Deacon Jones was the master of his craft, the quarterback sack.
David “Deacon” Jones, the man who gave birth to the term “sack” has passed away at age 74 from natural causes according to the Washington Redskins Executive Vice President and General Manager Bruce Allen.
It’s only fitting Deacon Jones left this world due to natural causes. It would be hard to fathom any disease taking one of the most feared men in NFL history down?
Jones was a 14th round pick (186 overall) of the Los Angeles Rams out of Mississippi Valley State in 1961. Jones spent 10 years with the Rams and was a part of one of the greatest defensive lines of all time. The Fearsome Foursome consisted of Rosie Greer, Lamar Lundy, Merlin Olsen and Jones. At defensive end, Jones played at a level of violence never before seen on the gridiron. Jones earned names like the “Secretary of Defense. Former head coach George Allen called Jones the Greatest Defensive End of Modern Football. Jones finished his career with the San Diego Chargers and Washington Redskins, respectively.
An 8-time Pro Bowler and a 5-time All-Pro selection, Jones is a member of the NFL’s 75th Anniversary team and the 1960’s All-NFL Team. The father of the quarterback sack, he also holds the two highest unofficial season sack totals, 26 in 1967 and 24 in 1968.
Jones was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1980.
The sack was coined by Jones because in his words, he wanted to stuff all quarterbacks into a sack and wail away on it with a baseball bat. The now outlawed head slap opened the way to an unofficial 194 career sacks. At 6’5” 272 lbs., a then lightening quick Jones explains the benefits of the head slap as only he can:
“To give myself an initial head start on the pass rush, in other words a extra step. Because anytime you go upside a man’s head … or a woman; they may have a tendency to blink they eyes or close they eyes. And that’s all I needed.