background, another voice says, "Alex, they ought to give you a white cane
so you can tap your way up and down the sidelines."
The Lions then
kicked off, and the tape picks up the creak of Karras' gear as he trots onto
steady roar of the crowd in the background. Over it, the voice of Middle
Linebacker Mike Lucci calling defensive signals: "Four three blitz;
blue!" The defensive team breaks its huddle with a crack of hand slaps)
Come on. Come on. Start it good. Fix 'em. (Concussion of play: heavy breathing)
Jeez! Again! My foot's smashed again! Oh my! First play and my foot's smashed.
I'm 123 years old. Keep moving. Keep moving. (Lucci's voice calling next play:
"Four three: blue") Play tough. Let's go, fellows. (To himself) Killer,
here we go. (Concussion of play; grunts) Beautiful! Beautiful! Good position.
Yum yum. Who ran that ball? Young rook? (Lucci's voice: "Four three;
blue") Once more. Yeah. (Enticingly) Come on inside here, baby. (Crash of
gear; heavy breathing) O.K., O.K.! Nice. Nice. That was beautiful. He tried to
come out and he had to go back in. (Faint voice in background: "Yeah, yeah,
I know." Stadium announcer: "Gogolak for field goal attempt") Now
who are you? I said who are you? You from Rumania? Latvia? No? Well, then, are
you from Finland? You lending class to the league? From England? That's why
you're in here? Lending class? (Concussion of play; heavy breathing; Stadium
announcer's voice: "Gogolak's attempt fails. Detroit's ball on the Lion
20") Hey! Unscrew your foot and stick it down your throat, you little
Slovakian. Jeez! (Gear creaks as he trots to bench. In background tinny band
plays "Jingle Bells") Nice going. We're going to get some points.
(Cheering the offense) Run, Melvin [ Mel Farr, Detroit running back], run, baby,
run, Beautiful! Man, look at that offense move! Mel Farr's a sweetheart. He'll
go a thousand yards this year. Man, it's raining touchdowns. I can't believe
it. Who scored that touchdown? (Shouts: "Kick-off team get ready")
(Back on defense;
Lucci's voice: "Four three; red") O.K., killer, stay tough. Here we go.
(Concussion of play; heavy breathing) You stomped my foot. You took care of my
toes! Jeez! (To Lucci, hurt on play) Hang in, Looch. Get up, Looch. Hey, Looch!
Hey, listen Johnny [John McCambridge, playing defensive end alongside]: Looch
is staying in, but he's hurting. I'm gonna play a little tight there, right?
(Lucci's voice in huddle: "Four four; blue") Right. (To himself) O.K.,
killer, here we go. (Referee's voice: "Watch your feet; watch your
feet!") Yeah, yeah, yeah, (Another play; heavy panting) I shoulda had him.
Jeez! I shoulda had him. Jeez! (On next play Karras tackles the Giant
quarterback) D'ja like that, Fran? Hey, Fran, d'ja like that? Hey, Fran? Hey,
Fran? Hey, Fran, what ya think? (Announcer's voice in distance: "...tackled
") Oh yes. Oh my yes.
bench) Sweet. Sweet. It's like a bunch of bees out there. Really swarming. No
fun being a halfback today. Gang tackling. Real bunch of bees. C'mon. C'mon.
Lace them out there! Lay it on them! (Band is playing "Rudolph the
Red-Nosed Reindeer" in background) Run, baby, run. I'm going to tell you
something right now; it's nice. It's nice sitting here in New York on a wood
bench in the sun with your team doing fine. (Unidentified voice: "Man, I
got a good bunch of Tarkenton that time. How's your man coming?") He comes
strong. They were right during the week with those scouting reports. Dess
[Darrell Dess, the Giant offensive guard] uses that forearm. He's good. He's
rough to get by. They got anybody to come in for him? Some kid from Tennessee?
(Crowd noise rises) What was that! Horrible!
(Back out on
defense. Lucci's voice: "Four four blitz; red." Referee's voice:
"Watch your feet!") Stay tough. Yum yum. (Crash of play) Double twist!
Great! Great! (Calling to one of the linebackers) Good position, baby.
Beautiful! (Unidentified voice: "O. K. Let's keep 'em back in the
too/house") Hey, Jer [Jerry Rush, the tackle playing alongside], Jer,
there's a little trap on me. (On next play Karras reaches Tarkenton again)
Hiya, Fran. Howdeedodee, Fran. Hey, Fran, you like it out here? Hey, Fran. Hey,
Fran, baby. Nice. Nice. (Lucci's voice: "Four three blitz; blue")
Double twist! (Lucci yelling: "Open rig/it! Open! Open!") Hold him up!
Get that guy. (Loud applause and yelling; distant yell) What happened? What the
hell happened? What's going on? Hold him up for Chrissakes. (Snorts violently.
Calms down) Come on, boys. One more play. (Play called in huddle) I screwed up
on that, Jer. Shoulda had him. Give me room and keep outside this time. I'm
going to play him a little tight. Come on, Jer. (Concussion of play; thudding:
heavy panting) Nice, nice. Yes. Yes. (On way to bench, announcer's voice:
"...brought down by Karras") Alll ri-ight. Right at me. Way to go, Paul
[Paul Naumoff, the outside linebacker]. Yum yum. (On Bench) Real sweet out
there. Isn't it the quarter yet? Run, baby! (Urging on the offense) Beautiful!
Get some points. Jeez! (Tries to clear throat) I got this upper respiratory
problem. I got a headache I wouldn't wish on Khrushchev. Killing me. Just
killing me. What down is it? Third? Third and what? (Announcer's voice, with
slight Continental inflection: "...carried by Fair") D'ja hear that?
(In heavy British accent) "...bawl kerried by Melvin Fah of England."
That's what I like. A lot of class in NFL football! Carrying British stadium
announcers. Quite! Splendid! What the hell is wrong with Amos [ Amos Marsh,
Detroit fullback]. Tired? I wish I could get tired anytime I felt like it, walk
off like that and sit down. Put him back in. Get the force out there. Damn. No
more scrambling, gang. Let's lay it on them. Block that man! (Ragtime band in
background: "You've got the sweetest little baby face") Keep it up. Oh
my. That's lousy. That's horrible! (Announcer's voice: "...tackled by
Lockhart") One foot. One little foot. That's all they had to make. A foot.
You know how big a foot is. (Announcer's voice: "Fourth and one")
Twelve inches. Couldn't make twelve little inches, so I've got to go to the
pressure cooker. (Karras runs back onto field) The pressure cooker. Jeez!
(Announcer's voice: "That's the end of the quarter") Hey, you hear that
announcer from England. "Quatah! Quatah! What class! (Lucci calls defensive
play) Hello (to new Giant guard). Who are you? I'm 123 years old. Y'all from
Tennessee? You one of them cotton-pick-in' hillbillies? Well, I do de-clare.
What's a li'l ol' Southern boy like you doin' out here in this mess? (Line
judge calling: "Offensive linemen, keep those hands in. I'm going to call
it on you. That's a warning." Concussion of play; Karras gets to Tarkenton)
Hi ho, Fran. What are you doing on the floor? (Announcer's voice:
"...brought down by Karras") Hey, Fran? That's some li'l ol' Southern
boy you got yourself for pass protection—mah goodness. (Lucci calls play:
"Four three blitz; blue") Hello. Hello. You still in here? Goodness.
What you breathin' so hard fo', li'l boy? (Concussion of play; heavy panting)
What's that for? Ref! What you throwing down that flag for? Wait a minute!
(Yelling) He was on the ground already! Holding face mask? Oh that's horrible,
ref, that's a horrible call. He was on the ground. The play was over! (Players
arguing) Shut up! I'll talk. Shut up for a minute. I'm the captain. I'll talk.
Don't tell me not to talk. (Voices calm Karras down; one says, "Fm with
you, Alex") O.K., then. (Calmer) O.K. O.K. (Lucci calls defensive huddle
together: "Four three blitz; blue") O.K., Jer. Let's get them. (Crash
of contact) You held me! You held me! You hold me again and I'll punch your
hillbilly head off. Get off me! (Next play; crash of gear) Nice. Nice. Come to
me. That's it...go to your knees! (Announcer's voice: "Fourth down."
Lucci's voice: "Double twist. Special set." On the way to the line
Karras and Jerry Rush hold whispered conversation regarding which of them will
be the primary attacker in the looping maneuver by the two tackles):