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Packers’ Lombardi-era kicker dies

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Don Chandler, who kicked the field goals and extra points for the Super Bowl-winning Packers teams of the Vince Lombardi era, has died.  He was 76.

You can’t win if you don’t have a kicker,” former Packers quarterback Zeke Bratkowski told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.  “It wasn’t called ‘throw the ball’ or ‘run the ball.’  It was called ‘football.’  He worked at it.  It wasn’t easy.  Green Bay is cold.  But he made so many clutch kicks.”

Chandler, who was inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame in 1975, also holds the franchise record with a 90-yard punt.

In 1965, the last season before the Super Bowl era, Chandler propelled the Packers to a 13-10 overtime playoff win against the Colts with a 25-yard field goal in overtime and a 22-yarder late in the fourth quarter that still irks old-school Colts fans.  The ball looked to be wide, and Chandler reacted as if he missed it.

“As far as I know it was good,” Bratkowski said.  “I still contend that you can’t judge from way back. You need to be underneath the goal post . . . I know I have a ring that says it was good.”

Chandler’s kicking would also play a role in the next two seasons, which generated not just NFL championship rings but Super Bowl rings.

We extend our condolences to Chandler’s family, friends, and teammates.

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13 Responses to “Packers’ Lombardi-era kicker dies”
  1. lbpackfan says: Aug 12, 2011 8:38 AM

    Ice Bowl…Super Bowls…1965 Playoff game vs Colts which ultimately led to the raising of the uprights…lots of memories for Don. You’ll be missed! Thanks for being great.

    RIP, Don.

  2. wingt74 says: Aug 12, 2011 8:45 AM

    RIP Mr. Chandler

  3. 4ever19 says: Aug 12, 2011 8:46 AM

    Condolences to Mr. Chandler’s family but as a Colts fan who remembers that kick, it still hasn’t gone through the uprights.

  4. chopblocked says: Aug 12, 2011 8:59 AM

    He was money! Phil Bengston (Lombardi’s successor) claimed that if Chandler had not retired, the Pack would have won several close games and made the playoffs in 1968

    All you need to know about how good he was is the fact that it took the Packers FOUR YEARS (and God knows how many kickers) to find his replacement. Of course that was the Polish legend Chester Marcol.

  5. buzmeg says: Aug 12, 2011 9:10 AM

    Don’t forget Chandler was the punter for the NY Giants before going to GB. He perfected and was prolific with the “coffin-corner” punt.

  6. hobartbaker says: Aug 12, 2011 10:46 AM

    Chandler was strolling through the Pearly Gates when suddenly St. Peter called him back. “Oh, Don, you remember that 22 yarder back in ’65?”.

  7. rayjayjohnsonjr says: Aug 12, 2011 11:36 AM

    Thanks for all the great memories, Don, and may you RIP.

  8. glac1 says: Aug 12, 2011 11:45 AM

    Another truly Packer great. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family. Fitting that he would pass away on the 92nd anniversary of the founding of the Green Bay Packers Inc….

  9. sterling7 says: Aug 12, 2011 11:58 AM

    A part of me goes with you Don. Rest in peace and I’ll see you later……………..P.S. just between you and me, we both know you were wide, but I still love you!!

  10. bluestree says: Aug 12, 2011 12:55 PM

    No doubt, Phil Bengston really blew it in ’68 when he failed to replace Don Chandler. Scuttlebutt was they thought Jerry Kramer could kick a few while they talked Don into coming back. No question missed (and very makeable) field goals foiled a Packer four-peat.

  11. minnysoda says: Aug 12, 2011 1:18 PM

    Don strolled right down the middle of the road through the Pearly gates. Many of your family and teammates were there to slap you on the back for your victory in the game of life.

    However hobartbaker I’m sure your walk through other gates will be staggered as your feet blister.

  12. bobnelsonjr says: Aug 12, 2011 4:13 PM

    As a side note many would not remember many of the great players if Mr Sabol had not been filming games.

    It is good that players like Chandler and some of those great Packers teams were filmed.

    You only wish that NFL films had begun in the 1940′s.

    Additionally, I would like to remind people that Vince Lombardi was not only the greatest coach but he was also a great General Manager getting players like Chandler.

    Don Chandler will always be remembered in Titletown.

  13. paulharghis says: Aug 12, 2011 11:20 PM

    I’ve never seen a more pathetic display of posting in my life. You Packer fans really need to get out more.

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