Saturday, June 14, 2014

1963 Bills Linebacker Profiles

Middle Linebacker
No. 54
Drafted by the Lions and traded to the Bears, Harry began his pro career as a defensive end in Boston in 1960, intercepting four passes that year. By last season he was a middle linebacker, his position as he joins Buffalo. He looks mild-mannered off the field but is already known as a ferocious hitter on the field.
A guard, tackle and defensive end as a collegian, Harry was Bradley's athlete of the year for 1958-59 and played in the College All-Star Game.

No. 58
"Pro ball brings out the utmost in a player. Take Mike Stratton, who reported as a rookie offensive end in '62, as an example. Drafted as a 210-pounder, he weighed 237 in training camp and exhibited such excellent lateral movements that he was quickly made into a linebacker. Extremely fast, he sometimes outruns his own linemen into the enemy backfield. He must learn to play his position instead of the ball before qualifying among the league's superstars.
Mike was born in Yonore, Tennessee."

-Don Schiffer, Pro Football 1963

"The folks around Knoxville remember Mike as a rangy end who liked to grab off passes, but when Mike reported to the Buffalo Bills last year he was no longer the 210 pounds of his Vol days. He weighed in at 237, all of it solid, and the best thing was none of his speed was affected.
So the Bills placed him at linebacker, and he won himself a regular job and a station on the all-league rookie team."

-1963 Fleer No. 32

No. 85
Texas A & M
John was an offensive end as a Chicago Cardinal rookie and a linebacker for two seasons before coming to Buffalo in 1962. That year he became a regular at linebacker early in the season but can still fill in at end.
As a senior end at Texas A & M, John led the Southwest Conference in receptions (37, a school record and fourth in the NCAA that year) and receiving yards (466, also a school record and 10th in the NCAA).

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