Sunday, August 31, 2014

1966 Profile: Stew Barber

Offensive Tackle
No. 77
Penn State
"Pro football coaches can be as indecisive as anyone else on occasion. For example, in 1961, when Stew Barber was a rookie out of Penn State, he played linebacker at 228 pounds. When he reported at a new tonnage in 1962, however, it was for a new job. The coaching staff had decided to make him an offensive tackle. So Stew stuffed himself and got up to his present 251 pounds - which is still not overweight for a tackle.
But he manages, even he's a champion worrier about his job. Still, you'll find his name on most All-AFL teams."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Saturday, August 30, 2014

1966 Profile: Wray Carlton

No. 30
"For six years, Wray Carlton has been playing halfback. Most of that time he has been a second banana, especially when Cookie Gilchrist was playing fullback for the Bills. This season though, Wray will have to step front and center. He'll shift over to fullback, mainly because Buffalo has nobody to play there, and he'll have to make like a fair facsimile of Cookie. Carlton, who played his college football at Duke, has the muscle at 6-1 and 225 pounds. And in one respect, being a fullback may help him - he won't have to run outside quite so much. He simply doesn't possess that kind of speed; he never has."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Friday, August 29, 2014

1966 Profile: Butch Byrd

No. 42
Boston University
"When George 'Butch' Byrd joined the Bills out of Boston University, coach Lou Saban immediately planted him at right cornerback on defense. Byrd simply had to make it.
'There was no one else,' Saban now concedes. Butch soon demonstrated his ability in guarding pass receivers. He is large for a defensive back - 211 pounds - but sacrifices no speed and tackles shockingly hard.
His long punt return against San Diego broke open last year's championship game for the Bills."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

1966 Profile: Jim Dunaway

Defensive Tackle
No. 78
"Can a fat boy make his way in pro football? The answer is yes if he weighs in within reason. Ask Jim Dunaway, the 6-4, 279-pound defensive tackle of the Bills. Jim, an All-America at Ole Miss, could easily slide up the scale to 300 pounds, but it would deprive him of some of the mobility that makes him so effective. He and Tom Sestak are an impossible twosome when they rush a quarterback full blast.
In 1962, the Bills made Jim their No. 2 draft pick and outbid the Minnesota Vikings for him."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Thursday, August 28, 2014

1966 Profile: Mike Stratton

No. 58
"He does not have the reputation of a Huff, a Nitschke, a Butkus, or of a Bobby Bell, but Buffalo's star corner linebacker, Mike Stratton, is now in their class.
He's developed rapidly since 1962, when he reported out of Tennessee as a 210-pound rookie. Now Mike weighs 240 pounds and hits accordingly. He is best remembered for demolishing San Diego's Keith Lincoln with a thunderously clean tackle in the 1964 AFL title game. Stratton is fast and a good pass defender. Babe Parilli of Boston once said that Stratton so big, strong and quick that 'it's a crime against quarterbacks to allow him to blitz.'"

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

1966 Profile: Jack Kemp

No. 15
"Sometimes a coach can outsmart himself. In 1962, Sid Gillman of San Diego tried to put his regular quarterback, Jack Kemp, on waivers. It wasn't that Gillman didn't want Kemp, but Jack had an injured finger at the time, and Sid thought that he could hide him on the taxi squad if all other AFL teams waived on him. But Buffalo didn't, and the Bills claimed Kemp for $100, getting an outstanding passer who has since gunned the team to two consecutive league championships.
Jack has one of the strongest arms in the game; some say he can throw the ball farther than any other quarterback (almost 90 yards). He also passes accurately (Jack had a 48.5 completion percentage last year). In the past few seasons, he has shared quarterback duties with Daryle Lamonica; but since the Bills plan to pass more in 1966, look for Jack to dominate the position."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Monday, August 25, 2014

1966 Profile: Elbert Dubenion

No. 44
"In 1960, rookie halfback Elbert Dubenion played so badly in a loss to New York that he was nearly cut from the squad. Fortunately he hung on and eventually established himself as one of the AFL's top flanker backs.
Dubenion, nicknamed 'Golden Wheels,' has rare speed - or at least he did before a severe knee injury sidelined him last year. Surgery has patched him up, and even if he's lost a step, that will only halve the margin he usually has on pursuing defensive backs.
In 1963, he broke a league record by averaging 27 yards per reception, and scored a touchdown every 4.2 catches. At little Bluffton College, he scored 87 times rushing."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Sunday, August 24, 2014

1966 Profile: George Saimes

No. 26
Michigan State
"At Michigan State, coach Duffy Dougherty called George Saimes 'the complete football player' - and played him at offensive back, where he became an All-America. When he joined the Bills, George got a shot at carrying the ball, too, and he did fairly well, averaging 3.4 yards per carry in the two games he played. Then he was shifted to weak side safety on defense. Result: another All-AFLer for the Bills.
George is not big. At 5-10 he sometimes has trouble covering those tall ends, but in the long run, they have even more trouble with him."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Saturday, August 23, 2014

1966 Profile: Billy Shaw

No. 66
Georgia Tech
"If Billy Shaw thinks Tom Sestak is tough, then listen to what Houston Antwine, the wagon-lifting defensive tackle of the Boston Patriots, thinks about Shaw: 'I wouldn't want to be around if he gets much better.' Right now, Captain Billy is considered the outstanding offensive guard in his league. He's got size, 6-2, 250, but more important, he's got the speed to pull out ahead of the ball carrier on running plays, and the desire to tangle with the enormous defensive tackles he must keep off the quarterback's neck.
Shaw is beginning his sixth year with the Bills, and has been an All-AFL two seasons in a row. He was an All-America at Georgia Tech."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Thursday, August 21, 2014

1966 Profile: Tom Sestak

Defensive Tackle
No. 70
McNeese State
"Tough as it may be for anyone in the NFL to admit, Tom Sestak is very probably the best defensive tackle in professional football. Tom stands 6-4 and weighs 270 pounds. Big? Sure. But not overwhelming by pro standards. What makes him stand out, though, is his astonishing strength and his speed in pursuing a play.
He was drafted 17th out of McNeese State in 1962, and has been an All-AFL selection the last three years. Buffalo teammate Billy Shaw claims Tom has helped make him an all-star.
'When you play against Tom in practice every day,' Shaw explains, rubbing his bruises, 'you either improve or retire.'"

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

1966 Profile: Joe Collier

Head Coach
"It has been said of Joe Collier that if the Bills' players had been asked to vote for the man they would most like to see succeed the outgoing Lou Saban as coach, it would have been Joe, 40-0. This is a rare tribute for man who holds himself somewhat aloof from his players and does not court popularity with witty and philosophical phrases. But Joe has stood solidly with his players because they always know where they stand with him.
There are no frills or embellishments. Unless, of course, you want to talk about what he has done with the art of defensive football. It was Joe who designed and implemented the powerhouse Buffalo defense that racked up the San Diego in the last two championship games, a defense that has allowed only nine touchdowns to be scored against it on the ground in the past two seasons.
Joe played end at Northwestern, where he earned All-America rating. He joined Lou Saban's staff at Western Illinois in 1957, and accompanied Lou to Boston and then on to Buffalo after the AFL was formed.
He's a storehouse of football intelligence. He should be. Joe keeps eight filing cabinets at home stocked with football information, and he keeps everything up to date."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Monday, August 18, 2014

1966 Buffalo Bills Outlook

"Don't look for Buffalo to stampede its way to a third consecutive title this year. Some prize Bulls were pulled from the herd to help stock the new team in Miami, leaving the defending AFL champs somewhat more docile than usual. The hunch here is that they'll go home second best this time.
New head coach Joel Collier is inheriting essentially the same team that made a shambles of the Eastern Division race last year. But the Bills aren't as deep in replacements as they formerly were, and an injury here or there could immobilize them. Gone from last season's squad are fullback Billy Joe, split end Bo Roberson, offensive tackle Jim Davidson and defensive tackle Howard Simpson to Miami, as well as defensive tackle Tom Keating and guard George Flint to Oakland as payment for obtaining Roberson last year. But perhaps the Bills' biggest loss is that of kicking specialist Pete Gogolak who skipped to the New York Giants.
The framework of Buffalo's powerful defense is still intact, though. Roland McDole, Jim Dunaway, Tom Sestak and Tom Day comprise the most explosive foursome in the league. They are so good at harassing the passer that they often go into a three-man rush, leaving Day, the lightweight of the unit at 6-3 and 254 pounds, to drop back as an extra linebacker. And there is nothing tame about the linebacking corps, either. John Tracey, Harry Jacobs and Mike Stratton are a seasoned and aggressive combination that usually anticipates the opposition's thinking. Bill Laskey and Marty Schottenheimer are able reserves.
Nobody intimidates the deep pass-defending combo of cornerbacks Booker Edgerson and Butch Byrd, and safetymen Hagood Clarke and George Saimes, which accounted for 21 interceptions last year. And in Charley Warner and Gene Sykes, the club has experienced reinforcements; rookies who could help out are Charley King from Purdue and his brother Tony from Findlay College.
The offense will get its cue from Jack Kemp, the wizard who plays quarterback for the Bills. Jack finished fourth among the league's passers last year, but he was second to none in field generalship. Behind him the Bills have Daryle Lamonica, who could play first-string for practically any other club in the league. The passing attack was considerably handicapped last year when both Glenn Bass and Elbert Dubenion were knocked out of action. They're fit again, and Dubenion claims he worked his way back into shape as a truant officer during the off-season. The other receiver is tight end Paul Costa, who was the only rookie to crash the regular lineup last season. In reserve, the Bills have Ed Rutkowski and Ernie Warlick, who came through in old pro style in the championship game. The best rookie prospect is split end Bobby Crockett of Arkansas.
The running game doesn't shape up as overpowering, and this is where the Bills may feel the pinch this season. Wray Carlton moves back to the fullback slot where he's better suited, and a host of candidates, led by Bobby Smith, will try to wrest the regular halfback job. Smith is a third-year man with good potential but he has never put things together. Bob Burnett, the No. 4 draft choice from Arkansas, Pete Mills and Ken McLean are his chief rivals. Another hopeful is fullback Willie Ross, a third-year man who is rated as an exceptional pass blocker.
Across the interior line, tackles Stew Barber and Dick Hudson, guards Bill Shaw and Joe O'Donnell and center Al Bemiller will still menace the opposition. But the ranks are thin behind them. Dave Behrman, the regular center, has back problems and nobody will know how serious they are until he attempts to play. Remi Prudhomme is a second-year guard, and rookies Bill Earhart and Wayne DeSutter are the replacements at tackle."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1966

Sunday, August 17, 2014

1965 Bills Rookie Profiles

Offensive Tackle
1st Round
Ohio State
"Jim Davidson, the 6-3, 240-pound All-America from Ohio State, figures to break in at guard. He's rated a fine pass blocker."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

3rd Round
"Al Atkinson, a Villanova All-American, will be tried at offensive tackle. He's 6-2, 225 pounds."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

1965 Profile: Billy Joe

No. 33
"Nobody can replace Cookie Gilchrist, the closest AFL approximation to Jimmy Brown, but Billy Joe will try. Joe is the fullback the Bills got from the Denver Broncos in exchange for Cookie. A one-time 60-foot shot putter at Villanova, Billy is every bit as big as Gilchrist - 6-2, 250 pounds.
In 1963 he was AFL Rookie of the Year when he was the sixth-ranking ball carrier in the league with a 4.2-yard average. But last year, dogged by injuries and a porous blocking line, he did relatively little.
Joe is six years younger than Cookie, and maybe faster, but he's not as good a blocker. Not yet, at least."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Buffalo fans are anxious to see Billy Joe in action in 1965. This fullback was acquired from the Denver Broncos during the off-season for All-Star Cookie Gilchrist.
Billy was the AFL Rookie of the Year in 1963. In 1964, he was the leading rusher for the Broncos.
The Bills' new acquisition is six years younger than Cookie but just as big!"

-1965 Topps No. 33

1965 Profiles: Pete Gogolak and Paul Maguire

Place Kicker
No. 3
"Now all the pros are searching for soccer-style place-kickers, but the Bills have the prototype in Pete Gogolak, the Hungarian refugee with the weird (for football) kicking technique. Pete approaches the ball from a 45-degree angle and boots it with his instep, the way soccer players do.
He kicked 45 out of 46 extra points as a 1964 rookie and made 18 of 29 field goal attempts. He had a 57-yarder in an exhibition game against the Jets, so he must be doing something right."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Just to show you how important a good kicker is to a club, Pete was responsible for 25% of Buffalo's scoring in 1964. The sure-toed Bill led Buffalo in total points. Pete kicked 45 extra points in 46 attempts and was 19-for-28 in field goal attempts.
Pete set an AFL record with a 57-yard field goal."

1965 Topps No. 30

No. 55
The Citadel
"The Bills grabbed Paul Maguire when they learned he was available from the San Diego Chargers. In his five seasons of ball in the American Football League, he has earned the reputation of being one of the game's really tough, hard-hitting linebackers.
At the Citadel, Paul was named All-State, All-Southern Conference and All-America. He caught 10 touchdown passes in 1959."

-1965 Topps No. 37

Friday, August 15, 2014

1965 Profiles: Stew Barber and Dick Hudson

Offensive Tackle
No. 77
Penn State
"Hard-working, heavy-hitting Stew Barber is one of the three top offensive tackles in the young league - the others being Ron Mix of San Diego and Jim Tyrer of Kansas City.
Stew, a 251-pounder who played at Penn State, was a linebacker during his rookie season in 1961. But since that time, he's been a citadel at left tackle. At the age of 26, he is launching his fifth pro season. Talk about opportunities in the AFL!"

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"A veteran of five years in the American Football League, Stew was a No. 4 draft pick back in 1961. The big tackle played as a linebacker during his rookie season. Buffalo coaches were sure that Stew would serve the team best as a tackle and how right they were.
Because of his top-flight performances, Stew has been named to several All-American Football League teams (he was named as All-AFL in 1964). Now recognized as one of pro football's biggest stars, Stew credits hard work as the key to success."

-1965 Topps No. 23

Offensive Tackle
No. 79
Memphis State
"Dick joined the Buffalo Bills after the 1962 season. As a freshman in the American Football League with the San Diego Chargers, Dick impressed the fans and the brass.
Used as a right tackle with Buffalo, Dick suffered a serious knee injury during the second game of the 1963 season. He sat out the rest of the campaign, but the strong-willed tackle turned in a solid performance last year. One of the biggest tackles in the game, Dick has the speed and quickness to go with his size.
Dick teaches school during the off-season."

-1965 Topps No. 31

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

1965 Profile: Wray Carlton

No. 30
"At 220 pounds, Wray Carlton is one of the biggest halfbacks in football, and he perfectly rounds out the Bills' 'Elephant Backfield.'
Wray comes off a disappointing season in 1964 in which he missed all but the last three games through injury. He returned just in time, however, to gain 114 important rushing yards and supply vital blocking muscle ahead of Cookie Gilchrist.
Carlton, a seven-year veteran in the pros, is not a fast man but he picks his holes well, drives hard and is rated a better-than-average pass receiver."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Wray was back in action late last year, much to his opposition's dismay, after being sidelined due to injuries in 1963
As a rookie with the Bills in 1960, No. 30 was the club's leading ball carrier. Wray led the Bills with 18 carries in the 1964 championship game.
With a good pair of hands, Wray is one of the top receivers in the AFL."

-1965 Topps No. 26

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

1965 Profiles: Elbert Dubenion and Bo Roberson

No. 44
"Elbert 'Golden Wheels' Dubenion, the Buffalo flanker, would almost certainly be a superstar if the Bills passed more. He's as swift as anybody going down under the long bomb, and he has perfected his fakes since breaking in as a green rookie from Bluffton six years ago.
Duby caught only 42 passes in '64, well below the top ten in the league. But he gained a record-breaking 27 yards per catch and scored ten touchdowns."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Many fans argue that Elbert is the finest man in the pro leagues today.
'Golden Wheels' had another banner season in 1964 as he averaged a record-breaking 27 yards per reception. Elbert's big day last year was against the Chiefs when he caught two touchdown passes. In 1962, he scored with a 100-yard kickoff return.
Elbert scored 57 touchdowns in high school."

-1965 Topps No. 28

No. 46
"Considered one of the fastest men in the league, Bo led the circuit in kickoff returns in 1964. He has been the starting flankerback for Oakland the past three seasons.
A top athlete, Bo ranked among the all-time scorers in Philadelphia prep basketball, trailing only Wilt Chamberlain and Guy Rodgers. He won a Silver Medal in broad-jumping in the 1960 Olympics."

-1965 Topps No. 149

Monday, August 11, 2014

1965 Bills Linebacker Profiles

Middle Linebacker
No. 64
"This powerful linebacker is in his second year with the Buffalo Bills. The Bills purchased Harry from the Boston Patriots in 1963 where he was named the 'baby-faced assassin' by the Boston sportswriters. Harry did a topnotch job as the middle linebacker, a position left vacant when Archie Matsos was dealt to the Oakland Raiders.
Harry was named Athlete of the Year at Bradley."

-1965 Topps No. 32

No. 58
"Buffalo's Mike Stratton is a young man on his way to stardom. The smartest thing the Bills ever did was to switch Stratton, who was drafted as an offensive end, to a linebacker spot.
In two short years, he has built up a reputation as a vicious tackler- to which San Diego's Keith Lincoln will readily attest. It was Mike who separated Lincoln's ribs in the 1964 championship game and turned the complexion of the contest around.
And it was Stratton who kept popping up all over the place whenever the Bills needed a big play last season. Take Thanksgiving Day in San Diego as an example. The Chargers were leading by 10 points in the last quarter when Stratton tackled quarterback John Hadl for a safety. Then, with a minute left to play and the score tied, Stratton intercepted the pass that set up the winning field goal.
Mike, just 24, stands 6-3, weighs 240 and is still growing- which has the Bills worried. He might get too big. Then he'd have to settle for being one of the best defensive linemen, instead of one of the best linebackers, in the game."

-Sports All-Stars/1965 Pro Football

"Regarded as one of the game's finest linebackers, Mike is sure to improve in 1965. This powerful player is a tough man to elude once he's set his sights on his next victim. Mike spearheads the red-dogging assault of the Bills.
Originally drafted from Tennessee as an offensive end, Mike made the switch to linebacker as a result of coach Lou Saban's suggestion.
Mike spends his spare time fishing."

-1965 Topps No. 42

No. 51
Texas A & M
"The defensive captain of the Buffalo Bills, John joined the club early in 1962. Shortly thereafter, he won a regular job on the team as left linebacker. A double-threat veteran, John can also play as an offensive end.
John holds the Texas A & M record for most passes caught and most yardage gained.
John's hobby is photography."

-1965 Topps No. 43

Saturday, August 9, 2014

1965 Profile: Daryle Lamonica

No. 12
Notre Dame
"When the Bills go their ball control game, Daryle Lamonica usually replaces Jackie Kemp at quarterback. Lamonica, a big fellow at 6-3 and 215 pounds, is a harder runner than Kemp and is a good rollout passer. Usually, he will sit on the bench while Kemp probes the rival defense, then come in and exploit its weaknesses. Daryle passed only 126 times last year, completing 55.
He played college ball at Notre Dame, and was the Most Valuable Player in the 1962 East-West Shrine Game."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Capable of throwing the long bomb, Daryle is considered one of the top quarterbacks in the AFL. Only the fact that All-Star Jack Kemp plays for Buffalo keeps Daryle from seeing more action.
Daryle passed for 349 yards in the 1962 East-West Shrine Game. The young man from Notre Dame holds the school record with four touchdowns in one game."

-1965 Topps No. 36

Friday, August 8, 2014

1965 Profiles: Glenn Bass and Ernie Warlick

Split End
No. 85
East Carolina
"A natural-born athlete, Glenn turned down bids by major league scouts, to sign a football contract instead.
Originally drafted by the San Diego Chargers, the speedster signed with the Bills as a free agent in 1961. As a rookie, Glenn caught 50 passes for Buffalo. He played as a running back for Buffalo in 1963."

-1965 Topps No. 24

Tight End
No. 84
North Carolina College
"Some Buffalo fans worry that Ernie Warlick may be wearing thin at age 33. This 6-4, 235-pound blocking end has played eight pro seasons, five in Canada and the last three in Buffalo.
As a tight end, Ernie's main job is knocking people down, but he's surprisingly good at catching passes with his enormous hands. Last year he caught 23 passes for 478 yards - that's 20.5 yards per catch, which is excellent for a tight end.
Ernie was an All-Star in Canada and has been close to it in the AFL."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Nicknamed 'Big Hoss' because he can really gallop after those long passes, Ernie has a fine pair of hands.
After playing for North Carolina, Ernie spent some time in the Canadian Football League. Sought after by three AFL clubs, Ernie elected to sign with the Bills. He led Buffalo when he caught 35 passes in 1962."

-1965 Topps No. 44

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

1965 Profiles: Billy Shaw and Al Bemiller

No. 66
Georgia Tech
"It's no accident that the Bills pack tremendous power in their ground attack. They've got the ball-carriers, sure, but they've also got a bulldozing offensive guard in 248-pound Billy Shaw. He pries those holes open.
Billy was All-AFL last year, and he could be just as effective on defense. That's where he earned his All-America college reputation at Georgia Tech.
Bill's also captain of the Bills."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Probably the greatest testimony to Billy Shaw's all-around ability was rendered by his teammates. They picked him as their captain, and when you think of the number of guards who are team captains in professional football, it is, indeed, quite a tribute.
'Billy is perhaps the finest pulling guard in the league,' says Buffalo coach Lou Saban. 'But more important, he puts out every time the ball is snapped.' Saban is also convinced that the 26-year-old Shaw will continue to improve because Billy was primarily noted as more of a defensive player than anything else at Georgia Tech, his alma mater.
In recent years, the Bills have built the best ground game in the league. During their championship 1964 season, they racked up 2,400 yards via rushing, and a great many of those came as the result of bone-crunching blocks by Shaw. Most AFL observers agree that Billy and Stew Barber form the best guard-tackle combination in the loop."

-Sports All-Stars/1965 Pro Football

"If you want to hear a coach rave about one of his players, bring up the name of Billy Shaw in front of Lou Saban. Named to the past two All-AFL clubs, the offensive and team captain of the Bills has not nearly reached his full potential. Billy's speed and agility make him one of the best blockers in the business.
Billy played in the 1961 Coaches All-America Game. Drafted by Buffalo in 1961, the big guy rates as one of the Bills' best picks.
In his spare time, Billy loves to hunt and fish."

-1965 Topps No. 41

No. 50
"The stamp of a pro is his willingness to do what's best for the team. Al Bemiller was a regular offensive center for three years, ever since he beat out All-AFL Dan McGrew for the job as a rookie in 1961. But last year, the Bills picked up veteran center Walt Cudzik, so Bemiller moved to guard and fit into a championship unit.
Al's a 260-pound iron man who's never missed a minute of league play. He's a clever lineman who knows how to finesse an opponent into doing what he wants him to do."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"A highly touted rookie when he joined the Bills in 1961, Al is durable and tough. The strong center is a great blocker and terrific on pass protection. Since his rookie campaign, Al has put on 15 pounds.
Al attracted the pro scouts when he was named an All-East collegian while at Syracuse. Drafted No. 7 by Buffalo, he was voted 'the college center with the best pro potential.' A fast man with quick reflexes, he was a wrestling champion in prep school.
During the off-season, Al works in Buffalo. He raised German Shepherds as a youngster."

-1965 Topps No. 25

Sunday, August 3, 2014

1965 Profile: George Saimes

No. 26
Michigan State
"George Saimes has made the conversion from All-America running back (at Michigan State) to All-AFL as a defensive safetyman. And the transition took him only two seasons. George plays the weak side safety. Thus, he's called upon to guard the split end.
At 5-10, he gives away a lot of height, yet he gets the job done. He intercepted six passes last year and he returned them for 56 yards.
He's a solid if unspectacular player."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Even though he had been a consensus All-American at Michigan State, and the most valuable Spartan player for two years, George Saimes didn't shape up as much of a pro prospect. He stood a mere 5-10 and weighed just 185, hardly the ideal specifications for offense. However, coach Duffy Daugherty had called Saimes 'a complete football player,' so Buffalo was willing to give him a shot.
Although he had been noted for his ability as a runner, the Bills decided to see how well George could track down a ball thrown by an opposing quarterback. He learned his lessons as a defender so well that he made the starting lineup in the third game of his rookie season.
Last year, his second with Buffalo, George was the big reason that the Bills were so vastly improved on pass defense. If didn't take long for him to build a reputation as one of the best 'play readers' in the league. Almost immediately after assuming his safety role, he reacted naturally to breaking down pass patterns and getting to the right spot at the proper time. There's no doubt he'll do it again this season."

-Sports All-Stars/1965 Pro Football

"Originally drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs, George has been called 'a defensive stickout' by several coaches. He has been a regular ever since joining Buffalo.
In his rookie campaign in 1963, George began his career with the Bills as a running back. In college, he was a consensus All-America halfback and was twice voted Michigan State's Most Valuable Player."

-1965 Topps No. 39

Friday, August 1, 2014

1965 Profile: Jack Kemp

No. 15
"Funny, but Jackie Kemp used to be considered a top-running quarterback. Now he's the pass-master in Buffalo's twin-quarterback offense. Jackie has one of the most powerful throwing arms in football.
He was claimed by the Bills from San Diego in 1962, and the Chargers are still furious about it. It seems they had tried to slip Jack by on waivers while he was recovering from an injury. After having helped the Chargers win consecutive Western Division titles in 1960 and '61, he played turnabout by going against his old mates last year and beating them for the AFL crown."

-Jack Zanger, Pro Football 1965

"Last year Jack had another banner season with the Bills, as he led Buffalo to the AFL championship. He scored a touchdown rushing in the championship game.
The strong-armed passer was acquired from San Diego where he helped the Chargers to divisional titles in 1960 and 1961. Jack has been selected to five consecutive AFL All-Star teams."

-1965 Topps No. 35