In 1947, Curly Lambeau finally acquired a quarterback and instituted the T formation in Green Bay. During the War, half the league followed the Bears example and converted to the T: Philadelphia in 1941, Washington in 1944, and the Cardinals and Rams in 1945. In 1947, the Packers were joined by the Lions and Boston Yanks in switching. A year later, the Giants would join the majority, but the Steelers hold out with the Single Wing until 1952.
The man Lambeau obtained to usher in the new era was Jack Jacobs who had previously played for the Cleveland Rams and the Redskins. Curly sent halfback Bob Nussbaumer to Washington for Jacobs. Jack was no Luckman or Baugh, but had his finest year for Green Bay in 1947, throwing for 16 touchdowns and 17 interceptions.
On this day, the 2-1 Redskins travelled to Milwaukee to face the 2-1 Packers. Washington received the kickoff and lined up with Baugh in the T, while Green Bay set up in a 5-3 defense. After a punt, Jacobs led the Packer offense onto the field against his old mates. Sometimes the Packers would line one halfback wide as a flanker, sometimes as a wingback or H back and sometimes in a fullhouse backfield. On the second play, the Packers demonstrated Lambeau’s main twist to the T: Jacobs lined up behind center, but the snap went deep to halfback Bruce Smith instead.
On film, it appears that Jacobs is standing a bit off kilter, and Brock centers the ball next to his leg, but it’s hard to tell. In Boston, Coach Herb Kopf was running what he called the “Q-T formation” in which the snap would sometimes go between the quarterback’s legs directly to a halfback, so that could be what Green Bay was doing.
At any rate, Jacobs’ passes to ends Luhn and Goodnight drove the team right down the field, and Ted Fritsch punched in the TD from the two. Ward Cuff added the extra point. Following more sharp passing by Jacobs later in the quarter, Cuff converted a 14-yard field goal to extend the first quarter score to 10-0 Packers. A 50-yard interception return by Washington’s Dick Todd led to a six-yard Baugh TD pass to John Lookabaugh in the second quarter to bring the halftime score to 10-7.
In the third quarter, the Redskins evened the game on a Dick Poillon 18-yard field goal after a fumble by Packer fullback Walt Schlinkman. However, a roughing the punter penalty against the Redskins at the end of the quarter extended a Green Bay drive, and the Packers retook the lead 17-10 on the second play of the fourth quarter on a 26-yard halfback option pass from Tony Canadeo to Nolan Luhn.
The last stanza was all Packers. Ted Fritsch booted 49-yard field goal – most likely the longest of his career to extend the lead to 20-10. On the ensuing Redskin drive, defensive end Don Wells grabbed Baugh who flipped an ill-advised pass into the flat that linebacker Bob Forte picked off and ran back 68 yards for the closing touchdown of the 27-10 Packer victory.
Jacobs ended up completing 12 of 23 passes, while Baugh connected on 19 of 39. Green Bay would go on to post a 6-5-1 record and finish third in the West for the season; Washington sank to fourth in the East with a 4-8 tally. A year later, the bottom would fall out for the Packers, Lambeau and Jacobs, who would drop to five TD passes and 21 interceptions in 1948.
Custom cards all colorized.