Green Bay Packers in the Hall of Fame: Forrest Gregg

(Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
(Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) /

He is the second-best-known Forrest G; and he is the best-known Forrest G who is not a fictional character.

Alvis Forrest Gregg played primarily at right tackle, but also some left guard for the Green Bay Packers. His career with the Packers began in 1956, his first year in the NFL, and recommenced in 1958, carrying on through the 1970 season (Gregg was in the military in 1957).

Also, Gregg was the head coach of the Packers from 1984 to 1987.

Born in the dinky town of Birthright in the northeastern part of Texas, Gregg was selected with the 20th pick in the 1956 draft – quite high for an offensive lineman.

Ignoring what he accomplished in 1971, his final season (which he played with the Dallas Cowboys), Gregg was on the winning team during the first two Super Bowls as a member of the Packers, and was an NFL champion three other times. 

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As for personal accolades, Gregg was selected for the Pro Bowl nine times, and for the All-Pro first team seven times.

Not only that, Gregg was named to the NFL’s virtual 75th Anniversary team in 1994, and to the 1960s all-decade team.

Based on all this official recognition, it should surprise nobody that Gregg was inducted into both the Packers Hall of Fame and the NFL Hall of Fame in 1977.

Perhaps the greatest compliment Gregg received was when Coach Vince Lombardi said that Gregg was “the finest player I ever coached.”

When you consider all the dominant players Lombardi coached, and how many of them are “in Canton,” that is really saying something – and Lombardi wasn’t one to say things just to get attention. To paraphrase a Dr. Seuss character, Lombardi “said what he meant and he meant what he said.”

With 187 games straight, Gregg held the Packers record for consecutive games played until that was exceeded by the irrepressible Brett Favre in 2003.

Last but probably not least, Gregg played in the “Ice Bowl” at Lambeau Field against the Dallas Cowboys on the final day of 1967, toughing it out, grinding it out, and battling down to the sweet finale when he blocked on the “photo finish ending” on the quarterback sneak by Bart Starr that won the game.

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Gregg currently makes Colorado Springs, Colorado his home.