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Schwenk's report set the Rams on Munson's trail, and in 1963 Bob Water-field, the old Ram nonpareil quarterback, was given the assignment of rating four college quarterbacks. Three of them everyone knew about: George Mira of Miami (now San Francisco), Pete Beathard of University of Southern California (now Kansas City Chiefs) and Jack Concannon of Boston College (now Philadelphia Eagles). The fourth was Munson.
In Munson's senior year at Utah State Ralston moved on to Stanford, and the new coach, Tony Knap, instituted the I formation and sat back to watch Munson throw. Knap had a lot to watch. Last year Munson threw 201 times for 120 completions and 12 touchdowns and had only three interceptions. By comparison, Navy's Roger Staubach, throwing 40 fewer times, had six interceptions; George Mira had 14.
Waterfield's report on Munson was so glowing that Ram Owner Dan Reeves assigned Johnny Sanders, director of scouting for the club, to backstop Waterfield. "Both of them went out on a limb, far, far out on a limb, for Munson." Reeves says. "They climbed so far out that there was no way back."
So the Rams, a club that has drafted quarterbacks consistently every year—there are now five ex-Ram quarterbacks in the league—drafted Munson first, much to the bewilderment of the professional football world. With Roman Gabriel and Terry Baker—two former first draft picks—in camp, there was no obvious need for a quarterback.
"The first person to contact me was Johnny Sanders," Munson said the other day. "I kind of laughed. You know. I had heard so much about the Rams drafting quarterbacks. Houston had drafted me 16th, but they had Blanda and Jacky Lee, and they had drafted Don Trull as a future. There didn't seem to be much ahead for me there. And they didn't show much interest in me, either. But Mr. Sanders came to see me four different times, and the Rams were real interested. So I signed with them."
"He had no negatives, based on our scouting reports," said Svare. "From the first time I saw this boy throw, I knew he was a natural."
Munson did not realize how high he stood. "I was afraid of being cut all the time. I dreamed about it. But the rookies came to camp five days early, and we had time to get in the groove before the veterans showed up. I was settled down when they came to camp, but I was still scared."
He survived training camp and the exhibition season without too many trials. Then he suffered as traumatic an experience as any rookie quarterback can suffer—he was thrown in as the starting quarterback in the Rams' first league game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.