Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now



Jack Tatum: Fine Line Between Being Aggressive and Dirty 12

Posted on July 30, 2010 by Dean Hybl

Jack Tatum fit perfectly into the rebellious reputation of the Oakland Raiders of the 1970s.

In many ways, former NFL safety Jack Tatum, who died earlier this week, perfectly epitomized the hard-hitting NFL of the 1970s and the renegade reputation of the Oakland Raiders of that era. Known as “The Assassin”, Tatum played hard and made no apologies for his style or the repercussions.

Sadly, he is probably best known for his hit on New England Patriots receiver Darryl Stingley that left the wideout paralyzed for the remainder of his life. The hit, which occurred in a preseason game, was a legal hit, but many thought that Tatum played with a dangerous recklessness that was beyond the normal violence associated with the NFL.

Tatum fed off his reputation, a fact that some think is one reason he has received little consideration for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

His biography was called “They Call Me Assassin” and in the book he wrote that “I like to believe that my best hits border on felonious assault.”

Tatum and Stingley never reconciled, though in his 1980 autobiography Tatum wrote, “When the reality of Stingley’s injury hit me with its full impact, I was shattered. To think that my tackle broke another man’s neck and killed his future.”

In recent years Tatum endured physical hardship of his own. He suffered from diabetes and had a leg amputated. He died from a heart attack. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Drew Pearson: Mr. Clutch
      August 7, 2021 | 6:59 pm

      Drew Pearson

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is a former NFL wide receiver know as “Mr. Clutch” for his penchant for making big receptions at crucial moments of the game. After waiting for more than 30 years, he is finally earning his rightful place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a member of the 2021 Hall of Fame Class.

      During his decade with the Dallas Cowboys, Drew Pearson had a habit of making the big catch at the right moment to help the Cowboys time and again snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

      The favorite target of Hall of Fame quarterback Roger Staubach, Pearson was widely recognized as one of the great receivers of his era. Though at the time of his retirement many expected Pearson to easily breeze into the Hall of Fame, his enshrinement was derailed by changes to the game which artificially inflated receiver stats and made the numbers he produced during a time when wide receivers weren’t catching 100 passes a season seem inferior.

      Read more »

    • RSSArchive for Vintage Athlete of the Month »
  • Follow Us Online

  • Check out the best free bets at freebets4all. Learn how to convert online bookmakers free bets into guaranteed cash using the matched betting technique.

  • Current Poll

    Who Should Win the American League MVP Award?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...
  • Post Categories



↑ Top