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Morning Briefing

That's Humor in Green Bay

January 29, 1987

Wisconsin Atty. Gen. Don Hanaway said Wednesday a new state prison would be built in Green Bay. The reason?

"So the Packers can walk to work," he said.

It was meant as a joke, but not everyone is laughing. Mossy Cade and James Lofton of the Packers have been charged with sexual assault in separate incidents and are scheduled to be tried in May.

Hanaway's statement, made in a luncheon speech, raised a few eyebrows, but the Packers have declined comment.

It turned out that Hanaway's joke was written by his press secretary, Frank Ryan.

Said Ryan: "This may turn out to be the greatest controversy in Wisconsin since former Gov. Dreyfus' wife referred to honey as bee poop."

Just Asking: Does the selection of John Henry Johnson to the Pro Football Hall of Fame make the 1954 San Francisco 49er backfield the greatest ever?

Y.A. Tittle, Hugh McElhenny and Joe Perry, the other three members of the backfield, already were in the Hall of Fame.

Johnson, a rookie that year, says: "I had to be the blocking back because neither Perry nor McElhenny could block. They could run, though, and they could catch the ball."

Johnson was joking. That year, he was the league's second-leading rusher behind Perry. Perry averaged 6.1 yards per carry, Johnson 5.3 yards. McElhenny, who missed six games with injuries, averaged 8.0 yards, best in the league.

How tough was Larry Csonka, also named to the Hall of Fame? Former Detroit Lion Coach Monte Clark once said: "When he goes on a safari, the lions roll up their windows."

Trivia Time: Former Raider guard Gene Upshaw, named to the Hall of Fame, is the only man in Super Bowl history to do what? (Answer below.)

Now-it-can-be-told dept.: Phil Simms told the New York Times that when he got sacked on a play from the Denver one-yard line in the fourth quarter Sunday, Coach Bill Parcells went into a rage.

Said Parcells: "Mostly I was mad at myself, for having called a lousy play, but I took it out on Phil."

Said Simms: "I couldn't believe it. Bill is calling from the sidelines, 'C'mere, c'mere.' And he starts cussin' me out that I should have thrown the ball away rather than get sacked. And we're ahead, what, 33-13 or something? But that's typical, and he had a point at that."

Word of Warning: If your team takes a 3-0 lead in Super Bowl XXII, forget it. In the last three Super Bowls, Miami, New England and Denver have taken 3-0 leads and turned them into respective losses of 38-16, 46-10 and 39-20.

Trivia Answer: He is the only man to play in the Super Bowl in three different decades. He played against Green Bay in 1968, Minnesota in 1977 and Philadelphia in 1981.


Paul Hornung, to a New York writer who suggested that the Giants had the makings of an NFL dynasty: "When you win five championships in seven years, then come talk to me."

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