ROOKIES OPEN PACKER DRILLS
JULY 25 (Green Bay) - Coach Vince Lombardi wore a grin Friday after the Green Bay Packers opened drills for their 41st NFL season. Lombardi was delighted by the hustle of the 38 rookies and 7 veterans on hand for the coach's first day of field work with the team he took over last fall. Remaining veterans were slated to arrive today. Among the NFL veterans on hand was offensive guard Fred Thurston, obtained from the Baltimore Colts in a trade. The 6-1, 245-pound Thurston said he was happy to be with the Packers because he now makes his home near Green Bay. The work of rookie halfbacks George Dixon of the University of Bridgeport and Tim Brown of Ball State Teachers brought a special salute from Lombardi. They showed a lot of speed as did end candidates Ken Higgenbotham of Trinity College and Buddy Mayfield of South Carolina.
PACKERS, LIONS TRADE 1ST STRING TACKLES
JULY 27 (Green Bay) - The Green Bay Packers announced a trade of first string right tackles with the Detroit Lions today. After two years at Green Bay, Oliver Spencer will return to Detroit, where he has an insurance business. In return, the Bays will get Ken Russell, 23-year old former Bowling Green star who is starting his third NFL season. No cash was involved in the swap. The Packers asked waivers on ends Charles Anderson of Drake; Chuck Brockmeyer of Miami of Ohio, and Harry Hauffe of South Dakota; backs Leroy Hardee of Florida A&M, and Willie Jones of Indiana, and tackles Ken Kerr of Arizona State and Dick Nearents of East Washington State.
PACKERS TRADE FERGUSON TO STEELERS
JULY 28 (Green Bay) - Fullback Howie Ferguson has been traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers for an undisclosed future NFL choice, the Green Bay Packers announced today. The 28-year old veteran, signed by the Bays as a free agent in 1953, was averaging 4.5 yards per carry - equal to his best year - when he was put on the injured reserve list midway in last season with an injured shoulder. In 1955 he was second in rushing only to Baltimore's Alan Ameche, gaining 859 yards in 92 carries.
PASSING EMPHASIZED AS BAYS TAKE THEIR FIRST SCRIMMAGE
JULY 29 (Green Bay) - Coach Vince Lombardi is wasting no time polishing the Packers' aerial game. The emphasis was on pass patterns in the 2-a-day drills Monday and the first scrimmage Tuesday afternoon involved the veterans and rookies featured pass-protection work. The four defensive linemen were given blocking aprons by the action was swift and upsetting as the defensive linemen seemed to give the quarterbacks some working room. At least plenty of passes were completed. Blocking upfront with authority at times were Willie Taylor, Bob Skoronski, Forrest Gregg, Fred Thurston, Jerry Kramer, Dick Grogg and Steve Meilinger. The rough action offered the entire staff - Lombardi and aides Phil Bengtson, Bill Austin, Norb Hecker, Red Cochran and Tom Fears - a good opportunity to check their prospects under more advanced fire. To keep the action fresh, alternate groups were used throughout. One highlight was the speed of Bill Butler, the halfback who is being tried on defense. The Berlin, Wis., ace who says he hasn't been timed since he ran a 10.4 century as a freshman in high school, lost Max McGee once in a pass rundown and then caught up with him. And Maxie is no slow poke! The action was filmed and the picture will help the coaches determine the ability of the rookies. This scrimmage was preceded by a controlled head-knocking session with an offensive lineman opposing a defensive lineman or linebacker while a quarterback handed the ball off to a back. The back would proceed at full speed through the hole provided by the one offensive lineman. If this lineman missed, the back had to face the defenser head on. There were some ringing smashups and the players applauded at times for a good hit. The applause meter hit a high spot once when Lew Carpenter got off a good crack. There was one casualty - Tom Braatz, the Marquette end who received a cut over his eye....The Packer Alumni Association could have had a meeting on the practice field sidelines yesterday. The formers on hand were Ted Fritsch, who stoked a few memories with Fears, John Martinkovic, Deral Teteak, Fred Cone and Alex Wizbicki. Cone is up from Mobile, Alabama visiting his wife's folks while Wizbicki is traveling this area for a liquor concern out of Milwaukee. Teteak, now a Wisconsin coaching aide, is visiting with Fred Marsh, also a Badger coach...Late arrival Hank Gremminger took his first workout Tuesday morning. Ken Russel, the tackle obtained from the Lions for Ollie Spencer, was due in today. He was driving from Detroit.
LOMBARDI PUTS WEBB, 3 OTHERS ON WAIVERS
JULY 30 (Green Bay) - Head Coach Vince Lombardi of the Green Bay Packers sent his 56-man squad through another limited contact session Wednesday, with the comments that "it's all new to all of them." "Usually the veterans carry out the plays and show the new men how it's done, but the vets are in the same boat with the rookies," Lombardi said. "It's going to take time, that's all." Lombardi put four men on waivers. They were Bob Webb, passing sensation from St. Ambrose College; guard Larry Hall of Missouri Valley; halfback Tom Newell of Drake and tackle Bob Eiting who had no college experience. "Webb just wasn't good enough," Lombardi said. "He didn't have enough speed." Fred Thurston and Ken Russell, offensive tackles, and defensive halfback Bob Freeman - all obtained in recent trades - have reported and are in there fighting for first-string assignments, Lombardi said. There have been no injuries on the Packer roster of 56, which is four under the maximum for training, and 21 players must still be cut before the season begins.
BILL FORESTER, RINGO AGAIN LEAD PACKERS
JULY 31 (Green Bay) - The Green Bay Packers plan to use the same men who guided their professional football team the past three years as field captains in the 1959 campaign. Coach Vince Lombardi announced Wednesday that Jim Ringo, veteran center from Syracuse, and Bill Forester, a linebacker from SMU will be team captains again. Ringo will be offensive captain and Forester will act on defense. Both are seven year veterans in the NFL and have held their posts under three coaches. The Packer coach also named a six-man committee that will confer with him on player problems. Named to the committee are Ringo and Forester, Dave Hanner, a defensive tackle; Bart Starr, quarterback; Forrest Gregg, a guard and Emlen Tunnell, a defensive back. Lombardi expressed satisfaction with the condition of his men after sending them through two spirited workouts Wednesday. He was not satisfied, however, with the passing, contending it was not sharp enough.
PACKERS GET TACKLE
JULY 31 (Green Bay) - The Packers Friday acquired tackle Tom Saidock, a two-year veteran with the Eagles, for an undisclosed draft choice. At the same time, the club picked up Roger Wypcznski, who was put on waivers by the Redskins. The rookie tackle, who played at St. Norbert, is 260 and 6-5. The 29-year old Saidock packs 260 pounds on a 6-4 frame and will strengthen the Packers' defensive tackle corps, manned by veterans Dave Hanner and Jerry Helluin. Saidock played his college ball at Michigan State. He was one of the Eagles' top draft choices in 1957. Meanwhile, Packer Coach Vince Lombardi reported that tackle Fred Thurston, acquired from the Colts last week for linebacker Marv Matuszak, suffered a strained ligament in his leg and will be temporarily sidelines. Lombardi has scheduled a full scale scrimmage for Saturday.
2 PACKERS HOSPITALIZED AFTER DRILL
AUGUST 2 (Green Bay) - Coach-General Manager Vince Lombardi cracked the whip on his 57-man Packer squad Saturday and after a bruising 40-minute scrimmage, two players were hospitalized. None of the injuries were termed "serious by Lombardi. Veteran fullback Jim Taylor needed stitches to close a wound above his eye. Rookie linebacker Dick Teteak was to be an overnight patient pending observation of a slight concussion. Halfback Paul Hornung sustained a leg injury, but was treated in the dressing room. Lombardi was "very pleased" with the roughhouse affair. The offense, working mostly on running plays, scored four times from 50 yards out. However, the new Packer taskmaster called his offense in a huddle when they failed to score from the five. "This is a game of desire and determination," Lombardi told them. "There is no reason to stall here." Lombardi then placed the ball on the five three times - and all three times the offense moved in to score. "This was the most satisfying thing about the scrimmage," Lombardi later said. He praised the work of rookie halfback George Dixon of Bridgeport, and veterans Don McIlhenny and Taylor. After the session was over, Lombardi placed defensive halfback Jim Morse, Notre Dame, on waivers. Morse had been hampered with leg trouble. Jesse Whittenton, veteran defensive halfback who had not come to terms this year, reported in camp. Tackle Tom Saidock, acquired from the Eagles Friday, is expected Sunday. Veteran tackle Dave Hanner was released from the hospital, where he was treated for a stomach disorder. Rookie tackle Gary Raid also was a hospital case, resting after suffering concussion Friday.
FERGUSON RETURNED - KEN RUSSELL QUITS TRAINING CAMP
AUGUST 3 (California, PA) - The Steelers announced Monday that they were returning Howie Ferguson to the Packers. Ferguson was acquired from the Packers two weeks ago on a conditional basis in exchange for a future draft choice. A Steeler spokesman said Ferguson was returned because the club didn't want to take a chance with his chronic shoulder ailment. Ken Russell, the veteran tackle obtained from the Lions in exchange for Ollie Spencer, has left camp. He had been complaining about the work load. Lombardi said "we may get another player for Spencer or a draft choice."
PACKERS LET 2 ROOKIES GO
AUGUST 4 (Green Bay) - The Packers cut two more rookies from their training camp roster Monday, lost another temporarily to the All-Star camp and picked up a draft choice who decided to play. Placed on waivers were Jerry Sprangers, a Green Bay High School tackle, and Mel Schmidt, Idaho fullback. Tackle Gary Raid from Williamette went to the All-Star game. Dick Emmerich, the Bays' 30th draft choice from Westchester State, reported in after deciding not to play in Canada.
PACKERS PICK SQUAD 11S
AUGUST 5 (Green Bay) - Coach Vince Lombardi Wednesday announced lineups for the Packers' intra-squad game Saturday at Green Bay, with the team generally divided between a veteran offense and a rookie defense against a veteran defense and rookie offense. Kickoff is 4 p.m. In the rookie backfield on offense will be second draft choice Alex Hawkins of South Carolina, George Dixon of Bridgeport and Dave Smith of Ripon against the likes of veterans Paul Hornung, Lew Carpenter and Jim Taylor. On defense such veterans as Em Tunnell, Dan Currie and Bill Quinlan will compete in stopping the offense against rookies Dick Teteak of Wisconsin, Bob Laraba of Texas Western and Bill Butler of Chattanooga.
NO PATCH-UP JOB FOR LOMBARDI
AUGUST 9 (Green Bay) - To try and haul the Packers back into contention, Vince Lombardi may keep 17 new men this season. If this is the case, it will clearly show what he thinks of the personnel he inherited. Here's a rebuilding job which will top all rebuilding jobs. The headaches are many but the progress can be rewarding. "I'm not here to patch up a team for one season," Lombardi said Sunday after viewing films of Saturday's scrimmage. "No, sit. I've got to pick the best players available, not for this season, but for the years to come." Looking at a roster, Lombardi checked off several promising rookies: guard Dick Emerich, halfback Jim Brown, tackle Ed Buckingham, defensive halfback Bill Butler, halfback George Dixon, halfback Alex Hawkins, defensive halfback Bob Laraba, end Buddy Mayfield, fullback Dave Smith and end A.D. Williams. That makes 10 rookies and what team ever kept 10 rookies? Lombardi then listed seven new veterans who may make the squad. They include tackle Tom Saidock, linebacker Tom Braatz, defensive back Bob Freeman, quarterback Lamar McHan, defensive end Bill Quinlan, guard Fred Thurston and safetyman Em Tunnell. "One thing for sure," Lombardi emphasized, "everyone has a chance to make this team. And by the desire shown everyone wants to." After two weeks in camp, Lombardi said he has accomplished what he intended to do. "I believe our players now have a knowledge of what we want them to do," he said. "I'm pleased with the way the offensive line gets off on the ball. Our passing game is improved - but I'm worried about the defense." Bart Starr and McHan showed the most promise in the squad test and either may start against the Bears in Milwaukee Saturday night. Starr is a heady play caller and an accurate passer. Lombardi now hopes to restore his confidence. McHan is a proven veteran who throws and runs well. Lombardi said he might work them in combinations if neither is able to move the team consistently. He had hoped to groom a No. 1 passer, but that is beginning to fade. Babe Parill didn't look too sharp in the squad game, although it is not fair to base sole judgment on one appearance. He is the best ball handler but still has a tendency to go for the home runs. "That's what we have preseason game for," Lombardi said. "To judge our personnel and get into shape - and boy, does that defense need to get in shape!" Regarding the Bear game, Lombardi said, "It's not the Bears themselves we