Jack Teele, organizer of Super Bowl I and namer of “Fearsome Foursome,” dies at 87

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Jack Teele, a longtime NFL executive whose work included helping to organize the first Super Bowl and helping to popularize the legendary Los Angeles Rams defensive line of the 1960s and 1970s, has died.

According to the Long Beach Press-Telegram, Teele died at age 87 on Wednesday.

During Teele’s 21-year stint as an executive with the Rams, he popularized the use of the nickname “Fearsome Foursome” to describe their line of Deacon Jones, Merlin Olsen, Rosey Grier and Lamar Lundy. (The first known use of that nickname, however, came in 1957 with a defensive line Grier played on with the Giants.)

Teele was also an organizer of the first Super Bowl, which at the time the league referred to with the clunky name of the NFL-AFL World Championship Game. Later in his career he spent time in the San Diego Chargers’ front office, and then he helped get the Barcelona Dragons of the World League of American Football off the ground.

3 responses to “Jack Teele, organizer of Super Bowl I and namer of “Fearsome Foursome,” dies at 87

  1. The league had so much more character back then. Seems like it’s mostly faceless cogs and coaches afraid for their jobs now.

  2. Fearsome Foursome: not the originator of the term as the article states…(1)NY Giants 1957 line consisting of ends Andy Robustelli and Jim Katcavage, and tackles Rosey Grier and Dick Modzelewski, 1961 San Diego Chargers’ defensive front four, including starters DE Ron Nery, DT Bill Hudson, DT Ernie Ladd, and DE Earl Faison, 1962 Detroit Lions line of Roger Brown, Alex Karras, Darris McCord, and Sam Williams all were known as the fearsome foursome. If my fading memory is correct, the 1958 Colt’s defensive line (Marchetti, Donovan, Lipscomb, and Braase) was also called the fearsome foursome by the News-American but I cannot find any reference on the web to support it…

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