Here is a quiz on some of the greatest players in NFL history that is based on materials from Pillars of the NFL: Coaches Who Have Won Three or More Championships.
1. He was called the Ice Man by some, not because he was cool under pressure, but because when he was a young man he actually delivered blocks of ice for pay. The work helped make him a very strong running back in the early days of professional football. In fact, he was the greatest running back of his time for a very short time. He was so difficult to tackle, one sportswriter called him the "galloping ghost," another called him the "gray ghost." Who was the football spirit?
2. Chuck Noll insisted that the Steelers make this football warrior their top pick in Noll's first draft. The big tackle anchored one of the best defenses in professional football history. Who was he?
3. One of several football players who was called Bulldog, this Hall of Fame tackle was considered the best in the league when he was at his peak. He played for the Colts and was known for his expansive sense of humor. He got a late start in professional football because he served during World War II.
4. This Steelers' running back left the team to serve in Viet Nam. He was injured so severely that most everyone except the running back himself thought he had no chance of ever playing again. With the Rooney family's support and encouragement, he returned to play with Franco Harris and the other Steelers during the Noll dynasty.
5. A tremendous field goal kicker who was called "the Toe." He was a key player under Paul Brown's dominant Cleveland Browns teams.
6. An African American who Paul Brown recruited and knew well from their days together at the Great Lakes Naval Station during World War II. He was an overpowering fullback in the same way that Bronko Nagurski had been a generation before. This Hall of Famer could also play linebacker. Who was he?
7. An offensive guard, who Lombardi considered one of his greatest players. This man was a key contributor to Lombardi's Green Bay Sweep. Lombardi worked him unceasingly in practice.
8. Some consider him to be the finest NFL receiver of all time. He played for San Francisco for 16 of his 20 prolific years. Who is this Hall of Fame receiver that San Francisco selected in the first round of the 1985 draft?
9. Great quarterbacks and their coaches sometimes enjoy inseparable careers. This quarterback is one of the very best today although when he was snagged in the sixth round from the University of Michigan.
10. This African American quarterback played for Tampa Bay and then the USFL before Joe Gibbs, who knew him well, picked him up as a backup. In 1987, he stepped in to lead the Redskins after the starting quarterback was injured. Who was this quarterback who led the Super Bowl XXII champion Redskins?
Answers to the quiz on NFL great players.
1. The Ice Man was the magnificent Red Grange who delivered ice in Wheaton, Illinois before the days of electric refrigerators. .
2. Chuck Noll began it all with Mean Joe Greene.
3. Art "Bulldog" Donovan was one of the most colorful players of all time.
4. Many who were alive during the Vietnam era and the Steelers' dynasty will never forget Rocky Bleier.
5. Lou "the Toe" Groza was worth his weight in gold.
6. Marion Motely was a superb football player at every level of play who Bud Grant called "my all-time hero."
7. Jerry Kramer got a lot of attention from Vince Lombardi and Kramer returned the attention with his post career books including the classic Instant Replay.
8. Jerry Rice was grace, skill, and guts in one package. He is considered one of the top football players of all time--and many consider him the best of the best.
9. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick have intersecting careers. Belichick early on recognized Brady as his team leader.
10. Doug Williams was exactly what the Redskins needed.
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