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View Poll Results: Which position group of today's players would most change the 1940s NFL?
Halfbacks and fullbacks 3 6.67%
Quarterbacks 2 4.44%
Wide receivers and tight ends 4 8.89%
Offensive linemen 14 31.11%
Kickers, punters, returners and kick coverage/return teams. 1 2.22%
Cornerbacks and safeties 0 0%
Linebackers (inside and outside) 0 0%
Defensive linement (ends and tackles) 16 35.56%
None of these would significantly change the game. It's a wash. 1 2.22%
Today's pansy players couldn't have even started in the 1940s. 4 8.89%
I don't know! On three! Hut! Hut! Hut! 0 0%
Voters: 45. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-11-2009, 08:49 PM  
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Which position group today would most dominate the 1940s?

We hear a lot how the players of the game today are more evolved than the players of yesteryear. So that begs the question: if you could transport NFL players of today back to the 1940s, which of the following position groups would MOST change the game?

Poll forthcoming.


Two rules:

1. Assume that they must follow the coaching strategies of the 1940s. (I pondered putting coaches as an option, but decided to keep the poll uncomplicated.)

2. Assume that they would not be two-way players, but would play their normal positions.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:51 PM   #2
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Just about all of them would.
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Matt once made a very nice play in Seattle where he spun away from a pass rusher and hit Bowe off his back foot for a first down.

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Old 01-11-2009, 08:53 PM   #3
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Which coaching philosphy would be used? 40's or current?
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:54 PM   #4
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Well, if you brought the QBs back in time, then they'd have this whacky big football they could barely handle. And they'd get whacked upside the head all the damn time.

WRs would get pulverized and turtle up. But still, that's alot of big, fast, strong athletes against guys who were alot slower back then, I'd imagine. (cough trying to avoid obvious racial stereotyping, but it ain't easy).

I'm thinking DL or OL, by a mile. They are MUCH bigger/stronger/faster than they were back then. Heck, John Hannah was a dominating offensive guard, and his playing weight -- in the late 70s and early 80s, was all of 265 pounds.

I can't imagine what it was in the 40s, but I'd imagine that the current guys would have their way with the guys on the other side of the ball. I'll stick with that answer.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kstater View Post
Which coaching philosphy would be used? 40's or current?
Good question. I was thinking it was a group of guys from today that stepped back into time, so 40s rules, coaching, strategy, etc.

Just plug in one group of modern players on the field.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amnorix View Post
Good question. I was thinking it was a group of guys from today that stepped back into time, so 40s rules, coaching, strategy, etc.

Just plug in one group of modern players on the field.
Then QB's and WR would be mostly irrelevant. I'd say RB.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amnorix View Post
I'm thinking DL or OL, by a mile. They are MUCH bigger/stronger/faster than they were back then. Heck, John Hannah was a dominating offensive guard, and his playing weight -- in the late 70s and early 80s, was all of 265 pounds.

Yea, probably this.

Heck, i remember when the Fridge was considered gargantuan back in 85.

I see those old films now and think he looks slender by todays standards.
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Originally Posted by Cassel's Reckoning:

Matt once made a very nice play in Seattle where he spun away from a pass rusher and hit Bowe off his back foot for a first down.

One of the best plays Matt has ever made.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kstater View Post
Which coaching philosphy would be used? 40's or current?
I was clarifying even as you were typing. See the original post.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:01 PM   #9
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Its tough to compare because baseball not football was top sport back then.
That lasted until prob the 60's.
As a kid growing up a long time ago I can tell you the best athletes in the old days played baseball if they could.
That being said I think it's lineman in general.
Back in the day 6'5 300 lb athletic players were rare.
In today's NFL it's almost a requirement for a lineman.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:04 PM   #10
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Today's DEs and DTs would have have killed even Jim Brown's career.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:07 PM   #11
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either the d-line or o-line. a close third would be RB/FBs methinks.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:09 PM   #12
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Of course Jim Brown didn't play in the 1940s.

Marion Motley.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rain Man View Post
We hear a lot how the players of the game today are more evolved than the players of yesteryear. So that begs the question: if you could transport NFL players of today back to the 1940s, which of the following position groups would MOST change the game?

Poll forthcoming.


Two rules:

1. Assume that they must follow the coaching strategies of the 1940s. (I pondered putting coaches as an option, but decided to keep the poll uncomplicated.)

2. Assume that they would not be two-way players, but would play their normal positions.
Since you failed to say, they would have to "block" the same way as they had to in the 40's , I would definitely have to vote for the lineman.
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:16 PM   #14
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Here's my thinking:

QBs - Likely more arm strength, and when they call their own plays you'd imagine that they'd inject a lot more passes into the mix. A big difference with QBs today, though, is the sophisticated timing-based systems that they work with, which probably wouldn't work well in the bump and run era. My initial thought is that they'd make a huge difference, but I'm not sure. They'd either turn the 40s onto its ear, or they wouldn't make much difference at all because the coaches would throttle them back. I think with the defenses of the day, the only difference-maker would be arm strength, which probably isn't that much of a difference.

RBs - Certainly bigger, stronger, and faster, but I'm not sure they'd be dominant against the smaller defenses of the 1940s. Those guys would likely change directions faster than today's behemoths.

WRs and TEs - This is a group that intrigues me. Look at Don Hutson in the 30s. Now inject Randy Moss and Fitzgerald and Bowe and heaven forbid, Tony Gonzalez into that mix. These guys would terrorize the CBs of the 1940s, even with bump and run in place. In fact, Tony might thrive even more in that era. I think these guys would change coaches' strategies real quick.

OL - Back then, OL were much more restricted than they are now. Our modern linemen would be bigger and faster than most of the defense, but they're also built to take on 300-lb. linemen. If they were matched up consistently against guys the size of blitzing safeties and linebackers, would they have the speed? But maybe it wouldn't matter, because their teams would never pass. They'd just bull forward play after play. These guys would dominate.

K and P - My initial reaction is to discount these guys, but consider the kickers in an era where scores over 20 were rare. A kicker who could put up a 50-yard field goal would be a powerful weapon. Kickoffs and punts would pin the other guys back, and then the game would be won with field goals. I think Ks and Ps would significantly change the balance of power.

DBs - We'd probably be talking more about run support with these guys. I figure they'd completely shut down the passing games of the 1940s, and would then move up and start shutting down the run. Relatively large impact, because they'd change the game.

LBs - These guys would seriously mess with the 1940s. They'd be instrumental in shutting down the run, and would help against the pass. However, the pass was more of a long-pass kind of deal back then, so while their range would make a difference and they'd kill some receivers, I don't know if they'd disrupt the passing game as much.

DL - The 1940s was a running man's game, and lordy. These guys would blow up the run against 230/240-lb. lineman. The 1940s couldn't run up the middle and would have trouble passing, so their only hope would be to run wide on the modern d-linemen. I think the DL would have to be the biggest difference maker.

In summary, I think I'd go with:

1. Defensive linemen
2. Defensive backs
3. Kickers and punters
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:25 PM   #15
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considering that all OL weight 300+lbs & can move when in the 1940's the heaviest was probably 230lbs....I'd say the OL.
Check out this article:

The rosters of the N.F.L.'s All-Decade teams from the 1920's through the 1980's neatly document the increase in the size of the league's best players through the years. When it comes to the league's first 30 years, the most important thing to keep in mind is that football was virtually an endurance sport. Substitutions were limited; many players were on the field for an entire game, playing both offense and defense. It was the era of the tough and durable ''60-minute man,'' when helmets were optional and stamina was as important as strength and speed. Not surprisingly, the linemen of that time were lightweights by today's standards.

On the 1920's and 30's All-Decade squads, they averaged just 227 pounds, while the average for the 40's squad crept up to 229. Among the stars of those years were the 195-pound guard Heartley (Hunk) Andersen, who played in the 1920's for the Chicago Bears, and Mel Hein, a 225-pound Hall of Fame center who played for the Giants from 1931 to 1945. The game was transformed in 1950, when unlimited free substitution was permanently established in the N.F.L. This led to the two-platoon system, which led in turn to a bigger offensive linemen. (They averaged 249 pounds on the 1950's All-Decade team.) The swelling along the line of scrimmage continued steadily, with the average weight of the All-Decade offensive linemen climbing from 258 in the 1960's to 262 in the 70's to 270 in the 80's. A few N.F.L. players hit the 300 mark in the first half of the 80's, most notably William (Refrigerator) Perry, the defensive tackle for the Chicago Bears who enjoyed an additional 15 minutes of fame as an unlikely running back.

But the elephant stampede really began in the early 1990's. The Dallas Cowboys, taking maximum advantage of the liberalized blocking rules, started winning Super Bowls behind the biggest offensive line ever, anchored by Nate Newton, a 6-foot-3, 320-pound, one-man ZIP code. In no time at all, N.F.L. and college coaches were copying the Cowboys. By 1996, the average weight of the starting offensive linemen in the Pro Bowl had reached 299.

Last edited by KChiefs1; 01-11-2009 at 09:34 PM.. Reason: added information
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