John Madden on Tatum's reaction to Stingley injury: "It ate at him his whole life"

As part of an excellent obituary of former Raiders safety Jack Tatum, who died Tuesday of a heart attack while waiting for a kidney transplant, Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times obtained reaction from Tatum’s coach in Oakland, John Madden.

Madden told Farmer that the play for which Tatum was most notorious — the August 1978 hit on Patriots receiver Darryl Stingley that left him paralyzed — had a dramatic impact on the man who seemed to relish his reputation as a fierce hitter.

It ate at him his whole life,” Madden said of Tatum.

Madden also said that Tatum didn’t want to be known as an assassin, but that the label was foisted upon him based on the title to Tatum’s autobiography.  “After the book, people started to call him ‘The Assassin’ and say that
that was his nickname, which was never true, and that he called himself
an assassin, which he didn’t,” Madden told Farmer.  “The story is that he’s a
high school All-American and he’s recruited to Ohio State as a hitter. 
And he’s praised to be a hitter.  And he plays at Ohio State and he’s an
All-American, because he’s a hitter.  And he goes to the pros and is a
first-round draft choice because he’s a hitter.

“And then he hits a guy, the guy doesn’t get up, and they call him an

First of all, that brilliant-in-its-simplicity explanation from Madden makes me realize how much I miss hearing him on my television.  Second, Tatum really shouldn’t be chastised for doing too effectively the job he was hired to do — especially since the NFL still loves to show us the kinds of hits that Tatum used to dish out, as long as the guy who absorbed the blow was able to get up afterward.

69 responses to “John Madden on Tatum's reaction to Stingley injury: "It ate at him his whole life"

  1. So the title was “foisted on him based on the title of his autobiography”? Bummer. I guess I better change mine from “The Jerk” to “Big Member” or something like that. Just in case.

  2. Tatum has a reputation as one of the dirtiest players in the history of the game, which is a crock. Yeah, he leveled his share of questionable hits, but so did everyone, especially on those Raider teams. Tatum just hit people so brutally hard, it seemed like it had to be dirty.
    (Big Ben Davidson on the other hand…now there was a dirty mf-er.)
    The Stingley hit was a tragic accident, no more.

  3. Mike Florio said:
    First of all, that brilliant-in-its-simplicity explanation from Madden makes me realize how much I miss hearing him on my television. Second, Tatum really shouldn’t be chastised for doing too effectively the job he was hired to do — especially since the NFL still loves to show us the kinds of hits that Tatum used to dish out, as long as the guy who absorbed the blow was able to get up afterward.
    Some of your best work…excellent writing, kudos.

  4. By the way, hopefully this story will be read by all the judgmental asses who basically claimed Tatum was History’s Greatest Monster and that he stood over Darryl Stingley and laughed, then pissed on his grave after he died. I’m looking at you, Pats fans.

  5. “Welcome to our exclusive Gated Community, Mr. Tatum, but I don’t want to seem stuffy, just call me Pete. What is your nickname, might I ask?”.

  6. I have no idea why people on the other post were so cruel toward Jack, other than ignorance. The hit on Stingley was unfortunate, but legal and drew no penalty or fine. Tatum was a beast.
    R.I.P. Mr. Tatum.

  7. Jack Tatum RIP.
    The whole story is nostalgic to a more violent game. I’d love to see the raiders establish a dominant D. I don’t care if you hit and get fined, or you don’t as long as you stop the guy w/ the ball in his tracks!

  8. To bad all the morons who i saw earlier were writing some pretty nasty things on here about Jack Tatum. But they have no clue what they were talking about like usual. Jack tried to go visit him and the Stingley family would not allow it. The NFL called it a clean hit and the patriots called it a clean hit. everyone head hunted in those days that’s the way the game was played. Be it right or wrong everyone was hitting like that. Jack never went out on the field and said i hope i paralyze someone today. It’s sad people just repeat the crap they hear instead of doing research on it themselves. I guess that’s why they are as ignorant as they are. RIP Jack.

  9. Let it be known. And we miss John Madden, too.
    Rest in peace, Jack and Darryl – you were here.

  10. Excerpt from Oakland Tribune story (
    “It could have happened to anybody,” Tatum said. “People are always saying, ‘He didn’t apologize.’ I don’t think I did anything wrong that I need to apologize for. It was a clean hit.”
    Then-Patriots coach Chuck Fairbanks backed Tatum.
    “I saw replays many, many times, and many times Jack Tatum was criticized,” Fairbanks said several years ago. “But there wasn’t anything at the time that was illegal about that play.
    “I do think probably that play was a forerunner for some of the changes in rules that exist today that are more protective of receivers, especially if there is head-to-head-type contact. I think that probably pre-empted some of the things that happened today.”

  11. 1 – The NFL likes to show clean hits – there’s a reason why there is no film and no quality video of the Stingley hit.
    2 – Contrary to Madden, there is NO evidence Jack Tatum was ever bothered by basically killing Stingley – he tried to profit from it with his books and Stingley refused to go along with it.
    Tatum lost his leg and eventually suffered a heart attack because payback from the fates is a beech.

  12. Yup, Tatum played back in the day when men were men. Grampa loves to tell the kids the tale of Jack and the Brainstem.

  13. Hey Asswipe Johnson-
    You couldn’t have said it any better.
    It is a great post to read; truly.
    Great writing Florio!

  14. As always Coach Madden has articulated his thoughts in a way no one else ever could.
    Jack Tatum played with an intensity, determination and tenacity that absolutely no one before him or since him has been able to match. If the Raiders (or any other team for that matter) had 53 men on the roster with his work ethic they’d be undefeated.
    All of the haters who use Jack’s untimely death as a sounding board for their ignorant, uninformed and unwarranted remarks should shut up and have a clue what they’re talking about before opening their sewers.
    RIP Jack. You will always be missed by the Nation.

  15. Tatum’s hit was totally legal back then. This was just a tragedy that under the same cicumstances any player could have done to another. There have been other injuries close to if not as bad as the one Stingley. Every player knows that the next play could be their last. It’s just the nature of the game.

  16. If John Maddens comments are to be believed , then why was Jack Tatum writing books AND MAKING MONEY using the Assassin word in the title ? The plain fact of the matter is Jack Tatum was a headhunter and every player in the league at that time knew it . The Stingley hit was rediculous because it happened in a meaningless pre-season game . Another example was the near decapitation of Lynn Swann in the 1974 AFC Championship game by a horse collar . Swann was wheeled from the field on a stretcher and spent almost a week in the hospital with head an neck injuries . The fact that he never tried to reach out to Daryl Stingley after the injury speaks volumes about what kind of a man Jack Tatum really was .

  17. Jack Tatum was a football player and a champion. He played the game like it was meant to be played. This Steeler fan can appreciate watching him play. God Rest his soul

  18. This is absurd on so many counts.
    First, if it’s an autobiography, the title of the book cannot be “foisted” upon you. This book was just one of several known attempts by Tatum to cash in on the hit that left a man paralyzed for life.
    It’s not so much the unnecessary hit to the head in a meaningless preseason game that makes Tatum such a maggot…it’s the outrageous way he acted afterward.
    He danced and fist-pumped over his motionless body on the field. He never once visited Stingley in the hospital where he almost died. The only times Tatum planned to meet Stingley was well afterward when Tatum was trying to cash in – once with a book deal and he wanted Stingly quoted in the book and once when he was going to meet Stingley but showed up with a crew of cameramen (Stingley refused to meet him when he realized what Tatum was up to).
    If there is a Hell, Tatum is there.
    It’s a little known fact that this devastating injury to Stingley, and Madden’s up-close observations after the fact (he was a regular visitor at the hospital), played a major role in Madden quitting coaching.

  19. his hits were legal in his time.
    rules were changed because of him.
    RIP Jack..

  20. RIP? I hope he burns in hell.
    The cheap shot he gave to Stingley was just that – a cheap shot.
    To nail a guy in a preseason game well after an overthrown ball sailed by is unthinkable to do period.
    Couple that with the fact that he NEVER EVER apoligized for doing it earns him the NFL turd of the century award.
    Yeah, you may have heard stories of how he tried to contact the family to talk to them about it, but it was ALAYS with a news crew. He did not ever try to do it on a personal note because he never knew what the word personal meant.
    He got a small taste of what Darryl went through the rest of his life the last few years on the planet. If there is any justice in the cosmos he will continue to suffer for the rest of eternity.
    RIP my ass….

  21. Death cleanses all, eh? Coach says: July 28, 2010 12:35 AM
    I have no idea why people on the other post were so cruel toward Jack, other than ignorance. The hit on Stingley was unfortunate, but legal and drew no penalty or fine. Tatum was a beast.
    R.I.P. Mr. Tatum.
    The hit was legal. He showed no remorse. Ever. He was a bad man. RIP my arse.
    And I never heard that Tatum tried to visit Daryl Stingley. Ever. I remember how bitter Stingley was about Tatum’s “non” reaction/apology. Tatum was a vicious hitter and showed no remorse over a long period of time. And that’s a fact, Jack. I rode an elevator with Daryl Stingley multiple times in the building he lived, about 1991 or so, and he was one miserable, bitter man.
    As for missing John Madden, this is why I love this site you rumor mongoring, conspiracy theorizing, italian leprechan. Living the dream”. Florio, you’re a moron. I don’t miss John Madden one bit. I only recall the 400th time Madden would “explain” “the wedge”. It would have been more interesting if he dissected a bleu cheese wedge salad. I don’t recall ever learning anything from his commentary. He’s a moron, a hero to the stupid. Left Pat Sommeral high and dry, thank-you-very-much.
    Ditka won one championship with a team that should have won many and for that he is roundly criticized. What about Madden? Why not criticize Madden? All those Chuck Knoll Steeler rings went right through Madden’s Oakland. Overrated coach, horrrrrrrrible
    broadcaster. Florio, all that NBC money has gone to your 5 foot tall head.
    Missing Madden, indeed. Like ptomaine poisoning, you midget Florio.

  22. In the event that the morons didn’t get the memo ealier;
    I wasn’t even planning on wearing a jersey (not even my autographed Jim Otto). But now, in light of the fact that you disrespectful idiosos are trashing the recently departed man, I will purchase his jersey and glady wear it Sept. 10, 7PM at the Sheraton Hotel, World Championship of Fantasy Football (WCOFF) Main Event in Atlantic City, ‘Jersey.
    I pray that someone steps to my face in person talking that trash.
    ‘You idiots happen to be in ‘Jersey that night, your’re more than invited to stop by and get destroyed. I’ll be the one wearing #32 and I am the owner of the fantasy team ‘Bob, Bill, George, Scott, Phil 1962.’
    Good riddance losers.
    ‘Forcing them all to believe……
    P.S. Robert Ethan, Funi, Sour-Bro; please give me an early Xmas gift by showing up.

  23. The problem isn’t the hit, it was a legal hit (I have seen it many times now) but the problem is that he used this hit and celebrated it to make a profit through his books.
    He used paralyzing someone to make money and they when he finally wanted to clear the air he brought a camera crew as part of a reality show for Fox 9 in Chicago.
    What about that do you and aider fans not get?
    Is it that hard to understand?

  24. It ate at Tatum so much that the only way he could drown his sorrys was to shamelessly profit off paralyzing Stingley and never make a single effort to meet Stingley face to face to apologize to him except when it would be televised to promote his book titled after a nickname he hated people calling him. Sorry, it is easy to revise history after the people involved are dead, but Stingley is still waiting for Tatum to apologize without being a cheap publicity stunt.

  25. Darryl Stingley on Jack Tatum:
    “I told him if they showed up at my door without a camera then we could have some real healing,” Stingley said. “This is a world built on hype. Selling newspapers. TV ratings. Those are real. But in my world what’s important is to have a forgiving nature. I was always ready for reconciliation with Jack Tatum. I was willing to do it once before until we learned at the final hour that it was about selling a new book. That changed my mind. I could not allow anybody to capitalize on my situation any more.
    “I could not understand why a person would still take that approach so many years later. How could he try to take advantage of the situation again? How could he not feel serious regret or remorse for what happened?
    “If he called me today, I’d answer. If he came to my house, I’d open my door to him. All I ever wanted was for him to acknowledge me as a human being. I just wanted to hear from him if he felt sorry or not. It’s not like I’m unreachable. But it’s not a phone call I’ll be waiting for anymore.”
    Yes, it ate Tatum up – that he couldn’t get that slam dunk on air apology to Stingley to sell more books.

  26. Tatum will have a long time in Hell to think about how it ate him up and how he cold-heartily tried to profit off the situation and use Stingley as a marketing stunt to sell more books.

  27. See if you can find the Super Bowl 11 hit Tatum made on Sammy White on YouTube. It was a clean hit, that was vintage Tatum.
    He just had this knack of timing his coming in just right to hit guys as they were turning around.
    Tatum was rarely flagged. He really wasn’t a dirty player, he was a brilliant hitter. The hit on Stingley looked like just another hit until the man didn’t get up. It didn’t look like anything out of the ordinary, just like play where Dennis Byrd broke his neck didn’t look that bad at first either.
    It was just a freak occurrence. The amazing thing when you consider how many thousands of times a year these athletes throw themselves into each other during an NFL season is that more guys don’t get seriously hurt.
    Prayers for Tatum and his family.

  28. there’s no question Tatum was playing the game fairly for what the rules were in those days, just a lot harder and better than others.
    but when the guy labels himself “the assassin” after his hit on Stingley, probably just to sell books, don’t come crying to me about how he unfairly got stuck with that nickname

  29. Hey all you Patsie fans crying about how the Raiders beat the snot out of your players, back in the day…..
    Back in black baby.

  30. He was a big fat jerk, is what he was…I don’t care if it was legal, you personally by your own hands put the man in a wheelchair for life IN A GAME, not in battle or anything, and you don’t ever show the slightest indication that you give a damn.
    The fact that every Raider always stood by you afterward for years and years is equally appalling.
    The fact that you ended up in a wheelchair is a little bit of justice, but you had no class or ounce of decency in you at all, Mr. Tatum, and most of us won’t miss you or feel bad for you.

  31. Dear NFL fans,
    Please excuse the Raider fans for not realizing that the issue is how Tatum celebrated paralyzing someone that pisses people off and not the hit.
    They can’t read and their intelligence is…….. well non-existent.

  32. Tatum went to OSU as a running back, and switched to DB in his sophmore year. Actually played some RB his freshman year as the 2nd string FB.
    I don’t understand how you complain that the title of your autobiography became your nickname.
    Tatum is loved by Raider fans and hated by everyone else. I call BS on Madden’s statement, but I’d expect no less from him and the other Oakland apologists.

  33. Yes Joe Toronto
    Back in the day when disco was king and Saturday Night Fever was the #1 movie., 30 years ago.
    You are starting to sound like a Jets fan.
    Oakland is the west coast version of Newark, NJ to SF/NYC
    Nation ?? Third world more likely.
    Filled with a bunch of cross dressing Star Trek/ WWE wannabes.
    Tuck that !!!!!!!!

  34. Football fans, and Patriots fans, have always distinguished between the hit and how it was celebrated. The hit was clean. In the opinion of most, it was unnecessary, but football is a dangerous game and stuff happens on the field.
    Tatum’s celebration afterwards, his failure to visit Stingley and his refusal to apologize for the aftermath are what stick in the craw of most fans outside of Oakland and parts of Ohio.
    Most fans distinguish between “visiting Stingley” and “visiting Stingley with a camera crew.”
    And they most especially distinguish between John Madden and Jack Tatum. John Madden is a good and decent man off the field; Jack Tatum wasn’t.

  35. I have to laugh at the *Patsy fans still crying about Jack Tatum. The man was one of the two best safeties to ever play the game, the other being Ronnie Lott. If you’re going to blame Tatum for the death of Stingley, then some modicum of blame goes to your QB and coach for calling a play that puts their best WR directly in the cross-hairs of the game’s hardest hitter. The QB hung Stingley out to dry in a preseason game that eventually killed him. So keep crying, *Patsy fans. Football happens.
    RIP, Jack Tatum.

  36. Jack tried to apologize to Stingley in heaven, but Rozelle told him they sent that whiny tard to hell to roast in his wheel chair for eternity…so I guess that would be Jack’s fault also?

  37. 1.) Tatum never reaching out after the accident?
    (Why should he have had to, “uhh sorry, uhh I tackled you like anyone else would have that played safety in the 70’s”.) No apology is as good as one that’s unwarranted. And to you “popular culture” people that thrive on seeing “remorse”, I’d love to hear your opinions on Ray Lewis having a guy murdered, Tiki Barber messing around on his preggo wife, Stallworth killing a guy while drunk, Vick killing hundreds of animals, etc, etc.)
    2.) Can anyone post a link so we can see Tatum celebrating and dancing over someone he made a quadriplegic?
    (Given any of the video available on a post-Tatum hit doesn’t have him dancing around like Deion Sanders, I’m disinclined to believe this).
    3.) Another Patriots fan claimed Tatum accepted payment for knocking someone out of the game? (can we have some evidence of this too?)

  38. He used the phrase “They call me Assasin”, because they do, not because he does.
    The book ISN’T called “I call MYSELF the Assasin”!!
    Yes, it was foisted upon him….

  39. I don’t think Pats fans and people from the NE area were upset about the hit itself… it’s the fact that the guy never seemed to show ANY remorse for the hit. Would it have been too much of a hit to Tatum’s ego and reputation to express remorse for what happened Stingley due to the hit? It was a freak accident, but the dude acted like an ass for the rest of his life. Eff him…deserves what he got with ending up handicapped due to complications with diabetes.
    As for Madden…the Boston sports station (98.5), was explaining that either John Madden and/or his wife visited Stingley in the LA hospital every day. Madden helped out Stingley financially on occasion and at one point while in the hospital, one of the machine alarms was going off and no nurse or doctor was around. Madden was there and ran out to find someone to help. Stingley always wondered what may have happened if Madden wasn’t there to get help. Maybe nothing would have happened, maybe something…but he was thankful that John Madden and his wife were there.

  40. Tatum was the Rodney Harrison of his day. He played as hard as he could every minute of every game until the clock ran out no matter what the score was. Lazy players and wimps who didn’t want to play hard at the end of a game that had already been decided called him dirty.
    @Black QB White RB,
    You act like he injured Stingley on purpose. He didn’t. Many players hit hard in the nfl and cause injuries. The injuries may not be as severe as what happened to Stingley, but they have still injured someone playing a game. I don’t hear you calling them jerks for playing hard.

  41. You can’t blame a guy for doing something 100% legal in the rules in then not feeling bad about it. It was an accident. If it was illegal then it would be a totally different story. And there’s a difference between feeling bad and feeling the need to apologize. You can feel bad that it happened but not have it be anyone’s fault.
    And the title of the book was “THEY call me Assassin”, not “I am the Assassin”.

  42. Hey BostonPatriot and patsfansince73….
    Why does a man need to apologize for doing something he was paid to do? Would you feel better if Tatum quit football and became Stingley’s nurse?
    It is a game where serious injuries can occur every day. I agree he could have shown some more remorse but to crucify him for doing his job is absurd.
    You will probably go to your grave thinking that Eli Manning is the Anti Christ for kicking the shit out of your beloved Patriots and ruining your perfect season. Get over it, everyone knows that is why Pats fans are so bitter about life. Last chance at glory…get used to being middle of the pack for the next 20 or 30 years.
    By the way how is Tom the Tightwad Whiner doing? I heard he left a three dollar tip last week on a two hundred dollar meal and he feels as good about it as Eli did giving a million.

  43. RIP Jack Tatum! You were the best that ever played your position!
    Ignorant people will forever hate, but only God knew your true self!

  44. @ The Real Shuxion,
    It’s morons like you as to why I created my moniker…take a real close look. You bytches are complaining about everything, not just a celebration. People spin stories however they want to…just like you. You show me where Jack, HIMSELF, ever said he was glad that Stingley was paralyzed or celebrated the fact. Immediately after the hit you @ssbags act like Jack knew what was wrong…you fvcks make me ill. You keep talking all that trash…ya never know when a member of your family is going to have something tragic happen to them…then post it so everyone can just assume the worst…you d-bag.
    You need to stop preaching, cuz I’m damn sure you are the last person that should be doing that. Now go climb back into the hole in which you came from…you’re dismissed

  45. Dave3258 couldn’t have said it any better. The fact that the guy took advantage of the nickname that he was given shows that he embraced it. At least he did long enough to write multiple books about it. I’m a big Buckeyes fan and will tell you first hand the guy was a scumbag. No excuse on him never ever reaching out to Stingley in all of those years. People like this who are so emotionaly broken who don’t even care to search for forgiveness or redemption will truly spend eternity in a not so comfortable place. If it ate at him he would have made it right. Sad human being.

  46. I like people trying to justify anyone’s style of play by comparing them to a roided-up cheap shot machine like Rodney Harrison.

  47. He never reached out because he didn’t hit illegally? Fine, the hit was legal based on the rules at the time. But the result was that Jack Tatum broke Stingley’s neck and effectively ended his life. And for this he could see no reason to reach out to Stingley? “Hey Darryl, I’m really sorry I paralyzed you, it’s such a horrible accident… I wish you the best and if there is anything I can do to help in your recovery please get in touch with me” Something as simple as that would have made such a difference. Just knowing the guy felt sorry he crippled another human being. But even that morsel of kindness was not in this man’s soul. Not until he needed him to make some money did he ever try to “reach out”. No, sorry kids, there is no R.I.P. for Tatum from this person because I am quite sure he is NOT resting in peace.

  48. @Mike Daly,
    Jack Tatum’s corpse could still kick your ass, you ignorant son of a bitch.
    Your opinion of Tatum’s feelings about the Stingley hit are based on what? Diarrhea of the fingers… and even that is being generous.

  49. I have no problem with the initial hit – I don’t think anyone in their right mind should – but he was a douche about it afterwards. He didn’t want to be called the Assassin? LOL. Then why use that as the title of your book? Some good ole Madden logic at play.

  50. I loved Jack Tatum when he was playing. With him and Lester Hayes and his stickum the Raiders were fun to watch! And the hit that paralyzed Daryll Stingley was a good, clean hit…but I did not realize or just forgot that it was a preseason game! WOW! That makes it a lot tougher to defend!

  51. A quote from Stingley about Tatum’s diabetes, “You can’t, as a human being, feel happy about something like that happening to another human being,” Stingley told the Boston Globe in 2003. “Maybe the natural reaction is to think he got what was coming to him, but I don’t accept human nature as our real nature. Human nature teaches us to hate. God teaches us to love.”
    Maybe some of you douchebag Patriot fans should learn something from Stingley. All of you disrespecting a man who has just passed is disgusting. By your logic, you all have something bad coming your way for the way you are acting.
    And for those that don’t believe that Tatum tried to go to the hospital after the game, Phil Villapiano was with Tatum that night and has said as much.

  52. He was the epitome of Raider nation – a classless, self-centered moron who didn’t care about anyone or anything else but himself.
    All of you trying to defend him need to get real and understand that.

  53. I’m disgusted at the credit you are giving this guy. He was a hell of a player. He was doing his job. It was a questionable but legal his in a preseason game. He stood over the guy who was NOT MOVING and pumped his fists, ok, I can deal with that. No one is aruging he was a great FOOTBALL player what people are mad about is him being looked at as a great human being which he WAS NOT!
    He NEVER truly tried to apologize or at least show SOME sympathy. He showed up at the guys house with a CAMERA crew and profited off of the hit. THAT’S what people are mad about.

  54. mreailly22 explains it just right. Tatum was never bothered by it whatsoever and whilke he may have been a talented football player, he was far from a good human being. It doesn’t take much to feel remorse for someone that is paralyzed.

  55. Ate at him? The bastard never apologized to him! I hope he enjoys buring in hell! Once an ass always an ass!

  56. @ Junior
    John Madden and/or his wife was with Stingley every minute of his stay in the hospital in CA before he was moved. Don’t you think he would have known and corroborated that story if it were true since he and his wife were there the whole time and since, according to his own words, he loved the guy? Don’t you think he would have covered for Tatum if that were true?
    Villapiano’s a caricature who will stick up for his friends. I don’t take him seriously. There has been no corroborating evidence from the Stingley family that he tried to visit him in the hospital. EVER. Not that night. Not the next day.
    I am not glad Tatum’s dead or say he got what was coming. That’s dumb and doesn’t accomplish anything. What I’m saying is that Tatum is a liar and never tried to legitimately reconcile with Stingley on a personal level, which was all Stingley ever wanted.
    This is what gets me more than the hit even though I do think it was a cheap shot in a PRESEASON game!

  57. Thank you florio for not making a wise-crack comment about John Madden, whose simplistic but authentic analysis has always been a major boon to any football game. I think he sums it up well. Haters need to chill out.

  58. @ Junior,
    Stingley showed grace and class through the whole ordeal when Tatum started losing body parts to his disease. It’s a shame that over the 25 year span after the hit, that Tatum had the chance to show the same grace he never could.
    That should say it all about this person. He had 25 years to say something human and he never did. WHAT A GUY, a true Raider right to the grave.

  59. @bandwagon pats fans
    there was life before 2002 too bad your team wasn’t a part of it.
    the hit WAS legal and he did try to apologize…
    leave it to your wicked awesome nonsence to not read through.
    chowdah headz.

  60. @BCGreg
    A quote from Madden’s 1985 book, “Hey Wait a Minute”:
    “Some of the Raider players also visited him, but Darryl was bitter that Jack Tatum never came. Jack had tried. The day Jack arrived at the hospital he was told he couldn’t see Darryl. That wasn’t unusual— whenever Darryl was being treated, nobody could see him. But I think Jack got the impression Darryl didn’t want to see him, or that Darryl’s wife or his mother and brother didn’t want Darryl to see him. Whatever it was, Jack left the hospital and never returned.”
    There’s your corroboration from Madden. But don’t get me wrong, he probably should have tried again.
    The way some of these Pats fans and DenverWally are acting is disgusting. A man has passed away. If Stingley himself had the class to utter the words in my previous post, what right do any of them have to bash a guy for something that didn’t have anything to do with them. Just shows the ignorance of some fan bases.

  61. It looks like many of you have never actually seen the hit.
    A cheap shot well after the throw? No. Try a fraction of a second after the ball sailed out of Stingley’s reach. And Tatum could never have seen whether it was incomplete, and even if he could, he could never have stopped himself.
    It was a tragic accident, but if Stingley gets up after that play, no one ever remembers it. Period.

  62. @ Junior
    Thanks for the quote from Madden’s book. I was unaware of that. My bad. Although, I think that if Tatum did try to visit him in the hospital, this fact should be brought up every time this topic comes up. The fact that no one points out this fact leads a lot of people to believe that he never tried at the hospital.
    Like you said though. He should have tried harder and with more sincerity.

  63. Stingley was at the same restaurant as Tatum and was surrounded with women.a drunk Stingley was talking crap about Tatum in an attempt to impress the girls he was with and embarrass Tatum.Tatum got up and put the fear of god into Stingley who ended up actually crying at the table.Tatum had a heart.

  64. Another quote from Joe Fitzgerald of the Boston Herald who interviewed Tatum some years ago.
    Tatum boasts in his book, “I like to believe my best hits border on felonious assualt. I never make a tackle just to bring someone down I want to punish the man I’m going after.” Fair enough. Heard it before.
    Fitzgerald claims that Tatum admitted he didn’t have to brutalize Stingley since it was OBVIOUS (my emphasis) he was NOT going to catch the ball.
    Tatum continues, “I could have attempted to intercept, but I automatically reacted by going for the intimidating hit.”
    So, Tatum knew Stingley couldn’t catch the pass, knew he could have made an attempt on the ball, yet made the decision to “intimidate” the receiver with an unnecessary hit in a PRESEASON game.
    For those of you who have posted here that there is no way that Tatum saw what was going on before the hit or could have pulled back, I give you the quote from the man who made that decision. So, if he made that conscious decision to “punish” Stingley, it makes his lack of remorse even more egregious. That he had no concern for a vulnerable opponent even though he says he could have laid off make the hit a cheap shot.

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