Mind of Sabol: Linebackers

Chicago Bears, Featured, Indianapolis Colts, Mind of Sabol, New York Giants, Nick Calabrese, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Redskins

By Nick Calabrese

Editor’s Note: The Mind of Sabol series continues to look back at the game through the notes of late NFL Films President Steve Sabol.  In this fourth installment we take a look at some of the toughest men to play the game. Please let us know what you think about Mr. Sabol’s famous card catalog by leaving a comment below or tweeting @NFLFilms with #MindofSabol.

LinebackMind“Linebacker isn’t a position, it’s a state of mind.” – Steve Sabol


Mike Curtis

“Played with tremendous sincerity and passion
used his anger to convert his body into the instrument he needed to satisfy his ambitions
sense of frontier justice.” – Steve Sabol


“Who, by his own admission, was not always a nice man. ‘I have never looked upon a football field as a place to make friends.'”


Dick Butkus

Dick Butkus

“Dick Butkus – who became a legend at MLB by bending every bone he couldn’t break and dragging or knocking off a QB’s head and watching it roll down the field.” – Steve Sabol


“Ham was a quiet linebacker, one of the smartest men to play the position, but with great powers of anticipation and an almost unerring sense of doing the right thing.” – Steve Sabol

NFL Historical Imagery

Jack Ham

(click to enlarge)


“By nature, Sam Huff is a friendly sort with the widest smile in football. But he has no trouble working up a cold-eyes mean streak as game time approaches; by kickoff, he hates everyone on the other side of the scrimmage line.” – Steve Sabol

Sam Huff

Sam Huff


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