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1958 NFL championship game: Men who made the moment

Ernie Accorsi watched the 1958 NFL championship game between the New York Giants and Baltimore Colts as a 17-year-old Colts fan. He went on to become general manager of both teams that played in the historic contest. He has probably watched the game 40 times since and picks up something new with each viewing. Here are his thoughts on 10 of the great players from the game:

John Unitas -- "No disrespect to Charlie Conerly,but if Unitas had taken off his jersey and switchedsides, the game would have gone the other way. Everyother advantage for either team was canceled outsomehow. The difference in the game was thedifference between the quarterbacks."

Raymond Berry -- "People talk about his speed,but he probably would have run about a 4.65[40 yards in 4.65 seconds], and plenty of guysget by with that now. He would be the same playertoday that he was then. He would run every routewith precision, he would get open and he wouldcatch everything."

Lenny Moore -- "It's hard to say that a guy isunderrated when he's in the Hall of Fame. But Lennyhad everything -- size, speed, great hands. Jim Brown was the greatest runner I've seen, but heplayed as more of a fullback. Lenny and Gale Sayerswere the greatest halfbacks I've ever seen."

Jim Parker -- "You could scout him from the stillphotos. There he was on the end, blocking out thesun, with the poor defensive end desperately reachingaround him to find a little bit of space. In those days,they didn't always put great athletes on the offensiveline, but he was big, strong and mobile."

Gino Marchetti -- "He just had unbelievablequickness, and when he got near the quarterback, hewas like a 747 banking toward landing. The greatones just have an instinct for closing like that. Foryears, when you talked about the all-time teams, youcould stir up debate at most positions, but no one everquestioned that Gino was the best defensive end.There was no debate."

Gene "Big Daddy" Lipscomb -- "It bothers me tothis day that he's not in the Hall of Fame. Ofanybody from that era who's not in, he deserves itthe most. The really great ones cause you togame-plan for them. Well, I guarantee you thatcoaches game-planned around Big Daddy."Art Donovan -- "In talking to guys from that era,they always said nobody got better penetration inthe middle than Artie. He was very quick."

Frank Gifford -- "Frank didn't have great speed.He'd probably be about a 4.6 guy. But speed isn't theonly thing you need to be a great back. He had greatvision and an instinct for finding holes and wigglingthrough them."

Sam Huff -- "Tom Landry's 4-3 [defense] funneledplays to the middle linebacker, and Huff was a greatone. It was an era of great linebackers, and of course,he played in New York, so people said that's why he gotthe most attention. But he was a great player."

Roosevelt Brown -- "Gifford told me that whenthey used to the run the sweep, he'd have to tellRosey to slow down because he was running toofar ahead of him. ... Jim Parker and Rosey Brownare the greatest left tackles I've ever seen."


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