SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Hall of Fame defensive end David “Deacon” Jones, who led the Los Angeles Rams’ Fearsome Foursome in the 1960s, has died at age 74.
“It’s a sad day for football,” John Madden told the KCBS Radio morning crew. “Believe me, he was something special. He was the glue that held a lot of things together.”
John knew him not only as an opposing player, but also as a ‘teammate’ in the old Miller Lite commercials, and in Hall of Fame activities.
“I was thinking this morning ‘who is going to replace Deacon?’ And there’s no one… I’ll tell you honestly what Deacon did as a leader, as a guy that brought everyone together and held everyone together, he’s irreplaceable.”
Jones was an African-American who grew up in the 40s in segregated Florida.
“Deacon never forgot that,” Madden said. “(He) took that battle all the way through his life, and not only for his own, but for others. And I think that’s what drove him. I think that’s what made him not only excellent on the field, but the leader he was. I mean, Deacon got people to follow him… When he talked, everyone listened.”
In other news, the Pac-12 hopes to cut down on the number of concussions and other injuries by limiting the number of hits in practice starting this season. The conference is working out the details on how to monitor contact.
“Players, either in their helmets or in their helmets and shoulder pads, wear meters,” John said. “Then you can tell not only how many hits they had, but you can tell the impact. I mean, how big the impact was of the hits… That’s something that’s coming, and it’s going to come in all football. In the NFL we’ve been looking at it, and trying to figure out what we could do with it and how we could use it. And it sounds like the colleges are getting there first.” (8:15)