Manny Sistrunk, an uncelebrated evaluator of coaches, was ready with a comparision of George Allen and Dick Vermeil yesterday after his Philadelphia Eagles clinched a playoff check for him.
"George tried to outsmart the other teams and concentrated on having us making no mistakes," the former Redskins defensive lineman said. "Dick believes in hard work to make up for mistakes. He works us a whole lot harder than George did the Redskins.
"I believe that if you try to do good work and work hard, good things will happen to you. I had a pretty good year after missing four or five weeks with a shoulder injury. I had three or four playoff checks and a Super Bowl check with the Redskins. Now we have a chance to go all the way." Vermeil said after the Eagles beat the Giants, 20-3, and clinched a wildcard visit to Atlanta, "I'm happy with a 9-7 record. Nine victories were our goal. We got it done. The players got it done with hard work in training camp and in practices.
"In the second half of the season we cut our practices back to two hours (from 1 p.m. to 4 to 3 or 3:15 p.m.)."
Vermeil's work ethic is not likely to catch on as a glamorous secret of success remembering that George Allen got in hot water at Los Angeles because some of the Rams complained about his long workouts.
"What I learned as an assistant to George Allen (in Allen's first term as Ram coach) was persistence," Vermeil said. "To think that nobody can beat you, and to surround yourself with people who think that."
Allen made a few references discussions about Oakland players with Raider general managing partner Al. Davis while serving as the CBS analyst on the telecast of the Oakland-minnesota game.
It could have been significant in view of Allen being out of coaching and speculation that Taider coach John Madden might want out to join the New York Giants.
Madden tried to put that notion on the back burner, saying with conviction, "The last game I ever coach will be with the Oakland Raiders. Now, you can make what you want of it."
Fewer that 24 hours later, the Giants announced that Coach John Mcvay and Andy Robustelli (director of operations) were through with the organization. And before last night's game with Miami, New England Patriot Coach Chuck Fairbanks was suspended.