franchise; player; coach; the man who made it all possible through tough times. Without Lambeau and George Halas, there would be no National Football League. An innovator, Lambeau is the rock of the franchise. They named the greatest stadium after him for cripes sakes.
Vince Lombardi, like Lambeau, is a no-brainer. If Lambeau was the rock of the franchise, Lombardi was the foundation that was laid upon the rock. He led the resurgence of not only the Green Bay Packers, but of the entire NFL during the 1960s – a pivotal time when the league gained respect exponentially. Without his leadership, imagination, heart and desire, this league simply wouldn’t be what it has become today – the greatest game on the face of the planet.
Jerry Kramer – Most would say Bart Starr, Forrest Gregg, Ray Nitschke or even Herb Addlerley, but to me Kramer is the best representative of the Packers from the 1960s and the epitome of the Packers Way. He played his entire career for the Packers, was named to the All-First 50 Year Team, made the block that defined the Packers, and did it all without blowing his own horn. Why he isn’t in the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a mystery we all wonder about. He represented a generation and is still seen as the man who helped make Lombardi’s teams what they were – a dynasty.
Brett Favre – Ok, put the torches and pitchforks down all you Brett-haters out there. The simple fact of the matter is that without Favre, there would be no Packers resurgence of the 1990s that propelled the team into the 2000s and has continued to this day. Favre is the standard-bearer of the modern Packers team. He has broken every record known to mankind and put Green Bay back on the NFL map. Simply put, he’s in the top three players in all of Packers history. He deserves a place on Mt. Rushmore Packers.
I told you this would be difficult. There are so many names not making the cut: Starr, Nitschke, Adderley, Taylor, Hornung, White, Canadeo, Blood, Hutson, and even Rodgers – among hundreds more.
Take your shot. What’s your choice?