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Dr. Z on the Tatum hit.

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by PatsFanSince74, Apr 7, 2007.

  1. PatsFanSince74

    PatsFanSince74 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    With apoligies if this has already been posted (I looked and couldn't find it). You can find the entire text on SI.com. I shortened it.

    ...to my way of thinking, it was illegal. That was the era in which coaches at levels, pee wee on up, told their guys to "put a hat on him." They hit with their helmets....in those days players used the helmet to punish each other, and along with that philosophy went the desire to inflict maximum punishment on anyone in an unprotected or vulnerable position on the field. Which played right into Tatum's style.

    I saw the Patriots-Raiders game live. I saw replays of the play countless times. I don't believe that the tackle that took Stingley down was the hit that did the damage. I think it came when he was on the ground, or just about to hit it. That's when Tatum drilled him and he was paralyzed. An awful, vicious hit, but not uncommon in those days -- particularly by Tatum, generally conceded to be the hardest hitter of his era.

    Tatum never tried to speak to Stingley thereafter. He wrote a book, They Call Me Assassin, cashing in on the play. The idea of it gave me the creeps, but after all, when a guard dog is trained to kill, that's what it does, without remorse. The people toward whom I feel real animosity are the ones who actually went out and bought that book.
  2. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Only confirms my belief more and more, it was uncalled for and for him to have capitalized on it is wrong.. Tatum brings this to his grave.. Madden justifies what he did.
  3. MoLewisrocks

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    Tim Fox was on the field in Oakland and as a teamate of Darryl's (who played defense) he said on Felger's show this week he does not believe it was an illegal hit. What he does believe is it was not the kind of hit you like to see made in a pre season game, but that was the kind of player Tatum was - there was no pre season distinction with him.

    He also told the story again, as he did a year or so ago, of how the Patriots left to fly home and left not one staff member behind to see to Darryl's situation. John Madden went to the hospital immediately after the game, and the story that Tim heard was when he realized what they had done he called the airport and got them to relay a message to the Patriots plane to turn around and get a representative to the hospital to deal with their player. Fox said the pilot came on the intercom shortly after takeoff and said they were returning to SF to deal with a mechanical problem. They landed, and shortly thereafter took off again minus their assistant PR guy who then remained at the hospital until Darryl's situation was settled. Madden and his wife continued to visit the hospital daily until he was discharged.

    I think most players don't have a problem with the hit. It's Tatum's refusal to ever express any remorse that troubles them. I think Darryl probably felt the same way.
  4. PatsFanSince74

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    great perspective and I wasn't aware of the story you report.
  5. Patriot_in_NY

    Patriot_in_NY Rookie

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    Indeed........... That has always been my perspective. It wasn't so much the actual play (although you hate to see kind of violence in the pre-season with nothing on the line), as it was the behavior and attitude ever since that I took issue with.
  6. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #50 Jersey

    What do you mean by "Madden justifies what he did"? What who did? Madden or Tatum?

    Madden was a class act through it from what I am reading. Hell, Madden was more concerned about Stingley than the Patriots stafff. THAT should tell you something.

    As I hear this report about the Pats not having left anyone behind to be with Stingley, I am actually embarrassed. This says a LOT about the coaching staff and, honestly, about Fairbanks. But it also confirms what many of us knew about the Sullivans.
  7. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    I think all these things - the Patriots "skipping town" on Stingley, Tatum's refusal to properly apologize, the "he was just that kind of player" defense" - point to how uncomfortable catastrophic injury is to the people who are involved with football. Anything that in any way, shape or form makes them feel morally culpable for ruining someone else's life is pushed aside, because otherwise they'd be at a disadvantage when doing their jobs.

    Soldiers suffer profound psychological distress over events as random and inescapable as seeing a fellow soldier - or even enemy combatant - torn apart from an artillery shell fired blindly from five miles away. To be the sole acting agent in giving another football player paralysis... I can understand how Tatum became locked into that "assassin" persona as a way of celebrating, instead of doubting, the terrible outcome of his actions on the field.

    I am less understanding how the Patriots could just "skip town" on Stingley. "The Patriots," by which I mean the coaching and administrative staffs, are not just one person like Tatum is, nor were they as inexorably tied to the hit as Tatum. That no one made themselves available to a friend or fellow member of the organization is scandilous.
  8. psychoPat

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    Whenever i think of the Sullivans
    ... i thank our lucky stars for Bob Kraft.
  9. DarrylS

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    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sport...433.story?coll=chi-news-hed&?track=sto-relcon

    Madden was upset that initial reports of Stingley's death Thursday had Tatum hitting Stingley from behind.

    "He didn't hit him from behind," Madden said. "The ball was thrown, it was a slant by the goal line. Darryl Stingley was coming in, Jack was sitting in the middle. He made the reaction he has been taught all his life to make.

    "There was a collision, and Darryl was in the air and put his head down a little in the collision. It was an accident that happened. There was no one to fault."
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2007
  10. wdkantro2

    wdkantro2 Rookie

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    I never thought the problem was whether if it was legal or not, but the fact that Tatum handled it like a jerk afterwards. Even if it was completely unintentional, why can't you just at least say "I feel bad about what happened."
  11. PatsFanInVa

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    Doesn't Dr. Z own Chrysler now?
  12. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Amen. BTW--could you even imagine a full plane taking off if, God forbid, the Pats had another scare like that?
  13. PatsFanSince74

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    i guess on the hit itself people will disagree. it's either, as Madden tells it, that Tatum "put his head down a little" after the collision and it was an accident or, as Dr. Z saw it, he intentionally tried to hurt him with his helmet as they fell to the ground. i saw it in the latter fashion but am the first to admit that my perception is colored by the emotion and anger i felt at the time and by the fact that i had no respect for tatum (or the raiders) going into the game to begin with.

    no disagreement on Tatum's word games, attitude and behavior after the event though.

    and no disagreement that the patriots behaved terribly in the hours immediately thereafter. can you imagine Brady and Seymour letting that happen to a teammate?
  14. psychoPat

    psychoPat Role Player PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The same excellent Chicago Trib story
    reports that Stingley, in a long-ago interview, credits John Madden
    with saving his life
    by drawing attention to a malfunctioning aspirator which was about to asphyxiate him.

    Not only Lifesaving merit badge for Madden ... but shows that
    everyone in hospital or under serious medical care needs a third-party watchdog and ombudsman - preferably a loved one!

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