top of page


Green Bay Packers (10-3-1) 23, Cleveland Browns (11-3) 12

Sunday January 2nd 1966 (at Green Bay)


(GREEN BAY) - The Packers are world champions. For the ninth time in their fantastic little-town history. And this one has to be the most satisfying. They were counted out and even jeered during the grueling Western Division race, but today they're at the top of the heap. Looking down on the 13 clubs in the NFL. They proved their right - beyond argument by the way - to wear the ultimate crown by whipping the defending world champion Cleveland Browns in Lambeau Field Sunday. It was a 23 to 12 chapter in the 46-year history of the Sports Wonder of the World. This is the kind of Packer team that does tricks to your heart. The spectacular started a week ago with Green Bay's never-to-be-forgotten 13 to 10 sudden death victory over the Colts in a Division playoff. It continued during a raging first half Sunday when the Packers went ahead 7-0 and 7-6; dropped behind 9-7; and then forged in front 10-9 and finally 13-12 at the intermission. In one last surge of determination, the Packers scored a touchdown in the third quarter and then dominated the champs, 22 plays to 5, in the fourth period to win going away. When the gun barked ending the bruising game and season, the Packers lifted their coach, Vince Lombardi, to their shoulders in the finest way they could show their appreciation to him - for the live audience of 50,582 and millions on television to see. This was an extra personal triumph for Lombardi, who somehow kept his 40 players from cracking under the worst kind of adversity. The Bays finished with a final reading of 16 victories, 4 losses and 1 tie. It was 4-1 in non-league play, 10-3-1 in league action and a glorious 2-0 in championship postseason. This was the Packers' fourth title season in Lombardi's seven-year reign. They won the West in 1960 and captured world title crowns in 1961-62 and '65. The Packers' entire season was reflected in this one big game. The offense scored two touchdowns - one on the ground (a 13-yard run by Paul Hornung) and one in the air (a 47-yard pass from Bart Starr to Carroll Dale) - and three field goals by Don Chandler. This unit rolled up 332 yards and 20 first downs. The defense throttled the league's most terrifying offense, led by the crunching Jim Brown, down to one touchdown (a 17-yarder from Frank Ryan to Gary Collins) and two field goals by Lou Groza. This unit held the Browns to 161 yards and 8 first downs. It was just about 2-1, Green Bay, in everything. Two hours before kickoff you wondered if it was possible to play, what with a four-inch snowfall. But the field was swept off and it was in excellent condition, although intermittent rain and snow softened the turf. Despite the weather danger, the two teams never fumbled all afternoon - a tribute to the intense desire on both sides. The Packer heroes were everybody who played. The big guns were Jim Taylor, Hornung and Bart Starr, who called a sure-winning game and completed 10 passes in 18 attempts for 147 yards and one touchdown. Taylor was named the game's most valuable, winning the Corvette from Sport Magazine, and the big gunner hit 27 times - the most in any one game this year - for 96 years. Hornung was there in the clutch with 105 yards in 18 rushes and ripped off the longest run of the day, a 34-yarder, which set up the Chandler field goal that put Green Bay in front for good, 10-9, in the second quarter. Boyd Dowler was Starr's favorite target and the Long One caught five for 59 yards. The Packers' blocking up front was tremendous and the rushers averaged 4.3 yards per carry. Jerry Kramer put out a tremendous block on Hornung's TD, springing him loose, but Kramer, Fuzzy Thurston, Bob Skoronski, Ken Bowman and Forrest Gregg were opening holes all day - enough to give the Packers a 69 to 39 edge in plays. Chadler tied a championship game record with his three field goals - 15, 23 and 29 yards. The Packer defense limited Brown to 50 yards rushing and Ryan to eight completions in 18 attempts. Ray Nitschke dogged Brown unmercifully and many times Ryan was rushed into throwing under pressure from Willie Davis, Lionel Aldridge, Ron Kostelnik and Henry Jordan. Ryan tried to isolate his receivers (Brown and Collins each caught three) with Packer outside linebackers Lee Roy Caffey and Dave Robinson, but they were equal to the task. Willie Wood and Herb Adderley each grabbed interceptions, Wood to set up a field goal and a 13-9 lead in the second quarter and Adderley to cut off a Ryan bomb aimed at Collins with one minute left in the game. Backing up Wood and Adderley were Tom Bown and a combination of Doug Hart, who went out with a foot injury in the second quarter, and his replacement, Bob Jeter, who kept the speedy Paul Warfield down to no catches. The game had an electrifying start. The Packers took the opening kickoff and moved 77 yards in 7 plays for a 7-0 lead at 3:52. Starr pitched first down passes to Hornung and Taylor and Taylor and Hornung rushed 19 yards to the Brown 47. With second and four, Starr hurled a long pass down the east sidelines toward Dale but it started to fall short. Dale cut back sharply to make the catch on the 23, while defender Walter Beach fell down. Dale whirled westward and then cut sharply south into the end zone. The Browns got the TD back in three plays - but they couldn't match Chandler's extra point. Ryan first hit Brown to the right for 30 to the Packer 36. Then he caught Warfield for 19 on the left and finally pitched a perfect strike to Collins who got away from Adderley in the end zone. It was a 66-yard strike but the pass back from Art Morrow on the extra point was low and, finally, Groza picked up the loose ball and threw to Bob Franklin, who was tackled on the 5 by Wood. A 31-yard punt by Chandler put Brown in a position for a field goal, a 24-yard shot by Groza, and a 9-7 lead later in the first quarter. The Packers slammed back, chiefly on Hornung's 34-yard run and Starr's 11-yard pass to Dowler, and Chandler booted a 15-yarder on the fourth play of the second quarter. After an exchange of Chandler and Collins punts, there was an exchange of interceptions, each of which set up field goals. Wood made a great leaping grab of Ryan's thrown on the Brown 25 and returned to the 10 to set up Chandler's 23-yard field goal. Just before the half, Beach intercepted Starr's throw aimed at Hornung and on the

Packer 30 and Groza kicked from 28 yards out to make it 13-12. The Packer domination started after the Browns were forced to punt in the third period. Starr moved the Bays 90 yards in 11 plays for a victory-sealing 20-12 lead. Hornung and Taylor did the bull work, getting 68 yards in 9 carries. Starr passed twice - to Dowler for 12 and Taylor for 10. The Browns then made their last serious bid. A 15-yard penalty for face masking gave the Browns position on the Packer 46 and Brown moved 11 yards in two trips. The Bays tightened after giving up five yards and Jordan broke through to deflect Groza's field goal from the 37.


The Packers started another move - from their own 20, and Taylor and Hornung again did the big crashing while Starr passed to Dale for 13 and Dowler for 18. The Brown stiffened and Chandler made it 23-12 from the 29. That was about it. As the crowd sensed the victory and really let loose - especially as Taylor, Hornung and Starr were removed on separate plays near the end. Zeke Bratkowski, who worked the sudden death win for the injured Starr, handled the last play.

CLEVELAND -  9  3  0  0 - 12

GREEN BAY -  7  6  7  3 - 23

                       CLEVELAND      GREEN BAY

First downs                    8             21

Rush-yards-TDs           18-64-0       47-204-1

Comp-Att-Yd-TD-INT  8-18-115-1-2  10-19-147-1-1

Sacked-yards                2-18           2-19

Net pass yards                97            128

Total yards                  161            332

Fumbles-lost                 0-0            0-0

Turnovers                      2              1

Penalties-yards             3-35           2-20


1st - GB - Carroll Dale, 47-yard pass from Bart Starr (Don Chandler kick) GREEN BAY 7-0

1st - CLE - Gary Collins, 17-yard pass from Frank Ryan (Kick failed) GREEN BAY 7-6

1st - CLE - Lou Groza, 24-yard field goal CLEVELAND 9-7

2nd - GB - Chandler, 15-yard field goal GREEN BAY 10-9

2nd - GB - Chandler, 23-yard field goal GREEN BAY 13-9

2nd - CLE - Groza, 28-yard field goal GREEN BAY 13-12

3rd - GB - Paul Hornung, 13-yard run (Chandler kick) GREEN BAY 20-12

4th - GB - Chandler, 29-yard field goal GREEN BAY 23-12


GREEN BAY - Paul Hornung 18-105 1 TD, Jim Taylor 27-96, Tom Moore 2-3

CLEVELAND - Jim Brown 12-50, Frank Ryan 3-9, Ernie Green 3-5


GREEN BAY - Bart Starr 18-10-147 1 TD 1 INT, Paul Hornung 1-0-0

CLEVELAND - Frank Ryan 18-8-115 1 TD 2 INT


GREEN BAY - Boyd Dowler 5-59, Carroll Dale 2-60 1 TD, Jim Taylor 2-20, Paul Hornung 1-8

CLEVELAND - Jim Brown 3-44, Gary Collins 3-41 1 TD, Paul Warfield 2-30


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - As Green Bay's soggy, begrimed world champions clumped through the long gray tunnel to their Lambeau Field dressing room Sunday afternoon, an exuberant Elijah Pitts whooped, "We is the greatest!" Ex-pedagogue Vince Lombardi, who didn't hear the ebullient declaration, might have taken issue with Elijah's grammar, but he heartily endorsed the sentiment minutes later. Encircled by a crush of newsmen in his functional first floor "office," where he presented a picture of restrained jubilation, the Packers' square cut headmaster asserted with evident pride, "This team has more character than any other team I've had. And I think that is a great compliment to them." A torrent of questions, and not a few congratulatory handshakes, intervened by the one-time Block of Granite subsequently returned to this theme. "I think I marked this team pretty well (during the training season). I said this may not be the best team I've had, but it has the most character." "I think it's got a mark to it," Lombardi continued. "It's got a great deal of perseverance - it never seemed to count itself out." Elaborating upon this point, he said, "A lot of things happened to us this season, but the players closed their mouths and never said a word to the press or anyone. They kept their mouths shut. Everything that was said was said here (in the dressing room). I'm talking about injuries and a number of things." This prompted an allusion to the Pack's mid-season recession, which Lombardi acknowledged with, "Thats' what I said. A lot of teams would have folded, but we stayed right in there." Ever forthright, he hastily appended, "We had a break, however. Let's not say we won it all by ourselves. We had a break from the Bears (the Bruins' 13-0 victory over the Colts in Baltimore Dec. 5)." Some wag interjected, "That's what Halas said the day the Packers beat 'em here in October, that he was going to give you some help along the way." "I'm glad," Lombardi rejoined with a smile, "he said that." The Pack's guiding genius earlier had indicated the manner in which the victory had been accomplished, noting with a twinkle. "Maybe some of the people who say we don't have any offense will change their minds now." This caused one eager scribe to observe, "You predicted this (the title) last summer." "I don't think I did that," Lombardi chuckled, "but it sounds good." Had he decided to play fundamental football because of the field conditions" "Yes, we did," Vince replied, "but we're a basic football team anyway." The Browns' attack also had dictated this approach, he pointed out. "I think you have to control the ball to beat the Browns because they have a great offense." He hadn't made any changes in pregame planning? "No, I didn't. That's what you get out of," he grinned, "when you are a basic football team." Lombardi added puckishly, "I am glad people believe that, anyway." In this connection, he revealed that the Pack's game plan had been developed "by Wednesday. We knew by Wendesday what we were going to try to do." Did he think Jim Taylor, voted the game's most valuable player, had been inspired by the presence of all-league fullback Jim Brown in enemy silks? "I think it's an ordinary reaction with all fine athletes," Lombardi responded, "if he has enough pride." The Packers' major-domo also was asked why he had replaced Doug Hart with Bob Jeter at right cornerback in the first quarter. "We thought Jeter could do a better job of covering Warfield (Cleveland split end Paul)," he said. Agreeing that Bob had sparkled in his unexpected assignment, Lombardi pointed out, "Jeter's probably the fastest man we have on the squad - Jeter and Long." Quizzed about the Browns' early success with the pass, Vince observed, "We didn't react as well as we might have. But let's not take anything away from them - they were beautiful passes. That one to Collins in the corner of the end zone was a beautifully thrown ball." Commenting on the Packers' quarterbacking, Lombardi declared, "I think Starr was real sharp. I think he called a great game, by the way. It was not the best day for passing, of course. The receivers couldn't make their cuts well and the ball was slick. I think you could see that with Ryan (Cleveland quarterback Frank) a couple of times." Taylor and Hornung, somebody suggested, hadn't looked too bad, considering they were supposed to be in the twilight of their careers. Appreciating the understatement, Lombardi responded with one of his own. "I think," he chuckled, "there's a little spark left in them." In the dressing room proper, a few feet away, all was confusion. Television cameras and wires, plus news photographers and swarms of reporters from throughout the nation, crammed every cubic inch of the Packers' plush green and gold quarters, clambering over each other in an attempt to pry comments from the heroes of Green Bay's ninth world title. Before greeting the press, Lombardi had taken note of the invasion, particularly the electronic aspect. Still wearing bespattered rain gear, he took time out for his preparations for the TV "eye" to admonish his athletes. "Watch your language now." Elsewhere, rookie Junior Coffey was shouting, to no one in particular, "How sweet it is!" and, in another corner of the bedlam, Defense Coach Phil; Bengtson was embracing one of his proteges, Willie Wood. At the other end of the Pack's palatial quarters, prime hero Jim Taylor was almost inaccessible. His rugged features still caked with mud, the Bayou Bronco patiently held forth for wave after wave of newsmen, who delayed his departure for the shower room for more than an hour. Weeding his way through the mass of humanity, Lombardi finally managed to reach his multi-muscled fullback. "Let me shake your hand again, Jimmy," he told him, with obvious fervor. "You did a great job, a great job. And I know you were hurt, too." Taylor smiled his thanks, and, as the Packer coach departed, returned to the questions at hand. He had been troubled by injuries throughout the season, it was noted. "That's true," Taylor nodded. "The Achilles tendon stayed with me for six or eight ball games - it was almost severed in our last exhibition game against St. Louis." The majestically hewn LSU alumnus was whisked away for yet another picture with Lombardi, and his longtime "companion," Paul Hornung, but shortly returned to accommodate the fourth estate. Taking up where he had left off, he volunteered, "I played very little in our opener at Pittsburgh and not at all in our next game against Baltimore. I was running at about 60 percent, if you can set a percentage. I couldn't cut and drive on it. It was just like running on one leg. I couldn't depend on it - I didn't have any confidence in it. I couldn't play the position the way you're supposed to play it. The only thing I could do for it was rest it. I worked very little this week - you can't run on it and strain it." What had caused him to limp off the field in the fourth quarter Gingerly tearing a huge piece of tape (protection for a pulled muscle) off his left thigh, Taylor explained. "I got a knee." He tapped his right leg and added for emphasis, "I got a pretty good pop in the knee." Had Brown's presence affected his performance? The crew cut blaster paused for a moment, then replied, "I'm conscious I'm playing against him," he admitted. "But I don't have any individual honors in mind. I just want to play the best game I can play, every game I play." Diagonally across the room, Taylor's running mate, the irrepressible Hornung, labeled this latest title more of a satisfaction than the two he previously had helped acquire in '61 and '62. "This one's better than those two," he declared. Why? "Because if's '66, that's why," the Golden Boy good-naturedly shot back. Discoursing upon his highly opportune 13-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, Hornung explained, "It was just a perfect play. Jerry (Kramer) had a great block on the linebacker and Skoronski (Bob) and Anderson (Bill) both got good blocks. It was just a well-executed play." The effectiveness of the now famous Lombardi sweep on this critical occasion was mentioned and Paul pointed out, "It's always been our bread-and-butter play. The older I get," he added dryly, "the worst it hurts. Those linebackers really hit." Hadn't he, too, been troubled by injuries? "Yeh, which ones do you want to talk about?" Hornung quipped. "Knee, groin or my shoulder." This reminded him of a happy prospect and he added, "Now I'll be able to relax and play a little golf. I'm leaving for Los Angeles tonight. In fact, I'll be on the first tee at Bel Air Wednesday morning. I'm going to get me some sunshine." In reply to another question, he conceded that his title performance had been embellished by "my best blocking day. He (Browns linebacker Jim Houston) didn't jam me too much. He wasn't playing me tight, so all I had to do was tie him up so Jimmy could slide inside or outside. They weren't blitzing too much - in fact, they had one weak side blitz all day long." Defensive hero Bob Jeter, who shut out Paul Warfield after replacing the injured Doug Hart in the second quarter, explained, "Doug had trouble with his foot before the game. He couldn't put full speed on it, but he had a couple of shots of novocaine and they (the coaching staff) thought it would be all right. About the middle of the first quarter, he came over to the sidelines and said he couldn't go on it, so they sent me in." Although he was aware of the magnitude of his assignment, Jeter pointed out, "I've been practicing at the position quite a bit. But," he admitted with a smile, "I was nervous. I'm thankful I was able to go in there and do a good job." The former Iowa star also was happy to append, "No, he didn't catch any on me." Explaining how he had foiled the Browns' gifted flanker, Bob reported, "I just laid back and did the best I could, plus the line was putting a pretty good rush on Ryan, which made it easier." Hart, who applauded Jeter's performance, revealed, "I don't know what it was. I woke up Saturday morning with this pain in my left foot. I had two novocaine shots this morning, but they didn't seem to help." "Bobby," he added, "did a great job out there." Bart Starr, who had just presided at his third championship in as many attempts, was describing the Pack's first touchdown across the way. "Dale (Carroll) made a great effort on that one," he revealed. "I rared back and let the ball go, but it just squirted out like somebody had hit it with both hands. He had to come back to get it - he made a great play on it." Why had Boyd Dowler been a particular target? "We were keying certain people," Starr explained, "and when they weren't open we went to somebody else. We felt from their pass coverage, we felt we'd have to throw to Boyd. They do a great job on covering the tight end. Anderson (Bill) almost never got open. Early in the game, we decided we'd have to throw to somebody else." And what about his arm (Starr had been troubled by bruised ribs on the right side, acquired in the Western Conference playoff

against the Colts)? "The arm felt great," Bart replied, "just great." When had he known he would be able to play? "I felt Thursday like I would be able to, but I couldn't throw too well until Friday. And I didn't feel good until Saturday." With that, Starr grinned and advised the newsmen, "You guys talk to those linemen - they're the ones who deserve the credit." Chronicling the big play from his end, Dale informed, "I had the defender (Walter Beach) beat, I saw the ball was short - the wind caught it - and I came back and got it. I don't know whether Beach slipped or not, but one guy cut back and a couple of guys grabbed my feet down near the goal line." "It wasn't like on a drawing board," Carroll dryly conceded, "but it worked out all right." Quizzed about the third quarter pass he deflected from Jim Brown's straining hands in the Green Bay end zone, obviously a key maneuver, balding Ray Nitschke smiled and replied, "I don't know. I just ran, I just ran." How had he been able to stay with the Browns' nonpareil? "When he's your man," Nitschke said simply, "you've got to go every place he goes." He was not entirely satisfied with his performance, he added. "I could have had a better day. I just didn't move as quickly as I wanted to. I don't know if it was the footing or what it was. But Brown is a great ball carrier and it's a challenge playing against him." Analyzing the situation from the defensive standpoint, Alternate Captain Willie Davis explained, "It's a matter of taking away the things they can do best. To do that, you have to have one guy to disrupt the pattern and another guy to make the tackle," How is it done? "We'll make the guy run the play deeper, or make him cut it back," Davis replied. "If there's any success to our defense, it's made up of that - disorganizing a pattern of play." Fellow defender Henry Jordan capped a delightful afternoon with a droll description of his major contribution, the sabotage of a third quarter field goal attempt by legendary Lou Groza. "When we were coming out of the huddle, Ray (Nitschke) said he wanted to get on the guard. I said, 'Okay, you pull him in' and I said to Lionel (Aldridge), 'Why don't you pull the tackle outside?' And I sneaked in between them," Henry informed, adding with a grin, "I sneak, I don't bull my way. Luckily, I got my hand on it."


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - The 1965 world championship game, played Jan. 2, 1966, was the second largest bonanza in the history of the NFL. The exact amount of the players' shares of the game and television receipts won't be known for about two weeks, but Jim Kensil, NFL publicity director, estimated Sunday that the Packers will receive approximately $7,000 per man and the Browns will collect a loser's share of about $4,400. The Packers could realize close to $10,000 per, due to the extra pay for the College All-Star game next August and other fringe benefits. The richest title game was played last year in Cleveland. Each winning Brownie received $8,052, and each losing Colt was consoled with $5,571.


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - The Packers have a clubhouse cheerleader who uses his own pep pills. Dad Braisher, head of the Packers' equipment room, has a number of printed slogans posted at each locker. They read: "Anything is ours - provided we are willing to pay the price." After the Packers' victory in Baltimore last month, Dad had a number of books of matches printed. On the cover of each, there was this message: "Anything equals $10,000." During the past week, each Packer received an envelope from Dad. Each had a check made out for $10,000 to F.U. Win and signed Nathan L. Leg. "I lisp," said Dad. "Nathan L. Leg is supposed to sound like me saying National League."


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - Blanton Collier hinted at it. Frank Ryan said it. And Jimmy Brown detailed it. The Packer defense, a unit which all season made Jack Benny look like the last of the big spenders, was one of the major factors, if not the key to Green Bay preserving the Title in Titletown with a 23-12 NFL championship conquest of Cleveland in soggy Lambeau Field Sunday afternoon. "You can't make the mistakes we did against a great team like Green Bay," Collier said in the gloom of the erstwhile champions' dressing room minutes after the final gun had sealed their doom. "That's the best defensive club we've faced in the last couple years," Ryan, accepting the martyr's role thrown at him, added. "Defense is their strong point. Their linebackers are big and fast, their defensive backs are very good and that Davis (Willie, the Packers' All-Pro defensive end) is all over the field besides being a great leader," Brown, surprisingly accommodating considering his general misfortune (50 yards in 12 attempts) declared. The NFL's all-time rushing champion smiled for the benefit of the cameras when he appended, "I noticed that Nitschke (Packer middle linebacker Ray) was keying on me. He's as tough as anybody is." Brown didn't mention the Pack's front four, outside of Davis, but he could have. This quartet combined with the Brown-named talents to stop Cleveland with just 161 yards, including 64 yards on the ground and 97 passing. This compares with the Browns' season long average of 314 net yards per game. In addition, Cleveland managed just eight first downs compared to its average of 18. Ryan, the mathematics Ph.D. who completed 11 of 18 passes when the Browns whitewashed Baltimore, 27-0, to earn the NFL crown a year ago but hit just 8 of 18 Sunday, hastened to point out, however, "But there's no club that can cover Warfield (Paul) and Collins (Gary). It was just me not getting the ball to them that stopped them. If I had done my job a little better. But that's the game of football." While Ryan, Brown and most of the Cleveland players recovered from their original disappointment enough to find a few smiles, Collier's face remained grim beneath his rain-soaked baseball cap as he addressed 

the gathering of newsmen. His voice was genial, though, considering the circumstances, and his words laudatory for both the Packers and his own vanquished warriors. "We got beat by a great football team," he opened, then explained: "They made the big play and we couldn't make it. By the big play I mean the third down play. I don't construe the big play to be a touchdown. I mean the play you have to make to maintain possession. They made it. They didn't make many mistakes. We didn't make the big play and we made too many mistakes." Continuing in this vein, the onetime University of Kentucky strategist said, "We couldn't contain them. Taylor (Jm) and Hornung (Paul) were excellent. Starr (Bart) was wonderful. He hit his pass when he had to and he ran his team in a very intelligent manner." Returning to his own team, Collier went on, "We had people open on the key plays, but we couldn't execute at that particular time. I'm real proud of our boys, though. They had it in their hearts to win. We're a better team than we showed. I don't want to take anything away from our boys, but I'm not taking anything away from Green Bay either." Of specific plays, the 59-year-old soft-spoken Collier, who is winding up his 37th year of coaching, called the roughing the kicker penalty on Ralph Smith late in the fourth quarter "vital. We were still in the ball game then." The Packers took quick advantage of that piece of overexuberance on the part of Smith, a four year veteran end, to retain ownership of the ball for three more minutes and all but wipe out any lingering Browns' hopes. Questioned about the "missed" extra point which left Cleveland temporarily in arrears 7-6 early in the game, Collier noted that the one point difference seemed to keep the Browns in a "catchup" position for much of the game even though they did take a short-lived 9-7 advantage. The missed conversion occurred when center John Morrow's snap from center was wide and forced holder Bobby Franklin to lunge for it. "I got a hand on it, but couldn't hold it without falling on my face," Franklin explained. It was the first Browns' PAT miss after 96 successful tries. But the incident naturally brought up the condition of the playing field. Collier felt, "It hurt our passing game but then we have great pride in our running game. But when you get behind you have to play different. This is in no way an excuse or alibi. We played on the same field they did. But it is a shame that two teams like this couldn't have played on the good field, and given the fans a better show." Green Bay fans undoubtedly are very satisfied with the show despite the conditions. Collier did admit, though, that it was a "remarkable fumbles." And neither he nor Ryan felt that the Packers required switch of Bob Jeter for Doug Hart had any bearing on the game one way or another, despite the Browns' lack of aerial success after a brilliant start. Warfield, who was the primary worry of both Hart and Jeter, concurred with their coach and quarterback. "They used a lot of combinations," explained the almost scrawny ex-Ohio State star who made his first start of the season after suffering an injury in the College All-Star game. "They double teamed me a lot with Willie Wood. Both Hart and Jeter are good." Brown, fastening a cuff link to a monogrammed white shirt that pinpointed with blood spots from a couple tell-tale cuts and his chin and arms, opined. "It was not a running day but they moved the ball better and controlled it better than we did. They kept the pressure on us." Lou Groza, the 19-year veteran placekicker who now looks like he swallowed a basketball somewhere along the line, was the victim of the game's only fumble, the bad snap on his attempted first extra point. But Groza grabbed the ball and passed to Franklin, who was stopped short. Unable to contain a broad grin, the -feet-3, 250-pounder reported, "My first thought was to run, but then I spotted someone in the corner of my eye and decided to pass." On another kick, Don Chandler's final field goal, a game clincher from 29 yards out, Brown tackle Dick Modzelewski, who was playing in his fifth consecutive championship game (three with the Giants and two with Cleveland), erupted in protest when the officials signaled it good. But he quietly confided later, "I thought it was wide, but it might have been wrong," Thus averting another Lou Michaels' episode. Ross Fichtner, the victim of Bart Starr's 47-yard collaboration with Carroll Dale for the Packers' first, startling touchdown, put most of the blame (his point of view) on some attempted deception. "It was the first time we went into a zone, and I tried to camouflage it a bit and got behind Dale," he said. "Then I had to take my eyes away from the ball to catch up and it was thrown show. I saw it at the last moment and couldn't recover and slipped and fell backward. Dale was watching it all the way and made the recovery. If it had been a good pass, I think I would have at least broken it up."


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - "Green Bay deserved to win the championship," NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle said after the Packers' convincing 23-12 defeat of Cleveland's Browns. "It was a typical Packer victory - an efficient offense and an efficient defense," he explained. The commissioner, who spent an anxious morning keeping an eye on Green Bay's first heavy snow of the season, watch the contest from the press box. He shared a box with Cleveland owner Art Modell, Ohio Gov. James Rhodes, and other NFL and Cleveland officials. Modell made no comments immediately after the game, but his red-rimmed eyes and a catch in his voice paid mute testimony to his feelings. "The field conditions hurt us more than them (the Packers)," he had said at halftime. Green Bay's own version of the Arctic Circle had taken away much of the Browns' ability to maneuver to the outside "and this caused us to make some adjustments," he explained. Rozelle said he had never considered postponing Sunday's game, despite the storm which deposited nearly five inches of wet, heavy, traffic-snarling snow. He praised the efforts of the stadium crew in removing the 40 tons of marsh hay which had kept the playing surface unfrozen. "I think you may be better equipped to handle this sort of thing here than any other place in the league," the commissioner said. As he spoke, a group of 60 stadium workers and about 25 young volunteers shoveled, hauled, pushed and shook the sticky snow off the giant tarpaulins covering the field. Two jeeps, equipped with brushes, spun the rest of the snow to the sidelines and the shovel-equipped hordes then moved it past the sideline markers. The snow had obliterated most of the yard markings, and players' cleats soon tore up what was left of the middle-of-the-field turf making it difficult to follow the downs. Even a helicopter had been called in to dry out the field and to blow snow off of some of the stadium seats. But the copter idea did not work out and men with shovels cleared most of the seating areas. But the copter idea did not work out and men with shovels cleared most of the seating areas. Rozelle admitted that postponement of the game is a possibility in bad weather - "but it would have taken a lot worse than this," he said. Gov. Rhodes said at halftime that "things look pretty good for the case of tomato juice." Rhodes had made a bet with Wisconsin Gov. Warren Knowles on the outcome of the game. He showed his faith in the Browns by offering a case of tomato juice - a prize Ohio product, against the wedge of Wisconsin cheese put up by Gov. Knowles. The bad weather kept Knowles from attending the game. His plane circled Austin Straubel airport for about half an hour, but heavy snow and low visibility kept it from landing. Rhodes also used the game to do some quiet politicking for Ohio's hoped-for Cincinnati franchise in the NFL. He said he and Rozelle had discussed 'some generalities about the franchise" but that details of the Cincinnati operation would be presented at the league meeting in Palm Beach, Fla., in February. Modell, who attended the game along with Ben Flieger and Harold Sauerbrei of the Cleveland staff, said he was a bit nervous during the game. "I always am during a pressure game. I'm still a little new at this business of championship games," he said. Modell took over the Brown franchise four years ago and saw his team win Cleveland's first world title in 1964 when it outclassed Baltimore for the crown. Modell visited the Packer dressing room after the game to offer congratulations to Lombardi and his players. He singled out Willie Davis for special praise. "You played a fine game. You're a great football player," Modell told Davis, who formerly played for the Browns. Did the game indicate a superiority for the tough Western Division of the league? "It was a competitive ball game. And I think that the 13-1 statistic (Western Division teams have won 13 of 14 league contests with Eastern Division teams this year) is a little misleading, Rozelle said. "I don't think that you will see the imbalance that many people thought there was this year in the league play next year," the commissioner said. The Commissioner's party watched the game from its box at the north end of the press box. They gathered early to watch the pregame television shows on a monitor and see Cleveland's Jim Brown presented with the Jim Thorpe trophy. Brown also told of his plans for playing one more season, then retiring. On the trip back to his headquarters at the Northland Hotel, Rozelle also commented on the "attractive and functional" Packer facilities. "I wish we had something similar in every league city," he said. The commissioner also reported that he was cheered by the NFL signing record which saw 38 of the league's top 43 draft choices inked. The Packers' added another 1966 rookie, the league had announced early in the day, with the signing of Nebraska's Tony Jeter, brother of defensive specialist Bob Jeter. "We like to come out here," Rozelle said after the game. "The cooperation from the Packers and from the city makes our job easier."


JAN 3 (Green Bay Press-Gazette) - Shiny new world champions, the Packers are making sure they get future cracks at the title. With the acquisition of Tony Jeter's signature late New Year's Day, the Packers now have signed their first five choices, including their No. 1 pick a year ago, All-America halfback Donny Anderson of Texas Tech and this year's top selection, All-America fullback Jim Grabowski of Illinois. Jeter, a third round choice and brother of Packer defensive halfback Bob Jeter, signed shortly after he and his Nebraska Cornhuskers bowed to Alabama in the Orange Bowl Saturday night, 39-28. Bob pronounced himself as "real glad" brother Tony had entered the Packer fold, adding: "I told him about the advantages of playing here." The Packers haven't lost a man above the fourth round to the rival AFL this year. In addition to Anderson, Grabowski and Jeter, they have signed tackle Gale Gillingham of Minnesota, a first round pick, a second third round choice, tackle Fred Heron of San Jose State. This year's second round choice is another junior eligible, Maryland tackle Tom Chichowski...Packer all-pro cornerback Herb Adderley, who surrendered his first touchdown pass in 16 NFL games when Gary Collins made his scoring catch in the first quarter, explained, "Collins ran a zig-out pattern, I had to commit myself. I was shading to Collins' inside shoulder and looking for the post pattern."...Adderley's fellow all-pro, Willie Wood, who set up the field goal that gave the Packers a 13-12 halftime lead by picking off a Frank Ryan pass and returning it to the Cleveland 10, reported, "We had called the right defense for this play. We shifted our defense to the right. The pass was kind of wobbly. It floated in there. At the last minutes, I jumped up and tapped it and then got it on the rebound."...Paul Hornung paid tribute to the men up front, declaring, "Our offensive line had a helluva day blocking."...Commenting from his standpoint, offensive guard Fuzzy Thurston explained, "We were blocking man for man and letting Paul and Jim (Taylor) find the holes." It was the fourth world crown for Thurston (he was a member of the champion Baltimore Colts in 1958 and the Pack's 1961 and '62 titlists), which prompted him to observe. "I think that's more than anybody playing, except maybe Groza (Lou)." Although it appeared somewhat treacherous, the footing didn't bother me at all," Fuzzy also confided. "I don't think it hurt the straight ahead running. I think it hurt the defense more than it did the offense. I think they found it a little tough making that second move."...Although he had been in title games before, Don Chandler termed Sunday's triumph the most gratifying. Chandler, who kicked three field goals to equal a playoff record, pointed out, "All of those when I was with the Giants we never won the championship, except in 1956, and I was only a rookie then."...Second year man Bob Long, the former basketball player from Wichita, agreed that this winning the title was his biggest sport's thrill. "It sure beats playing basketball," the lanky receiver said as he downed a bottle of soda pop...Veteran Max McGee, who helped the Packers into this championship, particularly with a clutch catch in the first of three Packer wins over the Colts, admitted that he "had been a little worried" about halfway through the season. "But I figured the Colts would have to lose one somewhere along the line," he said. Was this one of the best Packer championship teams he had played on? "We might have been a little better in 1961 and 1962, but this is a tougher league now. There are no breathers in the Western Division," he said, referring specifically to the Packers' loss to the last-place Rams...The National Professional Football Hall of Fame held its annual selection meeting here over the weekend with Dick McCann, director of the Hall's shrine at Canton, Ohio, presiding, Only selector missing was Jimmy Conzelman, confined to his St. Louis home where he is recuperating from double pneumonia. Results from the committee's deliberations will be announced shortly...Dick Schafrath, Cleveland's All-Pro offensive tackle, was introduced with the starting lineup, but never got in the game. The seven-year veteran had pulled a muscle in practice during the week and did not even warmup before the game for fear of aggravating it. Coach Blanton Collier still hoped to start him, though, but explained he changed his mind when he saw how he limped toward the TV camera during the introductions...The Browns didn't arrive at Lambeau Field until 11:50. It took their charter buses an hour and 20 minutes to make the 38-mile trip from the Holiday Inn just south of Appleton...Brown quarterback Frank Ryan visited the Packer dressing room after the game and renewed old acquaintances with Bay quarterback Zeke Bratkowski. The two shared QB duties with the Rams in 1961...Vince Lombardi and his coaching aides toasted their latest world title with champagne, courtesy of Equipment Manager Dad Braisher. "I got it a couple of days ago and I saved it," Dad said, adding with a grin. "I just had a hunch we were going to win."...Among the visitors to the Packers' dressing room was Jess Whittenton, a member of the Pack's 1961 and 1962 world champions, who now is an El Paso, Tex., golf pro. Did this remind of anything? "Yeah," Jess ruefully replied, "it reminds me I'm not here."...Asked if he had helped influence Donny Anderson's signing with the Packers, Paul Hornung replied, "I don't know how much I influenced him, but I took him to dinner when he was a guest of the Packers in Baltimore in December." His opinion of the Texas Tech All-America? "He's a mature kid. He's going to be a great back," Hornung said. "He's got all the tools." A writer suggested that Anderson might supplant the Golden Boy at left halfback in '66. "We'll have to wait and see," Hornung rejoined with a lift of the Roman jaw, "next year."...Hugh Brown, sportswriter from the Philadelphia Bulletin, witnesses the famed snow bowl championship game in Philly in 1948 and said, "This is summer and sunshine compared to that one. We didn't have these kind of facilities to handle the snow then. Whoever did the job on this field ought to be complimented." That game, won by the Eagles 7-0, was played on a field covered with about four inches of snow. "That was the only show we had all year," Brown recalled...Asked if there was any chance the title game might be postponed, as snowflakes swirling about the Hotel Northland late Sunday morning, Pete Rozelle shuddered and replied, "Don't say that."...Slick and congested highways delayed the arrival of several Milwaukee press and radio reporters. The Milwaukee Journal's Chuck Johnson and Terry Bledsoe didn't check in the press box until early in the second quarter, and broadcasters Ted Moore

and Blaine Walsh still were en route to their radio booth at the kickoff. WBAY's Les Sturmer, pressed into service until they arrived, described the kickoff and the Packers' first three plays...Late in the first half, one visiting scribe asserted, "This is the kind of game it's going to be hard to decide who's the most valuable player." Another rejoined, with at least of modicum of sincerity, "John Proski, the groundskeeper."...Two extra rows of chairs and school desks were installed in the press box and temporary facilities constructed atop the three-tier structure for television and news cameramen to accommodate the record corps of 360 reporters, photographers and officials who bulged the walls...It may or may not have been tongue-in-cheek, but the weather report on the bulletin board in the NFL's press headquarters at Hotel Northland last Sunday morning elicited a chuckle or two. It read: "Precipitation: Weather bureau very optimistic about accumulation of snow - very light - no more than total accumulation of 2 inches...Light winds."

bottom of page