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NFL will present Deacon Jones Award to sacks leader

Deacon Jones pumps fist Getty Images

The man who created the sack will be remembered with an award in his name to the NFL’s sack leader.

Deacon Jones, the Hall of Fame defensive end who’s credited with coining the term “sack” to mean tackling a passer behind the line of scrimmage, will be honored by the league by the creation of the Deacon Jones Award, which will go to the player who leads the league in sacks each year.

Although Jones played before sacks were an official statistic, historians say he would own or be near the records for most sacks in a season and most sacks in a career. Jones was not only one of the best pass rushers in the history of the sport but also the man who started referring to tackling the quarterback as “sacking” him, saying that he liked using the term that’s often used to describe the pillaging of a conquered city.

Jones, who played 17 seasons and was a member of the NFL’s All-Time Team, died on June 3 at the age of 74.

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52 Responses to “NFL will present Deacon Jones Award to sacks leader”
  1. goraidersgospurs says: Jun 22, 2013 4:23 PM

    Nice move NFL, real classy!!!

  2. evilbilly3 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:25 PM

    Awesome! If I had anything negative to say it would be that they should have done it a long time ago. Great player, Great man! God rest your soul Deacon Jones!

  3. blutbaddenbill says: Jun 22, 2013 4:26 PM

    glad they remembered deacon for what a talent he was! truly,very much deserved!

  4. smh35 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:26 PM

    The NFL is actually doing something right for once.

  5. bloomer006999999 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:26 PM

    Thank you Mr. Jones … !
    God Bless.

    - Jared Allen

  6. packerbackernj says: Jun 22, 2013 4:29 PM

    Deacon was great. Reggie was better. Should be the Reggie White Award.

  7. swagger52 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:30 PM

    Got me hooked onto football.

    RIP Deacon Jones

  8. hedleykow says: Jun 22, 2013 4:34 PM

    In the Old Testament, the English word “sackcloth” is used to translate the Hebrew word (pronounced) sawk, which is curiously (but not coincidentally) similar to the English word sack. The Hebrew word means mesh; burlap is a prime example of such a coarsely-woven material. In the New Testament, sackcloth is used to translate the Greek word (pronounced) sak-kos, which is derived from the Old Testament Hebrew word sawk.

    ~ Tim Tebow

  9. garyleee says: Jun 22, 2013 4:35 PM

    Hope the award looks like Deacon in his playing days. What an awesome idea. The M.V.P award should be called the Jim Brown award. How bout the Joe Montana for best Quarterback.

  10. berniesboys says: Jun 22, 2013 4:37 PM

    Joe Montana is not the best QB ever, so that won’t work.

  11. steelerfanforlife says: Jun 22, 2013 4:38 PM

    Classy move!

  12. frankdatank23 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:41 PM

    Like stated already this is the first piece of good news ive heard from nfl offices since Goodell was named Commish. Wow, someone there actually has a human brain that enjoys the sport of football. There might be hope.

  13. frankdatank23 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:44 PM

    or as TheGayGabbert would say….

    “blah blah blah, Jaguars this, Jaguars that.”

  14. elmaxoh says: Jun 22, 2013 4:51 PM

    Very classy , what a way to remember one of the best.

  15. duffelbagsports says: Jun 22, 2013 4:54 PM

    Who is the idiot giving a thumbs down

  16. jmack1979 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:54 PM

    Not only was he one of the best pass rushers of all time but he also coined the term,can’t think of a better man to have it named after,classy move NFL

  17. thebigtim2012 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:55 PM

    The trophy should be of deacon head slapping someone

  18. swagger52 says: Jun 22, 2013 4:59 PM

    Such a breath of fresh air to have a feel good Viking story…instead of all the crap coming from Foxboro all the time.

  19. cocheese000 says: Jun 22, 2013 5:05 PM

    Why did they wait until after he died? Shouldn’t they have done this when he was living.

  20. fanfrommontreal says: Jun 22, 2013 5:09 PM

    When I saw this I thought “Great, finally something we can all agree on”, and then I read the comments… Certain people’s pettiness and blind obsession for their own team will never cease to amaze me…

  21. pilot2011 says: Jun 22, 2013 5:25 PM

    well since Greg Hardy is getting 50 sacks this year, ya might as well go ahead and give it to him. Might even have to to rename this award.

  22. montrealraider says: Jun 22, 2013 5:42 PM

    It would have been nice to introduce the award while Mr Jones was still alive…

  23. yahmule says: Jun 22, 2013 5:46 PM

    Thank you! I was waiting for someone to ask this question. Just like these posthumous HOF inductions…why? Honor these men while they’re alive to enjoy it.

  24. greatminnesotasportsmind says: Jun 22, 2013 5:52 PM

    God are Packer fans simply annoying.

  25. allhailkingflacco says: Jun 22, 2013 5:53 PM

    Can’t wait for the 1st trophy to be presented to Elvis Dumervil and T Sizzle as co winners.

    These guys are goinng to wreak havoc on opposing QB’s.

    Can’t wait !!!

  26. realskipbayless says: Jun 22, 2013 6:06 PM

    Such a breath of fresh air to have a feel good Viking story…instead of all the crap coming from Foxboro all the time.

    He played for the rams but nice try go learn your history before you comment. I agree with the couple of commenters that said they shoulda done this while he was still alive. Its a great honor that he won’t get to enjoy but either way he deserved it.

  27. proudliberal85392 says: Jun 22, 2013 6:08 PM

    Excellent idea!

  28. jjb0811 says: Jun 22, 2013 6:37 PM

    Why is it we have to wait for a person to die to name an award after them? It’s stupid not to acknowledge a person’s achievement to their face while they are breathing.

  29. ambitoos says: Jun 22, 2013 7:23 PM

    Great idea. It should have happened when he was still alive. He’d have been so proud.

  30. leggett17 says: Jun 22, 2013 7:24 PM

    Nice black power salute at the H.O.F. Pretty much explaines his character.

  31. capegolfer says: Jun 22, 2013 7:38 PM

    Too little, too late.

  32. laramsfan4ever says: Jun 22, 2013 7:59 PM

    I was lucky enough to be Deacon Jones neighbor for a number of years . A very funny, nice and classy man. he will be missed tremendously.

  33. laramsfan4ever says: Jun 22, 2013 8:03 PM

    I am sure it would open up a can of worms but I personally would like to see the NFL give him his do by adding up his sack totals . Its to bad he had to pass away for him to be given this award. Better late then never.

  34. laramsfan4ever says: Jun 22, 2013 8:07 PM

    when you get a penalty for a head slap , That should be renamed to the Deacon Jones penalty

  35. firestarter0728 says: Jun 22, 2013 8:12 PM

    “And now, presenting the winner of 2013 Deacon Jones award…Clay Matthews III !!!”

    That does roll out quite nicely.

  36. tjq86 says: Jun 22, 2013 8:19 PM

    richard dent award

  37. dwarftosser says: Jun 22, 2013 8:21 PM

    Jones was a great player, and had likely the two greatest seasons ever to be played by a pass rusher.. but this reward should not be named after him. The utter lack of respect he showed to current great pass rushers always turned me off of this guy, and the way he got sacks, by slapping people in the head, should not be admired or emulated.. all said and done deacon Jones was a badass from another age, when defensive players could get away with stuff they can’t get away with now. He deserves to be honored, but this reward should be named after a guy who had more sacks than deacon, was a better role model and person, and who actually showed respect to the current generation of greats.. it should be the Reggie White award.

  38. scott8nj says: Jun 22, 2013 10:32 PM

    Jones played by the rules. Offensive lineman can dive at your knees, you can slap them in the head. If there was no head slap allowed he still would have been great. Don’t disrespect the man because he played by the rules that were in place when he played.

  39. stairwayto7 says: Jun 22, 2013 10:42 PM

    Once again he NFL gets it WRONG! After he dies they name an award after him? Why not 20-30 years ago? I guess when you kill someone you get the Ray Lewis or Aaron Hernandez award!

  40. 1historian says: Jun 22, 2013 10:51 PM

    excellent

  41. saintjohnwhodat says: Jun 23, 2013 12:32 AM

    A little late wish deacon could have gotten the call from the nfl that this was happening before he died

  42. channer81 says: Jun 23, 2013 12:48 AM

    Nice job NFL. I say the standard should be whoever wins the award every season, you just replace their first name with Deacon.

  43. viachicago22 says: Jun 23, 2013 2:49 AM

    I think it’s a cool idea and why not. But the NFL needs to drop the NFL Honors idea. Nice try but it’s a dog and pony show. It’s never going to be appointment television. And yet it’s promoted like it is. Just announce the award winners during the Super Bowl pregame or something.

  44. bigtimebrownie says: Jun 23, 2013 3:00 AM

    “It’s a passing league” we hear over and over. Good they’re recognizing Defense…and doing it in the name of the best.

  45. lifetimebillsfan says: Jun 23, 2013 4:35 AM

    Anyone who actually saw Deacon Jones play can appreciate the fact that the NFL is naming this award for him. He and Merlin Olson really put the “fearsome” into the Fearsome Foursome. It really is too bad that they didn’t keep statistics for QB sacks in those days because he would still hold all of the records.

    To those who complain that he used the “head slap”: he played by the rules of the game as they were–as did the offensive players who took out many a defensive lineman’s knees with cut blocks and chop blocks in an era when a serious knee injury often was a career ender. The rules weren’t as protective as they are today and the game was a lot more vicious. Deacon Jones played within the rules as they were and was incredibly dominant as a player.

    As for anyone who objects to his political stances: if you never lived as a black person in the Jim Crow South and witnessed the violence that was visited on those who were trying to register to vote and be treated with simple human dignity, you’re in no position to judge those views. Deacon Jones lived in the Jim Crow South and was subjected to that hatred. If that made him angry and he objected to it, that was his right. You may not like that, but I suspect that you would have liked being a black man in the Jim Crow South a whole lot more. Besides which, this award is being named after Deacon Jones for what he did on the field, not his politics or political views off-the-field.

  46. phillyphan72 says: Jun 23, 2013 5:38 AM

    Why is it they always wait until someone dies to name a award after them …Just don’t get it. You think they would do it while they are alive so they can get some satisfaction out of it…SMH

  47. billh1947 says: Jun 23, 2013 8:24 AM

    I watched Deacon play with the Rams and I have also watched the first recipient of the Deacon Jones award,Clay Matthews play for the Packers.this award is not just given to anybody with a big name (like an MLB all star team selection)the player has to go out and earn it and Clay will do that.

  48. omniusprime says: Jun 23, 2013 8:51 AM

    Excellent move by the NFL to honor one of the greatest players of all time. I loved watching Deacon Jones play and he was one of the main reasons I was a Rams fan back in the 60′s and 70′s.

  49. drone501 says: Jun 23, 2013 11:28 AM

    real nice move but why didn’t they do this while he was alive. just wondering.

  50. swagger52 says: Jun 23, 2013 12:00 PM

    Growing up in the 70s, I wished my name was Deacon because of Deacon Jones. I wanted my friends to call me Deacon, but alas they just called me Steve.

  51. govtminion says: Jun 23, 2013 12:37 PM

    Not often you see the NFL make a move this smart. Bravo guys, this is a great idea!

  52. musicman495 says: Jun 23, 2013 9:21 PM

    40 years late.

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