season since joining the club. But there was not enough of the Forester type to stop such runners as John Henry Johnson of the Lions, Jon Arnett of the Rams, Rick Casares of the Bears or Lenny Moore of the Colts. The offensive line, after a sputtering start, came around during the second half of the campaign. Yet, there is reason to believe there are better games in linemen like Ollie Spencer, Norm Masters, Jim Salsbury and Al Barry. Center Jim Ringo deserved an all-pro vote. Billy Howton established himself seasons ago - they come no better. But Max McGee seemed to have lost some of his stuff after a service hitch. McGee wasn't a Gary Knafelc, not this season. One statistic probably pinpoints the Packers' second half failure better than any. Green Bay scored exactly seven points in all games during the third quarter.
RUNNERS AND LINE MAJOR PACKER NEEDS
DEC 17 (Milwaukee Journal) - For the Green Bay Packers, this was the season of breaks - on plays and to players. Almost all breaks, or so it seemed, went against the Packers. There were broken legs for Joe Skibinski, Sam Palumbo and Ron Kramer and a broken arm for Nate Borden. There were torn knees for Gary Knafelc and Tom Bettis and for Mike Hudock, who was put out for the season before he ever reported. The Miami (Fla.) rookie was hurt in the college all-star game. There are not to mention the usual injuries which laid up regulars for from one to four weeks - ankles for Paul Hornung and Bill Kinard and knees for Norm Masters and Norm Amundsen. And there were breaks on the field - blocked punts (twice), failures to make a touchdown from the one yard line in four plays (twice) and fumbles and interceptions which always seemed to go the wrong way at the wrong time. So Green Bay finished last in the Western Division of the NFL with three victories and nine defeats. The only thing, then, is look ahead to next season. Most players will be back with the probably exception of rookie slotback Ron Kramer and veteran place kicking fullback Fred Cone. Kramer, when his broken leg mends, will become property of the Air Force, perhaps for three years. He will be difficult to replace. Cone probably will retire to coach in a Mobile (Ala.) prep school. He tried to retire to the same job two years ago and was lured back. He has been money in the bank on field goals and extra points. Others have mumbled around retiring, but in their case the long and losing season has influenced them. Next July they will feel differently. What does Green Bay need to become a winner? It needs runners, badly, and it needs a better line to clear the way. At season's end, Don McIlhenny was carrying the ball carrying load alone. A pro team nowadays needs at least four good runners - to keep fresh pressure on and to allow for inevitable injuries. Paul Hornung might be another topnotch running back, but Coach Lisle Blackbourn sees the boy at quarterback. "I'm sure he'll throw well enough if he works at it seriously," Blackbourn said, "and with the way he can run, Paul will be a fine quarterback." The Packers have one quarterback on his way to greatness already - Bart Starr. The young Alabaman gained stature in a losing season after playing strictly in Tobin Rote's shadow in his rookie year. Starr still needs more confidence in his own ability. He could be more of a "take charge" guy. That will come, for he is intelligent and talented. Blackbourn says that Starr "has the finest voice for calling signals I've ever heard in football." Green Bay's league leading total of 30 interceptions stands out. The Packer secondary is second to none in coverage. Its record was attained with little or no pressure on the passer. This phase will have to be improved next season. The Packers were extremely thin on defense at end and linebacker when the season ended. Carlton Massey, Texas cowboy, was found too light at defensive end. Blackbourn plans to give him a shot at slotback on offense. Massey has speed and smartness and was a fine pass catcher in college. Dan Currie, first draft choice from Michigan State, probably will be used at linebacker. Help for the offensive line must come from service returnees Forrest Gregg, Hank Bullough and Bob Skoronski (if Skoronski gets out in time for next season). Help could also come from Oliver Spencer and Jim Salsbury of this year's team, if they ever play up to potential, and from rookies Norm Masters and Carl Vereen, if they improve as expected. In the backfield, Doyle Nix and Veryl Switzer will be back from service. Nix is a proven defensive back and Switzer is a fine handyman. Both may add depth because of versatility. Certainly needed, too, though, is good luck with the draftees - Currie, Jim Taylor, Dick Christy, Ray Nitschke, Jerry Kramer - and those selected in previous years and now eligible and those still to be picked at Philadelphia in January.
BOGDA RESIGNS AS PACKER PRESIDENT
DEC 18 (Green Bay) - The resignation of Russell W. Bogda as president of the Green Bay Packers was announced at the meeting of Packer directors at the Beaumont Hotel Tuesday night. Bogda said he was giving up the position he has held since 1953 because of ill health. A special meeting of the directors has been called for next Monday noon to consider the resignation. Bogda has been a director and a member of the Packer executive committee since 1946, and succeeded Emil R. Fischer to the presidency when the latter became chairmen of the board. Packer directors last night voted for the appointment of a committee to study all of the facts involved in moving any additional league games to Green Bay. The committee will report back to the board shortly after the first of the year. Packer players, coaches, trainers and officer personnel were guests of the directors at the dinner. Each player was presented with an electric razor by the corporation. Player representatives Bill Howton, Dave Hanner and Fred Cone spoke, with Howton praising the manner in which the Packer corporation has handled relations with the players organization this season. He said that in his contacts with players from other teams in the league he could say that Green Bay has the best set-up in the league for dealing with player problems. Coach Lisle Blackbourn, in assessing the season just concluded, said that he thought there were a few bright spots to consider along with the bad. He felt the Packers are over the hump as far as the quarterbacking situation is concerned, with two veterans who have now had a full season’s baptism of fire, and that the same is true with the offensive line, which he pointed out has been reshuffled in each of his last four years. He also felt that the defensive secondary had been considerably improved this year in its pass defense. General Manager Verne C. Lewellen told the directors that preliminary figures indicate that the corporation will be in the black for the fourth consecutive year and will show a gross profit before taxes of about $50,000.
CONE, DILLON AND SYMANK WIN SECOND PLACE HONORS
DEC 18 (Green Bay) - Two old pros and a rookie came closest to winning major individual championship during the Packers’ 1957 season. Final National League statistics, released today, pointed a finger at veterans Fred Cone and Bobby Dillon, and that freshman fighter, Master John Symank. Those three posted second-place finishes – for the best spots among the Packer players who are blessed with the opportunity to get into the statistical columns. Cone posted 74 points and placed behind the 77s scored by Sam Baker of Washington and Lou Groza of Cleveland. Freddie, who was playing his seventh and final season, scored two touchdowns, 26 extra points and 12 field goals in 17 attempts. Cone made all of his extra point tries but “that last one (in San Francisco Sunday) just barely stayed inside the upright,” he explained later. Freddie now ranks as the Packers’ all-time toe and No. 2 scorer. He has scored 200 extra points and 53 field goals to better the 174 extra points by Don Hutson and the 36 field goals by Ted Fritsch who trained Cone in the art of field goaling when he reported back in 1951. Cone also scored 16 touchdowns and his grand point total is 455. Hutson, of course, leads with his fantastic 825 mark, while Fritsch now is third with 392. Dillon and Symank, the Bays’ deep secondarymen, each intercepted nine passes and placed behind Jack Christiansen of Detroit and Milt Davis of Baltimore, who tied for the top with 10 each. Jack Butler of Pittsburgh also tied with the Packer pair. Dillon, affectionately called “coach” by his teammates because he assisted the staff during the training season, points to Symank as his prize pupil. The heady and skilled Dillon is pretty much like a traffic cop back deep and John has done the rest with a good pair of hands and a real love for mixing it up. Al Carmichael placed third in punt returns for the next best finish, while Billy Howton was sixth in pass catches. Howton, who placed second with 55 catches a year ago, snared 38 this season. Don McIlhenny placed sixth in kickoff returns. Bart Starr, who carried the load at quarterback for the first time, came in ninth in passing, which is based on average gain per attempt. Babe Parilli was 11th and Bart’s quarterback mate of a year ago, Tobin Rote, came in 13th. The difference, though, is merely that Rote will be pitching next Sunday to put his team, Detroit, into the league championship game. Starr turned in an excellent passing percentage – 54.4 on 117 completions in 215 attempts. He had only 10 passes intercepted – most of them early in the season. Dick Deschaine actually wound up with a 42.0-yard punting average despite the fact that he had two boots blocked and two others were under 15 yards. He ranked sixth…HORNUNG’S RUN LONGEST: The Packers failed to place among the leaders in ground gaining, although Paul Hornung’s 72-yard run against the New York Giants here turned out to be the longest of the season. There is one regularly-scheduled league game left – Pittsburgh at Chicago Cardinals next Sunday. The ground gaining title was won by Jimmy Brown, the Cleveland Browns’ great rookie, who wheeled 942 yards on 202 attempts for a 4.7-yard average. He set the single game record during the season – 237 yards. Cleveland also has the passing champion – Tommy O’Connell, the former Illinois star who was released by the Chicago Bears before the Browns picked him up.
SWITZER, GREGG GET ALL-STAR GRID POSTS
DEC 18 (New York) - Two servicemen from the Green Bay Packers are included in an Armed Forces All-Star football team named Tuesday in a worldwide poll by the Armed Forces press, radio and TV service. Veryl Switzer of Bolling Air Force Base near Washington D.C. won the fullback honors. Forrest Gregg, who is stationed at Ft. Carson, Colo., was picked as one of the all-star guards. Both Switzer and Gregg are expected to play again with the Green Bay Packers after they finish their military service.
2 FAVORITES FOR PACKER PREXY
DEC 18 (Green Bay) - It was learned here Wednesday that Leslie Kelly and Dominic Olejniczak have the inside track in the scramble for the successor to Russ Bogda, Packer president who resigned because of ill health. The Board of Directors will meet Monday to accept Bogda's resignation and elect their new president. Olejniczak, former mayor of Green Bay, has been serving as vice president of the club. He and Kelly, president of the Green Bay Food Co., have been long time residents of Green Bay. Kelly was the only executive committee member to follow the team on its recent western trip. Bogda had been a director and a member of the executive committe since 1946, and succeeded Emil R. Fischer to the presidency when the latter became chairman of the board. Bogda has been confined to his home since mid-summer due to ill health. While electing a successor to Bogda is the first order of business, the board appointed a committee to study all of the facts involved in moving any additional league games to Green Bay. The Packers have been splitting their home card, playing three games in Green Bay and three in Milwaukee. But because of poor turnouts in Milwaukee compared to three sellouts in Green Bay last fall, there has been agitation to play four and possibly five league games in Green Bay next season. The Baltimore game was the biggest attraction at Milwaukee, drawing 26,322 customers. The 49er contest drew 18,919 and the Rams 19,540. Green Bay sold out all three of its games (Bears, Lions and Giants). The new Green Bay stadium has a seating capacity of 32,500. The Packers drew plenty of heat from the West Coast clubs for their Milwaukee "take", which amounted to a few dollars over the $20,000 guarantee. On the other hand, the Bays' big purse from California put the club in the black for the fourth straight year. Coach Liz Blackbourn, who has another year to go on his five-year contract, told the directors he thought the Packers were "over the hump" so far as the quarterback situation is concerned, with two veterans who now have had at least one full season under fire - apparently referring to Bart Starr and Babe Parilli. He said the same was true of the offensive line, which he pointed out had been reshuffled each of the last four years. He said he also felt the defensive secondary had been improved this year.
HOWTON, RINGO, DILLON TO WEST ALL-STAR TEAM
DEC 19 (Los Angeles) - Billy Howton and Jim Ringo of the Green Bay Packers Wednesday were named to the offensive team for the NFL's Western Division All-Star team which will meet the eastern squad in the eighth annual Pro Bowl contest January 12. Bobby Dillon of the Packers was named to the defensive unit. The contest will be played in the Memorial Coliseum.