Lombardi’s Taxi Squad 1966

All five of the 1965 inactives returned to Green Bay for training camp in 1966, but only Allen Brown made the team. Larry Moore became the first Lombardi Packer to serve a second season on the team’s taxi squad and was joined by two undrafted free agents – quarterback Kent Nix and flanker Sonny Redders – as well as two future draft picks from 1965 – 13th rounder Roy Schmidt, a guard, and 18th round end Jeff White.

Nix is the best remembered of the 1966 taxi squad. Former Packers’ assistant coach Bill Austin would give Lombardi a fifth round pick for Kent in 1967, and Nix became the Steelers starting quarterback when Bill Nelsen got hurt that year. Kent spent three seasons in Pittsburgh, two in Chicago and one in Houston, mostly as a backup, and then hung on the taxi squads of Houston and New Orleans for a couple more years. Roy Schmidt was from Long Beach State and essentially took Eli Strand’s place as the extra lineman on the taxi squad for 1966. Schmidt would later have a five year NFL career with the Siants, Falcons, Redskins and Vikings.

Jeff White played with end Dave Parks and halfback Donny Anderson at Texas Tech and was a future pick in the 18th round of the 1965 draft, when Anderson was a future pick in the first round. White had been a junior college All America at Glendale, California. Sonny Redders starred at Wisconsin Stevens Point as an all-conference running back. Redders hailed from Madison and played local semipro ball after college before winning a tryout with Green Bay in 1966. The Packers converted him to flanker. Neither of these two receivers ever played in the NFL.

Larry Moore was signed as a free agent halfback out of Central Michigan in 1965. As the lightest man in camp at 177 pounds, he was trying out primarily as a kicker. He stayed on the taxi squad in both 1965 and 1966 as insurance should anything happen to place kicker Don Chandler. Moore was actually traded to Atlanta on August 16, 1966 for an undisclosed draft pick. He had a three week competition with Bob Jencks to be the Flacons first kicker. Jencks won, and Moore was cut on September 6. Lombardi then re-signed him to the taxi squad.

1966plmoore  1966tknix3  1966prschmidt2

1966pjwhite2  1966psredders2

1966 Philadelphia Custom cards; all but White are colorized.

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