No longer a child, not yet middle-aged, and still finding their place in the NFL world.

...the 30-year wall of silence is an impressive achievement for a League that leaks as a lifestyle.

He recommended Jack Patera enthusiastically for the Seahawks...

The letter C is coming soon!

The Seahawks used Williams’ local reputation as a promotional tool, as they would do (very briefly) with Ahmad Rashad.

The average Seahawk selected in the veteran allocation is 6-2, 222 pounds, just under 26 years old and is entering his fourth NFL season.

The Seahawks played the Rams...facing off against future Seahawk coaches Chuck Knox, Tom Catlin and Ken Meyer. decided early to pursue coaches with no NFL head coaching experience.

Patera had the boldness to recruit 3 coaches with no NFL service...

...why was there no place for one of the ultimate local heroes of the early 1970s – Sonny Sixkiller?

Thompson may have looked on paper like a conservative and safe manager for a new team with first-time owners, but...

...reports from the camp are unclear as to who did the special team evaluations.

As a defensive coach, Jack Patera valued his linebackers.

Maybe we'll come up with something soon!

...nobody else on the Seahawks squad took their dislike quite to the extent of Ahmad Rashad.

The Nordstroms were an obvious possibility because of their wealth and local presence.

Approximately 14 members of that squad would never play for the Seahawks again.

A simple lesson in draft history is to list the fate of quarterbacks for several years before 1976.

Jack Patera was unable to take a single Redskin veteran from the allocation list.

...the Seahawks’ offense would be directed by 3 men who had 2 years of NFL experience between them

Terry Brown’s Seahawk career lasted less than 24 hours.

...we think this story might just have been a good Patera Prank!

While Patera had an inside edge on stocking his team with Vikings, he only chose one Viking from the allocation...

Character would clearly play a part...

Patera lived up to his code of we will tolerate you until we can replace you...

Yes! We will have something for Y eventually!

What more need we say?

U is for Urban Myth?
Steve Raible’s book Tales from The Seahawks Sideline throws up an interesting teaser:

Jack Patera once cut a guy for refusing to shave a beard.

“Look, we’re on an expansion team,” Jack told him, “We’ve got to set a standard and I can’t make exceptions. I know what you’ve done in the league, but if you want to play here, you’ve got to shave your beard because everybody else has.”

The player, whose name escapes me, politely refused.

“All right,” Jack said, “I’m going to let you go.”

There was no animosity. Jack explained the rules and they agreed to disagree.

(Steve Raible and Mike Sando, Tales From the Seahawks Sideline, page 133)

Now we love Steve Raible at Becky’s Place (especially after he promised to give us an interview one of these days!), but we might be within our rights to wonder whether Jack Patera made this one up and sold it to the unsuspecting newsman!

There’s no doubt that Patera was in favor of presentation and discipline. Even as he tolerated eccentrics, he enforced rules about looking professional, thinking professional and acting professional.

But what about beards?

If Patera was such a stickler about facial hair, he obviously hadn’t been looking hard at his scouting photos. He selected at least 16 bearded players through the veteran allocation and the draft (we can’t vouch for the players who didn’t have photos in the 1976 publications):

Larry Bates Alvis Darby Jerry Davis Dick Dixon
Ken Geddes Allen Haigler Billy Hardee Gary Hayman
Ken Hutcherson Eddie McMillan John Neuman Bill Olds
Joe Owens Bob Penchion Charles Waddell Lydell Williams

Some of the later arrivals also had a beard, which seems like an unusual ploy from an anti-beard coach. So let’s return to those 16 men who seem to have been covered by the no-beard story.

The first suspect can be removed: Eddie McMillan shaved for the season.

Geddes (5 seasons) and Penchion (4) might have been around long enough to be covered by the comment “I know what you’ve done in the league”, though that would have been a little generous to Penchion, whose career was only just breaking through. Olds was already well-credentialled after 3 seasons, which might get him in, but Hayman was a 3 year veteran who hadn’t made a major impact yet. They all played for Patera during 1976.

Geddes and Penchion played out the season, while Hayman was cut in pre-season and Olds was cut after 2 regular season games. On the evidence, Bill Olds is the one who might have been the target of the story.

But would Patera really have cut him for having a beard while letting others play out the season (and longer for Geddes)? It looks very unlikely!

This may be one for the Mythbusters, but we think this story might just have been a good Patera Prank!

Almost Hall

Almost Hall of Fame

We invite you to visit our special feature, the Almost Hall of Fame, where we honor those Seahawk players who won our hearts even if they haven't won Hall of Fame honors.

Spirit of '76

Go Hawks

We invite you to visit our in-depth feature on the 1976 expansion team, where we honor every known player who had a chance at becoming Seahawk on the 1976 squad! |
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