When Vince Lombardi left Green Bay for Washington, one town wept. The other  cheered. - The Washington Post

50 Years ago today- the legendary NFL head coach Vince Lombardi died of colon cancer at the age of 57. Lombardi is generally considered the greatest head coach in NFL history- winning 5 championships in the 1960’s in a seven year period with the Green Bay Packers. Yes he was such a great coach that the Super Bowl winner every year receives The Lombardi Trophy- named after Lombardi. Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers were the winners of Super Bowl’s I and II.

Vince Lombardi | Biography & Facts | Britannica

At the end of the 20th Century ESPN had various awards for the entire century- they had a Top 10 coaches list- in all the sports combined Vince Lombardi was named the greatest coach of all.

After winning Super Bowl II- Lombardi retired but after a year away from coaching was itching to get back in the game. He was hired as GM and Head Coach of the Washington Redskins- one of the worst teams in the league. {The Packers were the worst team in the league when Lombardi became their head coach in 1959.} Lombardi in what would be the last couple of years of his life wasn’t feeling well -digestive problems but he refused to have a colonoscopy. When he finally went to the hospital they found it was too late. He had an aggressive form of colon cancer- spent the summer of 1970 in the hospital and passed away on September 3, 1970.

Vince Lombardi was a tough, demanding coach. Some wonder how his style would work today- that hard nosed style just doesn’t go over in sports today. I think he would do just fine. He was a smart fella, he would have adjusted. Bill Belichick is hardly a warm and cuddly figure- and he has done fine in the modern era. Lombardi’s players feared him but almost universally loved him. Many of the Lombardi Packers would go on to have successful lives post-football and to a man they give the credit to what they learned from Lombardi.

A great book on Vince Lombardi- and one of the best biographies I’ve ever read period- When Pride Still Mattered- A Life of Vince Lombardi by David Maraniss By David Maraniss: When Pride Still Mattered: A Life of Vince  Lombardi Second (9780684844183): Maraniss, David: Books

below is a link to some great Lombardi quotes-


    • that was sad news- although he was 75- in my mind i still picture him young and dominating on the pitchers mound. may be the best pitcher i’ve ever seen.

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