Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Brian wolf » Thu Nov 25, 2021 1:18 pm

Youre right though, many believe it was strictly his line, which Emmitt smartly followed north and south while people dismiss his great vision, quickness, toughness, longevity and ability to break tackles. He could also run and pass block better than Jim Brown ever could.

With that line, Emmitt became the NFL's Alltime leading rusher, a record that will NEVER be broken but with another team --besides the Cardinals-- and another line, Emmitt still would have had 12-15,000 rushing yards I believe ...
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Brian wolf » Sun Nov 28, 2021 12:04 am

The year 1957 had many missed opportunities that could have changed-altered NFL History.

First, was the NFL draft that started in late 1956 but didnt end until early 1957 ... Despite being the most imposing, physically talented player in college football, RB Jim Brown is passed over by four teams, including the Packers TWICE before being picked by the Cleveland Browns, who only did it because the pick they wanted --Len Dawson-- was chosen by the Steelers before the Browns pick. Its pretty easy to see why, as racism reared its ugly head with teams worried about its sensitive fan base, though the 49ers didnt need another running back, though with Tittle, they may not have needed Brodie either. Its obvious why GB didnt take him but why not the Rams instead of Arnett ?
Was young GM Pete Rozelle worried about offending his fan base or just wanting his own magazine glamour-boy like Detroit had with Doak Walker earlier in the decade and GB with bonus pick Paul Hornung?
Had Rozelle drafted Jim Brown, the success of the team would have been much better and Rozelle might have tried for a piece of team ownership and never became Commissioner but who knows? Though Owner Reeves might not have bought into that ...

Had the Browns gotten Dawson would Weeb Ewbank and the Colts have taken Brown ? Weeb was shrewd taking future Hall Of Famer Parker but Brown would have been tempting ...

Also during 1957, Buddy Parker resigns as HC of the Lions.
Wilson does an excellent job replacing him while winning a championship but could the team had done the same thing for Parker ? Parker probably wouldnt have alternated Layne and Rote at QB but we dont know if Layne would have been hurt later in the year ... Parker should already have been voted into the HOF but had he coached this team to his third championship, it would have been definite. He may not have even went to the Steelers ...

Then, you also have to look at the Baltimore Colts. With Unitas in firm control, this offense becomes probably the best in football but two games keep the team from playing the Browns -- and QBs O'Connell and rookie Plum-- for the championship ...

With a 3-0 record and playing the Lions, the Colts build a 27-3 lead before WR Lenny Moore loses a crazy fumble that the Colts swore would go out of bounds, before the Lions aggressively recover and mount a furious comeback, where QB Layne gives Johnny U a lesson in running the two-minute drill as the Lions prevail with three TDs in the 4th Qrt, 31-27.
Then ... in wk 13 with still a chance to win the division, the Colts lead the 49ers 13-10 with less than two minutes left as Tittle starts to work the Niners down the field. After getting injured, rookie QB John Brodie comes in and throws the game winning TD pass to McElhenny with under 40 seconds left, though the Colts believe he pushed off to get open and it wasnt called. Had the Colts won either of these games, they might have won their first championship but would it have been a possible three-peat for 57-59, nobody knows, though many Colts players believed it was one of their best teams.
Yes, the team also lost to the Rams the final week of the season but had they beaten SF ... ??
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Brian wolf » Sun Nov 28, 2021 12:09 am

Sorry, wk 11, not 13 ... A 12 game season ...
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby 7DnBrnc53 » Sun Nov 28, 2021 1:40 am

Had the Browns gotten Dawson would Weeb Ewbank and the Colts have taken Brown ? Weeb was shrewd taking future Hall Of Famer Parker but Brown would have been tempting ...


Colts may have been a dynasty with Brown and Unitas together. That isn't even fair. Maybe Vince Lombardi isn't as lionized & worshipped as he is today with some of his rings on Johnny U's and Jim Brown's fingers. Also, would a Colt dynasty make it easier for a new stadium by the early-70's (probably not, but it is something to ponder)?
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Brian wolf » Sun Nov 28, 2021 11:34 am

My impression of the Browns seemed that they coddled or deferred to Jim Brown, where the Colts might have been different had they drafted him. With Ewbank, Brown could have still been the focal point as a runner with Unitas still developing but I believe Weeb, and especially Johnny, would have demanded that Brown become a better blocker, a role Ameche had learned as well and Unitas would have utilized with his great play calling ability. Possibly with the Colts, who didnt quite have the run-blocking line that the Browns had, Jim Browns running totals wouldnt have been so high but Unitas probably would have had fewer turnovers as well.
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby GameBeforeTheMoney » Sun Nov 28, 2021 2:19 pm

The Rams pick John Arnett makes sense -- USC star playing in LA....he wasn't an all-time great like Jim Brown but was a very good player. Remember, a lot of teams picked regional college stars back then. The Packers picked stars from Notre Dame and Michigan with their two picks before Cleveland. Remember, teams were often thinking in terms of attendance in those days and college football was still more popular than pro football in terms of drawing crowds.

The 1957 NFL Draft was pretty amazing -- especially the first round. Jim Brown is certainly on the short list for greatest of all time at his position, as is Jim Parker.

Speaking of drafts, here's another missed opportunity that this discussion reminded about -- the 1964 Broncos draft. Three HOFs and didn't sign any of them (Bob Brown, Paul Krause, Bob Hayes). They picked Dick Butkus in the first round the next year.
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Brian wolf » Sun Nov 28, 2021 2:31 pm

Great call Game ... yet a talent like Brown should have been a no-brainer. I have mentioned numerous times the talent that the Broncos squandered or got rid of during the 60s.
It seemed like they were a farm team for the Chiefs and Raiders. Yes, they utilized Gilchrist there but how do you leave a talent like Haynes out of your offense ?
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby 7DnBrnc53 » Sun Nov 28, 2021 6:08 pm

The Rams pick John Arnett makes sense -- USC star playing in LA....he wasn't an all-time great like Jim Brown but was a very good player. Remember, a lot of teams picked regional college stars back then. The Packers picked stars from Notre Dame and Michigan with their two picks before Cleveland. Remember, teams were often thinking in terms of attendance in those days and college football was still more popular than pro football in terms of drawing crowds.


Good point. Also, the NFL wasn't the only sport doing that. The NBA's Cincinnati Royals were able to draft Oscar Robertson with a territorial pick (I think they also got Jerry Lucas the same way). Also, the Canadiens seemed to get the best French-Canadian guys for years.
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby SixtiesFan » Sun Nov 28, 2021 6:54 pm

GameBeforeTheMoney wrote:The Rams pick John Arnett makes sense -- USC star playing in LA....he wasn't an all-time great like Jim Brown but was a very good player. Remember, a lot of teams picked regional college stars back then. The Packers picked stars from Notre Dame and Michigan with their two picks before Cleveland. Remember, teams were often thinking in terms of attendance in those days and college football was still more popular than pro football in terms of drawing crowds.

The 1957 NFL Draft was pretty amazing -- especially the first round. Jim Brown is certainly on the short list for greatest of all time at his position, as is Jim Parker.

Speaking of drafts, here's another missed opportunity that this discussion reminded about -- the 1964 Broncos draft. Three HOFs and didn't sign any of them (Bob Brown, Paul Krause, Bob Hayes). They picked Dick Butkus in the first round the next year.


The Great Teams Great Years book on the Rams said a player of Jon Arnett's skill set was what they (Sid Gillman was the coach, Norm Van Brocklin the QB) wanted. Arnett was a runner, receiver, punt and kickoff returner. He made the Pro Bowl his first five years (1957-61) being what was later called an "all purpose back."
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Re: Missed Opportunities That Could Have Altered NFL History

Postby Jay Z » Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:10 am

Brian wolf wrote:Great call Game ... yet a talent like Brown should have been a no-brainer. I have mentioned numerous times the talent that the Broncos squandered or got rid of during the 60s.
It seemed like they were a farm team for the Chiefs and Raiders. Yes, they utilized Gilchrist there but how do you leave a talent like Haynes out of your offense ?


With Brown, I think it's hard to project that level of performance when no one has ever done it. Jim Taylor would get close, following on Brown's heels. But a lot of the fullback types like Casares and Ameche, they tailed off after a couple of years. Brown did not have great receiving numbers his first year either, maybe that was a concern.

Rosters were also pretty tight at the time. Brown was a fullback. The Rams had Tank Younger and Joe Marconi, they both came back in 1957 and had pretty good years combined, so it could have been a need issue.
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