|Source:Wiley Studios- Vince Lombardi's commonsense|
Vince Lombardi, at the age of 45, when most pro football luminaries have made their mark and passed from the scene of a young man's game, was embarking on the dual adventure of being head coach and general manager of the Green Bay Packers.
His previous NFL experience consisted of five years as an assistant coach with the New York Giants. Amazingly, Vince basked in the limelight for only one decade. Cancer struck him down just as he seemingly was about to create a "second miracle," the rejuvenation of the Washington Redskins. In remarkably few years, Lombardi became the symbol of excellence for an entire sport. Vince Lombardi quotes and speeches are considered the holy grail of motivation and life purpose.
Vincent Thomas "Vince" Lombardi (June 11, 1913 – September 3, 1970) was an American football player, coach, and executive in the National Football League (NFL). He is best known as the head coach of the Green Bay Packers during the 1960s, where he led the team to three straight and five total NFL Championships in seven years, in addition to winning the first two Super Bowls following the 1966 and 1967 NFL seasons. The NFL's Super Bowl trophy is named in his honor. He was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1971, the year after his death. Lombardi, while considered by many to be the greatest coach in football history, is more significantly recognized as one of the greatest coaches and leaders in the history of any sport.
Lombardi began his coaching career as an assistant and later as a head coach at St. Cecilia High School in Englewood, New Jersey. He was an assistant coach at Fordham, at the United States Military Academy, and with the New York Giants before becoming a head coach for the Green Bay Packers from 1959 to 1967 and the Washington Redskins in 1969. He never had a losing season as a head coach in the NFL, compiling a regular season winning percentage of 72.8% (96–34–6), and 90% (9–1) in the postseason for an overall record of 105 wins, 35 losses, and 6 ties in the NFL.
Here are some of his famous and not so famous quotes and wisdom."
|Source:AZ Quotes- "What you got to have is faith and discipline when you're not a winner. Vince Lombardi · Inspirational ..."|
When I think of Vince Lombardi and his quotes, I think of a couple of things: commonsense where a lot of what he says really is just basic commonsense, but he believed in what he said and acted on it. The reasons why I believe commonsense is called commonsense because you don't have to be a genius to understand it or to come up with it, but you have to believe in it and the use it.
And the reasons why commonsense is repeated over and over, because we have so many people who don't believe in it, or don't actually understand it. It's seemed as old school and just doesn't fit in today's American culture, because it comes off a corny. There's no Hollywood pop culture flare to it and doesn't sound like something that today's so-called celebrities wouldn't believe in and certainly wouldn't quote themselves, because it sounds so corny and common.
And once something is put down as corny or old school in today's culture, its forgotten and pushed aside with people believing that it can't be true, because that's what people back in the day believed and that's how they talked and doesn't represent the modern culture.
The other thing that I think of when I think of Vince Lombardi is not really a thing, but a real man and human being in Richard Nixon: whatever you think of Richard Nixon and I have my own mixed feelings about him myself a lot of his own quotes and advice that he gave people in his speeches sound like things that Vince Lombardi could've written himself and as if Coach Lombardi was President Nixon's speechwriter or something. Not accusing Richard Nixon of plagiarizing, but he an Vince Lombardi did have similar speaking voices.
The whole Lombardi quote about its not a question of whether someone gets knocked down in life, but the question is whether you get back up or not: that sounds a lot like President Nixon's deepest valley quote when on the day he left the presidency in 1974: "that you'll never know what its like to be on the highest mountain, until you're in the deepest valley." That to reach the top, you have to pay the price for it even if that means getting knocked down in life.
The difference between Vince Lombardi and Dick Nixon when it came to commonsense is that Lombardi lived it and believed it. Nixon, learned the hard way to the point that it cost him his presidency about why you shouldn't be petty and hate others and how those flaws destroyed his presidency.
I'm going to give you my favorite quotes from Vince Lombardi and tell you what I thunk of them and you can do the same as well.
"Winning is not a sometime thing, it is an all time thing."
What I take for that is that you can't take winning for granted and then expect to be successful. That just doesn't go for football, but in life in general. Once you become complacent and overconfident is when you're at you most vulnerable, because that's when you slack off. But the better you prepare, the better you execute, and the harder and better you work, the better you'll do not just in football, but in life in general.
"Its not whether you get knocked down, it's whether you get back up."
I could go back to Richard Nixon's deepest valley quote on that: since all of us are human, none of us are perfect and because of that we all make mistakes, or just get beat by better opponents and have to deal with the consequences of those losses. Or lose people in our lives that are very close to us, or just get screwed over by people who want things for themselves and don't care if they have to hurt people in order to accomplish those goals. The question is do we learn from our mistakes and losses and use them to make us better people and not repeat those mistakes again and not lose the same way again. Or do we stay down and claim that life is unfair.
"Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection, we can achieve excellence."
This quote right here sounds more like Bill Walsh or Mike Holmgren ( two other NFL Hall of Fame head coaches ) than Richard Nixon: what Holmgren said about this, is that we should always strive for perfection knowing from the outset that we'll never accomplish that: which sort of sounds like a fools errand like a cat trying to catch his tail, or a man jumping from a bridge thinking he can fly by just flapping his arms. But what Coach Holmgren meant by that is what I believe Coach Lombardi meant by that as well: that we strive for perfection to make ourselves as good as we possibly can be. That you try to win every single football game that you play, not because you're going after a perfect season, ( necessarily ) but to win as many games as possible and to be as good as you can be. Which again is another good Lombardi life lesson as well.
In some ways I believe that Vince Lombardi could never be successful in the modern NFL, because the modern NFL is now more of an entertainment business than anything else and perhaps more like a Hollywood studio than major pro sports league, with a of players seeing themselves more as entertainers than pro athletes who more worried about their so-called brands and how they play in American culture in general and even view the NFL as one of their side business that they use to gain fame and use that to get other business opportunities for themselves. But then I look at Bill Belichick or even Bill Cowher from just 10-15 years ago and think maybe a Lombardi could succeed today, because those great coaches believe in the same things and get their players to believe in them as well.