all those anti-Burk boos rolling out of the stands early in the game reminded me of the prominent fight spieler who kept on talking about white trunks, black trunks, and coming attractions while dissatisfied customers tossed things into the ring to add emphasis to lusty catcalls. Finally the football voice, too, had to take official notice. "But," he added, "it may be different before the end of the game." It was different. Thomason was doing most of the quarterbacking. There is no point in trying to kid a TV audience when everything going on can be seen and heard. Yet, for some strange reason, announcers try their best to avoid mention of fights on the field, arguments and other extracurricular activities. By the way, the business of pouring it on their own players is nothing new to Philly fans. They do a pretty thorough job of it in baseball, too. Perhaps that spirit has something to with its decline as a big league city.
STALWART GREEN BAY DEFENSE IS BEARS' CHIEF WORRY
NOVEMBER 4 (Chicago Tribune) - Defense again became a matter concern in the Chicago Bear camp yesterday as Coach George Halas reassembled the squad to prepare for Sunday's tussle in Wrigley field with the amazing Green Bay Packers. This time, however,
it is Green Bay's defense. The Packers, tied with the
Bears in the western division and victorious in their last
three starts, have already met Pittsburgh, Philadelphia,
San Francisco, Los Angeles - four of the league's powers
- in addition to Baltimore and the Bears. Against this
array, which includes the most potent point producing
machines in football, the Packers have allowed only 91
points, or a remarkably low average of 15.1 per game. Coach Lisle Blackbourn says, "Our defense never was too bad." This may not be the understatement of the year, but it at least is No. 1 for the week. No team yet has been able to maintain its scoring average against the Packers. The Bears made a touchdown and a field goal stand up for a 10 to 3 triumph at Green Bay, and the Packers lost the Pittsburgh game, 21 to 20, in the last minutes of play. San Francisco had to rally for two touchdowns to turn back the embattled Packers, 23 to 17. On the basis of the record it is surprising to find the Packers a seven point underdog in early wagering on Sunday's game, the 72nd in a series that began in 1920 and down through the years has developed into one of the most bitterly fought and spectacular rivalries in football. The fact that the Bears' attack has been gaining momentum each week and piled up 69 points against San Francisco and Los Angeles on the recent western trip, is of little solace to Halas, who learned long ago that the form charts mean little when Green Bay comes to town. The stress for the next three days, therefore, will be on ways of deceiving and circumventing roughhouse John Martinkovic, Clayton Tonnemaker, Dave Hanner and the rest of the Packer defensive corps. It was this trio that led the rout of the Eagles last week, when the Packers' defense set up four touchdowns and accounted directly for a fifth by intercepting two passes, recovering two fumbles, and throwing Adrian Burk for a 13 yard loss when he was going for the distance on fourth down deep in Packer territory. Halas, addressing more than 300 men at the Bear Alumni Fan club luncheon in the Bal Tabarin room of the Sherman hotel yesterday, said he hoped last Sunday's triumph would give the Bears the confidence and incentive to turn back the improved Packers. "Right now we can beat any club in the league," he said. "But so can Green Bay!" Halas revealed that assistant coach Luke Johnsos called the play that beat the 49ers and Ed Brown, who came off the bench cold to throw the pass, confided that he thought when the ball left his hands that he had overthrown Harlon Hill. "My mother didn't know I had thrown it,." Brown added. "And when my cousin told her, she got so excited they had to help her out of the stadium." Halas called George Blanda the greatest quarterback in the league now and indicated that Brown and Zeke Bratkowski, the two rookie stars, would have to stay on the bench until he cooled down. Better pass protection, with special emphasis on the blocking of Chick Jagade, were the reasons for Blanda's improved showing against Los Angeles and San Francisco, Halas said.
BEARS 6-POINT FAVORITES TO BEAT PACKERS SUNDAY
NOVEMBER 5 (Milwaukee Sentinel) - Oh, how those Bears love to play the Packers in Wrigley Field! Green Bay's last win over the Bruins at Chicago's North Side ball park was a 41-28 shellacking in 1952 - but that was only after an 11-year drought. Sunday, the Packers and Bears meet for the 72nd time at Wrigley field and the Bears are six point favorites to win their 43rd game in one of professional football's oldest rivalries. Both clubs are tied for third place in the Western Division. To the victor goes a lane in the title race. Kickoff is at 1:05 p.m....The 59-yard return of an intercepted pass by Bobby Dillon against the Eagles Saturday night was the third longest in Packers history. The longest was a 94-yard return by Rebel Steiner against the Bears in 1950 and the second best was 88 yards by Bob Summerhays in 1951 against the Eagles. Fred Cone's seven points against the Eagles (one field goal and four extra points) moved the former Clemson fullback into sixth place in the all-time Packers scoring. Cone now has a total of 206 points, moving ahead of Tony Canadeo. Don Hutson holds the all-time mark with 825 points. He is followed by Ted Fritsch (392), Clark Hinkle (373), Verne Lewellen (301) and Johnny Blood (224)...Tobin Rote established another all-time Packer record last Saturday when he completed his 426th pass in his five-year pro career. This mark breaks the standard set by Cecil Isbell of 419 set during 1939-42. Rote also moved ahead of Isbell in the number of yards gained with 6,102. However, Arnie Herber holds this record with 6,741 yards. In his last three games Rote has completed 52 passes in 95 attempts for a total of 646 yards and a passing efficiency of nearly 55 percent. He has had only two passes intercepted in those last three games...If the Packers can beat the Bears Sunday they will not only be a definite title threat but will have their best winning streak (four in a row) since 1944 when they won six straight and the World's Championship. Green Bay moves into County Stadium the following Saturday for a nationally televised game with the Colts. Game time is 7 o'clock. The telecast will be blacked out in Wisconsin.
50,000 WILL SEE PACKERS BATTLE BEARS
NOVEMBER 6 (Chicago Tribune) - The Chicago Bears yesterday were placed on an overtime schedule in preparation of their engagement against the Green Bay Packers in Wrigley field on Sunday. Linemen put in an extra hour after practice reviewing movies and undergoing a thorough briefing. Overtime also was the rule in the box office where the demand for tickets has surpassed anything since the glory days of 1941. Owner-Coach George Halas, always on the conservative side, predicted 45,000 would sit in on the contest. But with any kind of break in the weather, the throng will likely exceed the 47,960 who saw the San Francisco game on October 17. A crowd of 50,000 is possible. Intensifying of preparations testifies eloquently to the concern with which Halas is approaching the 72nd Packer-Bear contest. Halas sees more than just a remote chance of finishing in a playoff this year and he is in no mood to have his old enemies from the north blot out or obscure the vision. Moreover, no one is more aware of the Packers' recent improvement or precedents in the situation. For some inexplicable reason, the Bears the last three years have had difficulty rebounding the week after the annual two game excursion to the west coast. Last year, for instance, they were lucky to tie the Packers, 24 to 24, after playing two exceptional games - probably their best of the year - in California. Green Bay, of course, faces a task no less executing. The Packers, tied with the Bears, have just as good a chance of sneaking into the title finals. Like the Bears, they have come on late to arrive unexpectedly at a position of contention. Also like the Bears, their improvement has been attributed largely to better protection for their passer - Tobin Rote. Rote established an all-time Packer record in Philadelphia last week when he completed his 424th pass, and brought his total years gained to 6,741 for four and one-half seasons. These marks are particularly impressive in light of the fact that they erase the records set by Cecil Isbell, a legendary figure in the aerial history of football. Rote is having his best season. In the last three games, all Packer victories, he has completed 52 of 95 pass attempts for six touchdowns. Only two of his 95 attempts were intercepted and the opposition included, besides Baltimore, the Eagles and the Los Angeles Rams, two of the league's most powerful aggregations. In Green Bay yesterday, Coach Lisle Blackbourn announced that Clarence Self, one of the Packers' brightest defensive stars, would be moved from left linebacker to rookie Gene Whites' right halfback position and that Jim Psaltis, once a Chicago Cardinal, would start in Self's linebacker spot. White has an injured back and will be out two weeks.
LIKE OLD TIMES; BAYS, BEARS TO DRAW 45,000
NOVEMBER 6 (Milwaukee Sentinel) - It will be like old times Sunday at Wrigley Field in Chicago - the Packer-Bear game is expected to draw over 45,000. Kickoff time is 1:05. The incentive, of course, is watching two of the most improved clubs in the NFL. The winner will still be in title contention. The game will be televised over the ABC network, the only state station being WTMV in Madison. The telecast is being blacked out in a radius of 125 miles of Chicago. Green Bay will be out to avenge a 10-3 setback by the Bears earlier this season before coming to life with three victories in a row. The Bears lost the Detroit Lions, San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Rams. Chicago defeated the Baltimore Colts, the 49ers in a return engagement besides the first one over the Packers. Game with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Bears and 49ers gave the Packers three straight losses. Then came the victory string - Rams, Colts and Philadelphia Eagles. The Bears hold a 42-24 edge in the all-time series, with six games ending in a tie. Green Bay's last win at Wrigley Field was 41-28 in 1952. Both clubs are in good physical shape. Defensive halfback Gene White will be the only Packers sidelined. He wrenched his back in the Eagle game. The Bears will be without defensive halfback Ray Smith.
PACKERS TAKE FINAL DRILL ON BEARS' FIELD
NOVEMBER 6 (Chicago Tribune) - The Green Bay Packers, scheduled for a showdown with the Chicago Bears tomorrow in one of the more important NFL games of the day, will break with precedent today to take a final drill in Wrigley field. For years the Packers have completed their preparations at home, boarded an afternoon train and arrived in the Loop the evening before the Bear game. The Bears, meanwhile, continued their long drills and extra lectures yesterday, as Coach George Halas sought to forestall the possibilities of a letdown after the two spectacular games on the Pacific coast. No changes in the Bear lineup are contemplated by Halas, beyond those defensive shifts which worked out so successfully against San Francisco last week. They involve using John Helwig at the left wingback position on defense, guard Bill George backing up on that side and Paul Lipscomb, once a Packer hero, playing the middle guard.
PACKERS FACE BEARS TODAY BEFORE 50,000
NOVEMBER 7 (Chicago Tribune) - What remote
championship hopes the Chicago Bears and Green Bay
Packers have dredged up for themselves out of recent
spectacular successes will be at stake in Wrigley field
today at 1:05 o'clock when these two old rivals meet
for the 72nd time. As many as 50,000, included the
largest Wisconsin delegation in years, are expected to
sit in on the contest which restores the Bear-Packer
series to a position of championship importance for the
first time in a decade. Not since 1944 have the Bears
and Packers, at one time perennial contenders, met
with the title hopes of each at stake. Both already have
lost three games, but the way National league clubs
have been taking each other by the throat of late, it is
entirely possible that today's winner could wind up in
the divisional playoffs, if it can survive the remainder of
the season without a defeat or a tie. Today's loser,
however, can stop dreaming. Green Bay's belated
spurt, after opening the season with three consecutive
defeats, including a 10 to 3 defeat by the Bears, has
been based on one of football's best defenses and the
passing of Tobin Rote. Bear success so far has been
the result of careful planning in draft meetings, where
George Halas has been striving for three seasons to
come up with the proper secondary talent and passing.
He drafted the secondary strength in Ray Smith and
Stan Wallace. The quarterbacking also has been
improved by smart drafting, but this turned out to be
more of an indirect approach when the signing of two
highly touted rookies spurred veteran George Blanda
to great heights. Entering today's game, Blanda is
regarded in many sectors as the best quarterback in
the league. Besides the customary intense and bitter
struggle between the Bears and Packers, today's game
will be a contest between Blanda and Rote, and Harlon
Hill and Max McGee, a pair of rookie receivers. Hill, a
lanky, fleet taciturn young father from beyond the city
limits in Alabama, moved into the front ranks of
outstanding receivers last week by catching four touchdown passes as the Bears defeated the San Francisco 49ers. He unquestionably is the best receiver that has come along in years and already is being compared to the immortal Don Hutson. Green Bay, however, considers him not one whit better than its own McGee, a 6 foot 2 inch, 200 pound rookie from Tulane, who opened the season as a punter and in recent games has sparked as a pass catcher. He has caught only 12 passes, but gained a total of 231 yards and scored five touchdowns.