National Chicle: Defensive Line

Continuing with the Custom National Chicle style set I’ve been running, here are some notable defensive linemen. In this group, I have included two-way players Lavie Dilweg and Larry Craig, who were both especially noted for their work on the defensive edge. Dilweg also played end on offense, while Craig was a blocking back for the Packer attack.

Most of these cards use backgrounds from the 1934-36 Diamond Stars baseball card set, also put out by National Chicle. The one exception is Dilweg who uses the Marquette background from Swede Johnston’s actual National Chicle football card.

ncldilweg  nclcraig

ncdhanner  nchjordan2






All custom cards except for White and Daniels are colorized.

Packers by the Numbers Update: #43

End Dutch Webber initiated 43 for the Packers in 1928. In the Lambeau era, he was followed by ends Les Peterson (1934) and Don Wells (1946-49), back Herdis McCrary (1932) and linemen George Svendsen (1935-37) and Buckets Goldenberg (1938-45).

In the modern era 43 has been worn by two ends, nine defensive backs and five runners:

E: Ab Wimberly (1950), Aundra Thompson (1977-78).

DB: Ace Loomis (1952), Doug Hart (1964-71), Dave Mason (1974), Henry Monroe (1979), Daryl Jones (1984-85), Scott McGarrahan (1998-00), Todd Franz (2005), Patrick Dendy (2006) and M.D. Jennings (2011-13).

RB: Don Barton (1953), J.R. Boone (1953), Larry Morris (1987r), Randy Kinder (1997) and Moe Smith (2002).

The number was not worn at all from 1954-63, 1980-83, 1988-96 and 2007-10. Buckets Goldenberg and Doug Hart worn it the longest, eight years a piece. They and George Svendsen are the best players to wear it and the two linemen are members of the team’s Hall of Fame.

1928dwebber  1936gsvendsen1940bgoldenberg  1949ldwells

1971dhart3  1985tdjones


All custom cards aside from Hart and McGarrahan are colorized.

A Card for Everyone: Kevin Hardy

Kevin Hardy was an amazing physical specimen. 6’5” and 280 pounds with speed and agility, he was a multisport star at Notre Dame. As a sophomore in 1964-65, Hardy became the first Fighting Irish athlete in 19 years to letter in baseball, basketball and football, and I don’t think it’s been done since. He was .300 hitting left fielder in baseball, the starting center in basketball and part of Notre Dame’s powerful defensive line with Alan Page, Pete Duranko and Tom Rhoads.

Duranko had a solid pro career as a defensive end with the Broncos, and Page was a Hall of Fame tackle with the Vikings and Bears. Hardy was selected highest of all, seventh overall in the 1968 NFL draft by the Saints. Kevin never got to report to New Orleans, though, because he was awarded to San Francisco by Commissioner Pete Rozelle as compensation (along with another first round pick) for the Saints signing 49er receiver Dave Parks who had played out his option.

Hardy played for San Francisco in 1968, but tore up his knee in the 1969 preseason and missed the season. He had previously missed one season at Notre Dame due to a back injury. Green Bay traded a second round pick to obtain Kevin in 1970, and he appeared in all 14 games that year, starting one.

Meanwhile, Harland Svare took over as the head coach and GM in San Diego and unsuccessfully tried to emulate George Allen by trading draft choices for proven talent. He gave the Packers a first round pick for the disappointing Hardy. Kevin lasted two years with the Chargers, appearing in 19 games and starting 10. Green Bay used the first round pick they acquired for Hardy on Jerry Tagge, another disappointment.

Saturday is Hardy’s 73rd birthday, and here’s a card for the one-time Packer.


Custom card is colorized.

Packers by the Numbers Update: #42

Curly Lambeau himself was the first man to wear 42 in Green Bay. In his time he was followed by backs Harry O’Boyle (1932), Bob Monnett (1934), Andy Uram (1939-43), Paul Duhart (1944), Bruce Smith (1945-48) and Ken Kranz (1949), as well as linemen Dustin McDonald (1935) and Roy Schoemann (1938).

In the modern era, the number has been worn by four defensive backs and ten runners:

DB: Wally Dreyer (1950), Corey Dowden (1996), Darren Sharper (1997-2004) and Morgan Burnett (2010-17).

RB: Al Cannava (1950), Al Carmichael (1953-54), Don McIlhenny (1957-59), John Brockington (1971-77), Walt Landers (1978-79), Gary Ellerson (1985-86), Walter Dean (1991), Harry Sydney (1992), Leshon Johnson (1994-95) and DeShawn Wynn (2007-09).

There were significant gaps in the use of 42 from 1960-70, 1980-84 and 1987-90.

Lambeau, of course is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Monnett, Uram, Carmichael and Brockington are all members of the team’s Hall of Fame. Burnett and the embarrassing Sharper wore 42 for the longest, eight years. They and Brockington were also the best players to wear it.

1928clambeau  1935dmcdonald

1940auram  1945bsmith

1954bacarmichael  1957tdmcilhenny

1971tjbrockington  1986tgellerson

1992hsydney  1996cdowden

All custom cards aside from Brockington, Sydney and Dowden are colorized.

National Chicle: Coaches and Front Office

Running thin on actual National Chicle backgrounds, I have branched out. For this group of coaches and front office people, Lombardi, Holmgren and McCarthy front actual NC backgrounds (Vince aptly uses the one for Knute Rockne). Bengtson, Shurmur and Thompson use paintings by Belgian surrealist Rene Magritte and the other three use backgrounds from Goudey baseball cards from the time.

ncvlombardi  ncmholmgren


ncpbengtson magritte son of man  ncfshurmur magritte time transfixednctthompson magritte happy donor

ncjvainisi  ncppeppler


Lombardi, Peppler and Vainisi custom cards are colorized.

Packers by the Numbers Update: #41

No Packer has really made 41 his own. The longest anyone has worn the number in Green Bay is three years by safety Tom Flynn, although Hall of Famers Arnie Herber and Clarke Hinkle briefly wore it, as did Packer Hall of Fame member Joe Laws.

The number was first donned by back Harry O’Boyle in 1928 and he was followed in the Lambeau era by backs Dave Zuidmulder (1931), Herber 1932-33, Laws (1934), Hinkle (1936) and Ralph Earhart (1948-49) and by tackles Champ Seibold (1937-38 and Paul Kell (1939-40).

In the modern era, 41 has been worn by four runners, 12 defensive backs and two ends:

RB: Bill Robinson (1952), Junior Coffey (1966), Dave Osborn (1976) and Torrance Marshall (2002).

DB: Marvin Johnson (1952-53), Lou Mihajlovich (1954), Doyle Nix (1955), Bobby Freeman (1959), Jim Burrow (1976), Tom Flynn (1984-86), Kenneth Johnson (1987), Chuck Compton (1987r), Eugene Robinson (1996-97), Jerron Wishom (2005), Frank Walker (2007) and Lenzy Pipkins (2017).

E: Paul Gibson (1972) and Spencer Havner (2009-10).

There have been six stretches of at least five years when no Packer wore 41: 1941-47, 1960-64, 1966-71, 1977-83, 1988-95 and 2011-16.

1928hoboyle  1936chinkle2

1937ycseibold  1949lrearhart

1952bbrobinson  1953bmjohnson

1955bdnix  1985ttflynn

1996erobinson  2010shavner

First seven custom cards are colorized.

In the Style of National Chicle

Having used up all 36 backgrounds of the real National Chicle cards, I decided to get a bit creative and paired colorized images of Lambeau era linemen with the period industrial-style paintings of artists Charles Sheeler and Charles DeMuth, both of whom are often referred to as realists or precisionists.

Bill Lee, Baby Ray, Charlie Brock, Cal Hubbard, Lon Evans and Whitey Woodin appear in front of Sheelers while Buckets Goldenberg and Cub Buck front Demuths. Mike Michalske’s background is an art deco illustration.

ncblee csheeler 5   ncbray csheeler mills  nccbrock csheeler 6

ncchubbard csheeler stacks

nclevans csheeler townscape

ncwwoodin csheeler 7

ncbgoldenberg demuth2

nccbuck demuth3

ncmmichalske artdecotrain

All custom cards colorized.

Billy Butler’s Birthday

One of the 1959 Packers of Lombardi turns 81 today, halfback/return man Billy Butler. Butler hailed from Berlin, Wisconsin and attended the University of Tennessee Chattanooga. The 5’10” 185-pound local hero was selected by Green Bay in the 19th round of the 1959 NFL draft.

According to the David Maraniss biography of Lombardi, when the slightly-built Butler went to check in to training camp, Vince barked at him, “What the Hell are you doing here? This line isn’t for kids.” Butler was cut from the team on August 29, but was re-signed a month later on September 30 after Lombardi cut rookie running back Timmy Brown due to his fumbling.

Bill appeared in the 11 remaining games of the season on both offense and defense, but his biggest highlight was returning a punt 61 yards for a touchdown in the 28-17 loss to the Bears on November 8.

Butler was lost to Dallas in the 1960 expansion draft and thus became one of three players (with Nate Borden and Don McIlhenny) to play for both Lombardi and Tom Landry in their first seasons as head coaches. Butler played one year in Dallas, one in Pittsburgh and three in Minnesota before finishing his playing career with Saskatchewan in the CFL in 1965.

He returned to Wisconsin after retiring and had coached high school football until he turned 73 in 2010. Four years after that, he made some local news by donating his 1959 Packers’ team blazer as well as his uniform from the Packer basketball team to the Packer Hall of Fame.

When interviewed by Maraniss in the 1990s, Butler said, “Lombardi was the biggest asshole I ever met in my life.” However, when the Green Bay Press Gazette spoke to him about the coach in 2014 because of his donation to the team’s Hall, he was much more circumspect with a measured response, saying, “I don’t badmouth him, don’t praise him. I really appreciate what he did, and he really made it a strong organization.”

1959tbbutler4  1960tbbutler

Custom cards in Topps styles.