Tuufuli Uperesa, who played briefly for the Eagles in 1971, passed away on June 21, 2021 at age 73. He was born in American Samoa in 1948, and died there as well.
Monday, June 28, 2021
Sunday, May 30, 2021
Wednesday, April 21, 2021
Leroy Keyes, the Eagles' 1st-round pick in 1969, passed away on April 15, 2021 at age 74.
Tuesday, March 2, 2021
Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Monday, January 18, 2021
That wraps up the player reviews for those whose Eagles' career started in the 1960s (or 1950s, for Pete Retzlaff). Next we will look at the players who began their Eagles' career in the 1970s, in order of most games as an Eagle. (Harold Carmichael will lead off the list.)
Thursday, December 31, 2020
Sunday, November 15, 2020
Jack Concannon played for Boston College, and was the #1 overall pick in the 1964 AFL draft by the Boston Patriots. He was also the Eagles' #2 draft pick in the 1964 NFL draft. He chose to sign with the Eagles.
Jack played sparingly in his 3 seasons with Philadelphia. He only played in 7 games (1 start) in his first 2 seasons. In 1966 he played in 11 games, but only had 2 starts. Not a very good showing for such a high draft pick, when your only competition is the under-achieving Norm Snead and journeyman backup King Hill. (Although Hill was also a first-overall draft pick - for the Cardinals in 1958.)
Just before the 1967 season, the Bears' owner/head coach George Halas was looking to unload tight end Mike Ditka, who had become a thorn in his side. Ditka was dealt to the Eagles, who offered the Bears their pick of any of their 3 quarterbacks. The Bears chose third-stringer Concannon over the other two n'er-do-wells.
Concannon played for the Bears for 5 seasons, starting most of the games in '67 and '70, and a handful in '68 and '69. A broken collarbone curtailed his 1968 season, and he lost the starting job to Bobby Douglass in 1969.
He started the first 3 games in 1971 then suffered a knee injury, which ended his stint as the Bears' starting QB.
Jack spent the 1972 and 1973 seasons on the Cowboys' taxi squad, then made 2 starts for the Packers in 1974 as their 3rd-string QB behind John Hadl and Jerry Tagge.
In late-October 1975, the Lions lost both Greg Landry and Bill Munson in the same game. The Lions signed Concannon to back up 3rd-string QB Joe Reed for the remainder of the season. He played in 7 games (no starts).
Concannon passed away in 2005 at age 62.
Concannon only had one card as an Eagle (1965), but his 1968 card shows him in an Eagles' jersey.
Wednesday, October 7, 2020
Cyril Pinder was the Eagles' 2nd-round pick in the 1968 draft. He played in every game in his 3 seasons with the Birds (1968-70), starting 5, 4, and 8 games as he alternated with halfbacks Izzy Lang ('68) and Leroy Keyes ('69), and fullback Tom Woodeshick ('70).
In 1970 he led the Eagles in rushing with 657 yards, but was traded to the Bears for 2 draft picks during training camp in 1971 because of contract squabbles. The Bears needed some insurance against Gale Sayers' ailing knees. (Ironically, the Eagles replaced him with Ronnie Bull, acquired from the Bears in the same off-season.)
Pinder played for the Bears for 2 seasons (starting 10 games), then was released in mid-September 1973. Weeks later the Cowboys picked him up and he provided backfield depth through the end of the season.
Cyril joined the WFL's Chicago team in 1974 and rushed for 925 yards. He was on the team in 1975, until it folded after 5 games.
Thursday, July 2, 2020
He was the Bears' #1 pick in the 1961 draft, and played his first 6 seasons with Chicago, starting every game. He made the Pro Bowl in his first 5 seasons, and was Rookie of the Year in 1961. Frequent clashes with owner/head coach George Halas got him traded to the Eagles before the 1967 season for quarterback Jack Concannon.
In 1967 Ditka played 9 games (starting 6), but missed the last 5 weeks of the season while injured. In 1968 he played in 11 games, but only started 6. He was injured for a time, but was also suspended in November for criticizing his coach.
After the 1968 season he was traded to the Cowboys for a bag of beans. For 2 seasons, he played behind 6-year starter Pettis Norman, then behind Billy Truax in 1971.
Ditka started every game during the 1972 season, his last before retiring. He played in 9 post-season games with the Cowboys, including 2 Super Bowls.
Mike was an assistant coach for the Cowboys from 1973-81, the Bears' head coach from 1982-92, and the Saints' head coach from 1997-99.
Ditka was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1988, the first tight end to be so honored.