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Old 07-08-2011, 06:17 AM   #1
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John Mackey died last night at 69. He paved the way for the greatest, Sharpe. He was instrumental in getting benefits, called the 88 plan for his number, for players suffering from dementia and alzheimers thought to be caused by football contact. RIP and thank you for your contribution to the game.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=6745011

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Old 07-08-2011, 06:35 AM   #2
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I was very sad to hear about this yesterday. Good man.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=71ntnqB0pyc

Tried to find the piece ESPN did on him and his dementia... if anyone can find it, please post.
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Old 07-08-2011, 06:37 AM   #3
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Thanks for starting this thread. He was the best tight end ever.
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Old 07-08-2011, 06:43 AM   #4
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Thanks for starting this thread. He was the best tight end ever.
This
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:00 AM   #5
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Thanks for starting this thread. He was the best tight end ever.
Very lucky I got to see him play. If there was any player from the 60's who could translate to today's game, it is Mackey. He just never went down on the first hit, could adjust to bad throws, had great hands and was a devastating blocker. He played a little mean always willing to deliver a blow after the catch.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:17 AM   #6
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Very lucky I got to see him play. If there was any player from the 60's who could translate to today's game, it is Mackey. He just never went down on the first hit, could adjust to bad throws, had great hands and was a devastating blocker. He played a little mean always willing to deliver a blow after the catch.
Very true. He took the TE position from basically little significance or much like a FB today to a vital position.

Disclaimer: I find the FB position significant and wish we had a Howard Griffith again.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:26 AM   #7
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Mackey was a great TE.

his more important contribution to the game is that being done on his behalf (and others) who retired without pensions or health care benefits sufficient to cover their medical care when their football injuries catch up to them later in life.

i'm not a fan of unions or collective bargaining, but i do believe that the situation with the NFL is unique in that an absurd amount of TV money is now being generated for the benefit of current NFL players and only a pittance is allocated to help the guys who actually built and popularized the league, especially since many of those guys are developing concussion related mental illnesses later in life.

Bruce Laird (another ex-Colt) has been leading the fight in this area.

http://fourthandgoalunites.com/2011/...urth-and-goal/

Laird and others have been fighting this battle for a number of years and the NFLPA (especially under Gene Upshaw) refused to be part of the solution.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3225087
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Old 07-08-2011, 03:46 PM   #8
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Old 07-08-2011, 03:53 PM   #9
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I remember watching him on NFLN, that guy was a beast...RIP.
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:01 AM   #10
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When I first started watching football and really paying attention Johnny Unitas was my favorite player, and the Colts were my team. Mackey was one of those guys that you loved to watch because of the way he played the game, all out, never go down easy, always fight for that extra yard. Gotta love players like that.
I had seen stories about John that said he didn't even remember playing in the NFL, let alone being a Superbowl Champion and Hall of Famer. That to me was just so sad, to have those memories taken from him. RIP John Mackey, I hope you and Unitas are playing catch again, laughing and remembering the Glory Days.
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:06 AM   #11
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I've heard the name, guess I've never paid attention. Might look the guy up sometime and see what he did.
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:35 AM   #12
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I've heard the name, guess I've never paid attention. Might look the guy up sometime and see what he did.
http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-h...Mackey-Feature

i miss the Baltimore Colts. the real Colts. not those quiche eating nancy boys who play in Indiana.

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Old 07-09-2011, 12:49 PM   #13
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http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-h...Mackey-Feature

i'm miss the Baltimore Colts. the real Colts. not those quiche eating nancy boys who play in Indiana.
I was born in Baltimore and moved to Colorado in 1971 which was perfect timing given that the Colts were about to ship Unitas off to SD (he was finished) and the team was beginning to slip and started renewing with lesser players. I started becoming a Bronco fan during the 1971 season.

However Baltimore during the late 60's was not supporting the really good teams they had in those days. In spite of going to 4 World Series in 6 years, the Orioles were having difficulties drawing significant numbers. Even the Colts, which experienced sellouts and support much like the Broncos were starting to wane. I actually walked up to ticket booth on game day and payed ticket value to the 1970 AFC Championship game vs. the Oakland Raiders. Can you imagine that happening in Denver No way.
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:52 PM   #14
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I was born in Baltimore and moved to Colorado in 1971 which was perfect timing given that the Colts were about to ship Unitas off to SD (he was finished) and the team was beginning to slip and started renewing with lesser players. I started becoming a Bronco fan during the 1971 season.

However Baltimore during the late 60's was not supporting the really good teams they had in those days. In spite of going to 4 World Series in 6 years, the Orioles were having difficulties drawing significant numbers. Even the Colts, which experienced sellouts and support much like the Broncos were starting to wane. I actually walked up to ticket booth on game day and payed ticket value to the 1970 AFC Championship game vs. the Oakland Raiders. Can you imagine that happening in Denver No way.
times were different then. 1970 was an era where players still had offseason jobs to make ends meet and the NFL was not a cash cow like it is now.

i grew up with the Bert Jones teams of the mid-70's, so i just missed the Unitas era. became a fan of Denver in 1977 as my #2 team. who couldn't like the Orange Crush? i hated the Raiders and Steelers with a passion and the Broncos stomped their way into the superbowl by beating those Raiders teams and i was hooked (i also got that vibrating football game for Christmas that year and the teams were Denver (in orange) vs Dallas (in white)). kids who grew up in the me-first-look-at-me era of pro sports definitely missed out. back when i was a kid, you'd still see Colts and Orioles players around town and they weren't treated like royalty... you could walk up and talk to them and give them a pat on the back. they were part of the city. that doesn't exist now.

BTW, Bert Jones is one of the most underrated QBs in recent memory. if not for a pre-season injury that sidetracked his career for awhile in 1978 when he was on the verge of stardom, he would have gone on to be much better known than he is. in alot of ways, Tebow reminds me of Jones. their styles were different, but both were gamers. Stabler was like that. a few other QBs of that era too. nowadays, alot of NFL QBs are p******s. Jones would leave it all out on the field. Tebow is like that too. if you're looking for a guy who comes off the field as soon as he can after getting an "ouchie", just take a look at the current QB for the Bears.

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Old 07-10-2011, 01:21 AM   #15
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times were different then. 1970 was an era where players still had offseason jobs to make ends meet and the NFL was not a cash cow like it is now.

i grew up with the Bert Jones teams of the mid-70's, so i just missed the Unitas era. became a fan of Denver in 1977 as my #2 team. who couldn't like the Orange Crush? i hated the Raiders and Steelers with a passion and the Broncos stomped their way into the superbowl by beating those Raiders teams and i was hooked (i also got that vibrating football game for Christmas that year and the teams were Denver (in orange) vs Dallas (in white)). kids who grew up in the me-first-look-at-me era of pro sports definitely missed out. back when i was a kid, you'd still see Colts and Orioles players around town and they weren't treated like royalty... you could walk up and talk to them and give them a pat on the back. they were part of the city. that doesn't exist now.

BTW, Bert Jones is one of the most underrated QBs in recent memory. if not for a pre-season injury that sidetracked his career for awhile in 1978 when he was on the verge of stardom, he would have gone on to be much better known than he is. in alot of ways, Tebow reminds me of Jones. their styles were different, but both were gamers. Stabler was like that. a few other QBs of that era too. nowadays, alot of NFL QBs are p******s. Jones would leave it all out on the field. Tebow is like that too. if you're looking for a guy who comes off the field as soon as he can after getting an "ouchie", just take a look at the current QB for the Bears.
Interesting you brought up Bert Jones. I was going to mention him as the last real bright spot for the Baltimore Colts era but felt I had deviated enough from Mackey. He was all you said he was and the injury was devastating to a guy who really had HOF ability. Great arm and could make plays.

Good comments about players of that era having to create off season revenue. The fan base knew where alot of these guys worked in the off season. Brooks had some unfortunate luck with sporting good stores, Unitas had restaurants and if I remember interest in a bowling alley, Ameche and Marchetti had the fast food chain before McDonalds. Donovan had a bar (before my time). My mother remembers alot more about this than I do since she grew up in Baltimore and followed the Colts since they started. As for some of the Broncos, I remembered seeing Gradishar around Golden working for Coors (I think). Upchurch was a courier for United Bank where my Dad worked. It certainly was a different era where the fans could more easily identify with the players from an economic standpoint. I have some early 60's Oriole yearbooks where it mentions what the players did for income in the offseason. It seemed that most of Colts and Orioles of the day lived out in the nice areas around Timonium but still in areas where the fan base could reach them, not behind a gate.
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Old 07-10-2011, 09:50 AM   #16
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Ameche and Marchetti had the fast food chain before McDonalds.
http://www.ginosgiant.com

it's trendy to say that In N Out has the best fast food hamburgers these days, but i'd take a Gino's Giant over a Double Double any day!

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