With 65 days left until the start of the NFL season, our countdown to the big day continues. Thursday, Sept. 4, is the day when the Green Bay Packers travel to Seattle to take on the Super Bowl Champion Seahawks. Over the course of the next 65 days we focus on the number that represents the days remaining … today it’s number 65.
Yesterday, we took a look at #66 and one of the best ever to play the game – the late Ray Nitschke. What Nitschke brought to Green Bay is the stuff of legends – legends so great that the good people of Green Bay named a bridge after the man. Not only did he solidify the Vince Lombardi-led Packers teams of the 1960s, but he did it with such conviction and character that he is viewed as not only one of the best ever to play in Green Bay, but one of the best ever to play the game.
But today we move on to #65 – another number worn by some pretty good Packers.
Most recently, Lane Taylor has worn the number and before him was Sampson Genus.
But if you go back to those who wore the number between 1982 (Ron Hallstrom) and 2010 (Mark Tauscher) you’ve got two solid contributors to Packers teams.
Both Hallstrom and Tauscher have Wisconsin ties, as well. After playing 11 years with the Packers, Hallstrom retired and opened a snowmobile/marine retail and repair shop in Minocqua where he has resided as a hard working, respected businessman and member of the community.
Tauscher also has strong ties to Wisconsin – in fact, he was born in Marshfield and grew up in Abbotsford.
Hallstrom wasn’t a talker, nor was he very cooperative with the media as a player and was misunderstood by many working in the media – including Bud Lea who called him one of the biggest jerks he ever covered as a sports journalist. However, Lea also placed Sterling Sharpe into that same category – pretty good company for Hallstrom.
As a first round draft choice out of the University of Iowa, the Massachusetts-born player was a first round selection by the Green Bay Packers in 1982. He would go on to play an unheralded, but solid career for the Packers. In fact, in the 11 years he was in Green Bay he played in a total of 174 games. He didn’t start a single game his first two seasons before moving into the starting offensive line as a guard in 1984.
Though Hallstrom played for some subpar teams through the mid- to late-1980s, he was a member of the Packers during their Don Majkowski-led season of 1989 and was also on the line when Brett Favre made his big splash on the scene in the 1992 season.
He would leave Green Bay after the 1992 season in a contract dispute – playing his final year for the Eagles in Philadelphia before retiring to Minocqua.
While Hallstrom was the quiet, uncooperative type with the media, Tauscher was a fan favorite throughout his career and was well-liked by the media. In fact, Tauscher has gone on to his own broadcasting career in retirement.
As a high school athlete in Auburndale, Tauscher excelled in football and basketball. He was twice All-Conference, was an Honorable Mention All-State selection and team MVP as a senior while playing football.
Without a scholarship to a major college program, he walked on at the University of Wisconsin. Though he didn’t play much his first two years, he began making inroads as a junior and senior on the Badgers’ heralded offensive line. In fact, he was part of the unit that blocked for Ron Dayne during his Heisman Trophy-winning season.
However, following college, he didn’t garner much attention as a pro football player. The Packers selected him in the seventh round of the 2000 NFL draft (number 224 overall).
FOR AN IN-DEPTH LOOK AT EVERY NUMBER AND THE PLAYERS WHO WORE THEM, WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND “PACKERS BY THE NUMBERS: JERSEY NUMBERS AND THE PLAYERS WHO WORE THEM,” BY JOHN MAXYMUK.
When Earl Dotson got hurt early in 2000, the rookie Tauscher was thrust into the starting lineup where he thrived for the next 11 years. Before he was done, Tauscher had played 134 games for the Packers and while he earned a Super Bowl ring in 2010 with the team, it had been an injuryr-riddled conclusion to his career. 2010 would be his final year. He was hurt that last season and had played the first four games before sitting out the rest of the year. That’s when another rookie, Bryan Bulaga, took over the right tackle position.
Tauscher retired after that 2010 season.
Though Hallstrom and Tauscher came from opposite ends of the spectrum as far as character and talent on the football field (Hallstrom being a first round pick and Tauscher a seventh round selection), they both excelled on the field for the Green Bay Packers.
The following are Hallstrom’s career statistics:
The following are the career statistics for Mark Tauscher:
Here is a list of all the Packers players to have worn #65: