One of the popular pre-season favourites to contend for an NFL Championship are the electric Philadelphia Eagles. If the cards fall correctly, they could be hoisting an NFL championship for the first time in nearly 50-two years.
A lot has happened to the members of that 1960 Philadelphia Eagles since they beat Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers on Monday, December 26th.
Here’s what they’ve been up to…
Brocklin was also known as 'The Dutchman,' and he eventually became a Hall-of-Famer in 1971.
The 1960 Championship season was also Van Brocklin's twelfth and final season in the league. The numbers that The Dutchman put up in that short amount of time during that era are good by those standards, but average by ours.
Van Brocklin went on to coach the expansion Minnesota Vikings immediately following his retirement. He accumulated an unimpressive 29-51-4 record. He spent most his time there fighting with Minnesota quarterback Fran Tarkenton. After a one-year-long job broadcasting for CBS, Van Brocklin coached the Atlanta Falcons. He went 37-49-3 while there.
Van Brocklin died on May 2nd, 1983, the day after suffering a stroke.
Jurgensen was a back-up to starter Norm Van Brocklin during the 1960 campaign, but he would go onto to have a Hall-of-Fame career. He made the Pro Bowl roster for the 1961 season, and made four more with the Washington Redskins.
Right after his career concluded in 1974, Jurgensen became a colour commentator. He currently covers the Redskins on the radio with fellow Hall-of-Famer Sam Huff. They are about to enter their 31st season together.
Clarence Peaks became an Eagles analyst on Philadelphia radio and later turned into a financial consultant
Clarence Peaks was a steady presence in Philadelphia for seven seasons after being selected by the Eagles in the first round of the 1957 draft, but he missed most of the 1960 season due to injury.
After finishing his career in Pittsburgh, Peaks went back to Philadelphia to work at WIP-AM 610 as an analyst. He did well enough at WIP that ABC eventually hired him as a television analyst. He eventually left the broadcasting world to become a consultant at the firm A.L. Williams (now known as Primerica).
Peaks died on March 31, 2007 at a nursing home in Voorhees, PA at the age of 71.
Barnes made the Pro Bowl in all three of his first three seasons in the league (1957-59), and was a a key cog in Philly's running attack in the 1960 season. After two solid seasons in Washington, his career steadily declined.
After his retirement, Barnes entered the coaching game. He became the head coach of the CFL's Charleston Rockets in 1968. He later became an assistant coach in the NFL under former teammate Norm Van Brocklin.
Barnes now leads a quiet life away from football.
Brookshier was the defensive back quarterbacks feared facing most while sharing the gridiron with the 1960 Philadelphia Eagles. During that season, he was selected to the first team All-Pro roster. Unfortunately, Brookshier's career ended the next season after sustaining a compound fracture in a game against the Bears. He is one of seven Eagles to have their playing number retired.
Like many retired professional athletes, Brookshier became a member of the sports media, however he excelled at it more than most. He started out at WCAU-AM-FM-TV and became their sports director within a year. He left that post to join CBS as a colour commentator for the Eagles in 1965.
In the 1970s, Brookshier teamed with legendary football voice Pat Summerall to co-host This Week in Pro Football. This partnership eventually became the most popular football commentary tandem in the country through most of the 70s. In 1981, Brookshier became a play-by-play guy and Summerall partnered up with John Madden. He continued to act as a play-by-play guy with CBS until 1987.
After a brief foray into radio and real estate consulting, Brookshier retired from all jobs. He lived quietly with his family in the suburbs of Philadelphia until he succumbed to cancer on January 29th, 2010.
From 1951 to 1962, Bobby Walston was a mainstay of the Eagles roster. He played three very different offensive positions: tight end, half back, and kicker.
Tight end was the position Walston most excelled at, even though he twice led the league's kickers in field goal percentage. As an end, he hauled in 40-six touchdown receptions. He was selected to both the 1960 and 1961 Pro Bowls.
Walston passed away on October 7th, 1987.
The recently deceased Gerry Huth donated his brain and spinal cord to scientists researching football related head injuries
Gerry Huth's claim to fame was providing the key block that sprung back Ted Dean into the end zone which clinched the 1960 championship. In addition to that, Huth was a steady guard for six years in the NFL, but his career was shortened due to injuries and a tour of duty in the U.S. Army.
His last public appearance was on September 12th, 2010, where he participated in the events surrounding the Eagles 50th anniversary of their most recent title.
Huth, who died back on February 11th of this year, made some news recently when it was revealed that his brain and spinal cord were donated to researchers at Boston University so they could study the effects of football sustained head injuries.
'The Baron' was a college track star turned running back turned receiver. He was a two sport athlete at South Dakota State College, and he once rushed for 1,016 yards for the school in 1952. Despite his clear ability to run with a football in his hands, none of his collegiate quarterbacks ever threw a pass his way.
After a two-year stint in the US Army, the Detroit Lions who had originally drafted him sold him to the Eagles. It was a mistake that the Lions surely regretted.
Upon arrival, Retzlaff became one of quarterback Norm Van Brocklin's favourite targets. In his third year with the team, he led the NFL in receptions. He eventually made five Pro-Bowls (he received an invite in the Eagles' championship season), one All-Pro team, and the Bert Bell Award in 1965.
Three years after Retzlaff's career ended in 1966, he served as the vice president and general manager of the Eagles. He kept that position until 1972. Following that, he became a colour analyst for CBS football broadcasts. He has kept a much lower profile since leaving his CBS post in 1974.
Fun fact about Tommy McDonald: he was the last non-kicker in the NFL to not wear a full face mask.
McDonald played for five different teams, and had a successful NFL career that lead to an enshrinement in Canton, Ohio. He also went to six Pro-Bowls during his career.
After McDonald was done with football, he stayed out of the spotlight. He took up painting as a hobby, and once sold a portrait of Joe DiMaggio for $4,000.
Jim McCusker had a brief NFL career. He lasted only five seasons as a defensive tackle in the NFL. His 1960 Championship was surely McCuckser's biggest accomplishment while in the league.
Presently, McCusker owns a restaurant and bar known as 'The Pub' in his hometown of Jamestown, NY. He and his wife, Mary, co-run the establishment.
After having his career cut short due to injuries, Ted Dean became an educator in the Philadelphia area
In the year after the Eagles won it all, running back Ted Dean was elected to his first and only Pro Bowl. This came as a disappointment to Dean and several others as it was widely believed that Dean could have been a legendary back with his unique combination of size and speed.
However, Dean could never stay healthy and never reached his potential. After suffering more injuries in a car crash while playing for the Vikings, Dean's career was effectively over.
Dean became a respected educator in Philadelphia not too long after his career ended, so things ended up working out fairly well for him.
John Wittenborn played for three different teams over his 11-year career. He spent time as a both a kicker and a guard, which is a combination we'll never again see in the NFL.
In his last two seasons in the league while playing for the Houston Oilers, Wittenborn went from guard-kicker hybrid to just a full time kicker.
Not much else is known about Wittenborn's post football career.
Stan Campbell had an eight-year long career in football and won three league championships in that time. Coincidentally, he was part of the Detroit Lions most recent championship in 1957 as well as the last Eagles title.
After hanging up the cleats for good, he implored others to do the same before walking on the rug. He opened his own carpet cleaning business post playing career in Rockford, Illinois.
Campbell married his college sweetheart, had four kids, but he would end up going through a divorce.
Later in life, Campbell was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. On March 14th, 2005, Campbell died of pancreatic cancer.
Richardson had a successful 11-year tenure playing professional football. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1959, won the title in 1960, and remained a solid player until he signed with the Boston Patriots during the waning hours of his career.
He served as an assistant coach for both of his former teams after he retired at the age of 34. Sadly, his coaching career didn't last as long as it could have. Jess Richardson succumbed to kidney disease only 10 years after retirement.
Ed Khayat had two very good seasons with Philadelphia and one solid year in Washington, but he was a below average NFLer for most of his career.
Khayat served as the head coach of the Eagles from 1971-72. His record with the team was an unimpressive 8-15-2.
In 1991, he became a head coach in the new Arena Football League. His first job was with the New Orleans Night. He went on to have more success as a coach with his next team, the Nashville Katz. In 1997, his first year running the team, he was named the Arena Football Coach of the Year. He later became a General Manager within the organisation.
Marion Campbell was a rarity as far as football goes. He didn't become a bona fide NFL star until the two seasons prior to his last season in the league. Most players perform better earlier in their career until injuries catch up with them, but Campbell became exceptional in the later stages.
As a coach, however, Campbell was anything but exceptional. Out of all coaches that have ever lasted more than three seasons in the league, Campbell has the third worst winning percentage of all-time.
He held coaching positions first with the Atlanta Falcons from 1974-76. He then went on to be the defensive coordinator for the Eagles, and was eventually promoted to head coach there. He was fired from that post in 1985. Somewhat unbelievably, the Falcons hired him back as coach in 1987 and stayed there until 1989.
Freeman excelled from the strong safety position during the Eagles 1960 Championship run. He recorded a career high four interceptions and started in all twelve of their games.
Goose played in six NFL seasons total, and only two more after winning it all. He finished with fifteen career picks. As soon as his playing days were over, he took a coaching position at Auburn University. He stayed on their coaching staff for 10 years and lived a quiet life after that.
Freeman passed away on December 30th, 2003 in Auburn, Alabama.
Chuck Weber had an exceptional season during the Eagles 1960 run. He recorded six interceptions and recovered two fumbles.
Weber would later become the defensive coordinator for two different organisations. He first worked for the Cincinnati Bengals from 1970 until 1975 when he resigned. Five years later, he was hired to replace his former teammate Maxie Baughan as defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Colts. He stayed in that post for only a year.
The 1960 Eagles were absolutely stacked at the linebacker position. Along with Chuck Bendarik, Baughan was selected to several Pro Bowls and a handful of All-Pro teams. Somewhat surprisingly, he has yet to be inducted to the Eagles Ring of honour and the National Football Hall-of-Fame.
In 1975, Baughan was named defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Colts. He followed that with a stint in Detroit in the very same position. While he was with the Colts, the team won three straight AFC East Championships.
In 1983, Baughan became the head coach of Cornell football. In 1988, he led Cornell to their first Ivy League Championship since 1971. After that champion season, Baughan returned to the NFL sidelines and had assistant coaching jobs with the Vikings, Buccaneers, and Ravens. He's been out of football since 1998.
Carr played nine seasons in the NFL, but spent more than double that amount of time as an assistant coach in the league.
He worked for 10 different NFL teams, and had coaching positions with teams in the USFL and NFL Europe as well. Carr was an especially innovative defensive coordinator. He is credited as being one of the key figures behind the creation of the nickel defence, atypical zone blitz packages, and eleven-man fronts.
Bill Belichick, Fritz Shurmur, Floyd Reese, and Jerry Glanville had positions under Carr and all four credit him as an asset to their respective careers.
Don Burroughs ran a trucking company, a beer distributor, a restaurant, and an oil delivery company after playing football
Don Burroughs was a 6'5' NFL safety, which is certainly an uncommon thing in today's game. The best season he ever had in the league just so happened to coincide with the Eagles 1960 championship,
After football was done, Burroughs became a businessman. He owned a successful beer distributorship, a restaurant, and a company that supplied fuel to off-shore oil rigs.
On October 26th, 2001, Burroughs died after a battle with cancer.
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