Green Bay Packers
1968 Dave Robinson
you put a seashell up to your ear you are supposed to forever hear the roar of
the ocean. If a football helmet shell had the same capability can you imagine
the sounds that have echoed though Dave Robinson's Packer helmet over the years?
The ocean's roar would have nothing over Mr. Lombardi's explicit requests: "We
will run this play over and over until we do it right -- Taylor get to the alley
-- run every play in practice all the way to the goal line -- hit the
sled harder, look up at me, harder, harder -- grab grab grab, can't anyone
tackle on this team -- last night will cost you $100 Hornung and if you do it
again take me with you so I can see the woman that is worth being fined $500
over -- hit the dirt, up, down, up, down, up down -- Men I have never been more
proud of a group of guys as I am with you today."
Dave Robinson was a great player for the Packers and if Mr. Lombardi were alive today he would lead the campaign for Dave to be included into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In addition to being a great athlete Dave was also intellectually gifted. He graduated with a degree in civil engineering from Penn State during an era where athletes were usually relegated to "softer" curriculums. Today he is a highly ranked player in both chess and bridge and has won numerous tournaments in each endeavor.
Perhaps he needed that slightly larger Riddell "RK" (husky) helmet to accommodate that extra brain power. His helmet also included the optional concussion padding. Only Dave knows if he used this padding more to prevent head injuries or more to help drown out the Marine Sergeant comportment of Mr. Lombardi during practice and games. It is interesting to note that Packer helmet logos were still two part material (white vinyl "g" mounted on a green vinyl oval) as late as the late 1960s as evidenced by the partial deterioration of the "g" on the right side of Dave's helmet. Also his helmet had vinyl Riddell factory striping (underneath the rivets) as compared to painted on striping as seen in Packer helmets from the late 1950s and early 1960s. No vintage 1960s Packer helmet would be complete without those black military stencil style numerals that were proudly painted on by Packers equipment manager George "Dad" Braisher. When Dave Robinson grabbed both helmet ear holes to stretch his helmet on each day the first thing he saw was that military stencil style "89". Was this another subtle but intentional message from Mr. Lombardi suggesting that only preparation commiserate with the seriousness of military style training would insure a Packer victory for the battle that was to take place each Sunday?