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June 24 in Pats History: Lin Dawson

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jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
Today in Patriots History
Lin Dawson


Happy 62nd birthday to Lin Dawson
Born June 24, 1959 in Norfolk, Virginia
Patriot TE, 1981-1990; uniform #87
Pats 8th round (212th overall) pick of the 1981 draft, from North Carolina State




James Linwood Dawson was drafted after Russ Francis abruptly retired following the 1980 season. He saw little playing time as a rookie when Don Hasselbeck became the starter, but had an equal share of playing time and receptions along with Hasselbeck in the strike-shortened '82 season. At that point Ron Meyer felt confident enough in Dawson's performance to make him the starter in 1983, trading Hasselbeck to the Raiders.

Dawson's best year from an offensive production standpoint was in 1984 when he was third on the team with 39 receptions, with four touchdowns and 427 receiving yards. Unfortunately Dawson sustained a ruptured tendon in his left knee on the first play of Super Bowl 20; the freak non-contact injury caused him to miss the entire 1986 season. He also missed the first month of the 1988 season due to a hamstring injury. Once the hammy was fully healed Lin seemed to be back on track with a two-touchdown game against the Bears in week nine, but Dawson suffered a season ending broken ankle the following week against Miami.

Over the course of his career Dawson played in 105 games with 75 starts, with eight touchdowns. He also appeared in five playoff games for the Pats and had a 13-yard touchdown against the Raiders in the '85-86 playoffs. Lin Dawson is the tight end on the Patriots all-decade team for the eighties. He is now the athletic director at Clark University in Atlanta.




April 29, 1981:
Dick Steinberg post-draft assessment

Steinberg, who ran the draft show at Schaefer Stadium Tuesday and Wednesday, labeled the Patriots' draft as a '7' on a scale of 1-to-10. New England failed to get a blue chip defensive lineman but did upgrade their team at several positions, most noticeably on the offensive line.​

The Patriots spent the second day doing what most teams do -- picking players who can add some backup support. They chose a punter for the third straight year -- Ken Naber of Stanford -- who promises to give Mike Hubach a battle for his job.​

Their other Wednesday picks were wide receiver Ken Toler of Mississippi, tight end Lin Dawson of North Carolina State, quarterback Brian Buckley of Harvard, and Cris Crissy of Princeton, a receiver-slotback projected as a safety.​

'Every player we drafted should play in the NFL, but not necessarily with the Patriots,' Steinberg said. 'The thing that really hurt us was not having a third-round choice. We filled a glaring need in the offensive line, added a running back and depth in special teams, and we strengthened our linebacking and defensive-line corps even though we didn't get a good pass-rusher.'​

Coach Ron Erhardt said that he thought the team he takes to camp this summer will be better than last year's -- if all the un-signed players (Horace Ivory, Rod Shoate, Don Hasselbeck are the biggies) have come to terms.​

When asked about the team's prospects, Erhardt cracked, 'Anything over .500 is a super job of coaching.'​


Aug 25, 1981:
Training Camp Notes

Terry Nelson, a former star with the Los Angeles Rams, was among 10 players dropped by the New England Patriots. Nelson, a tight end who was released by the Rams before training camp, was signed by the Patriots shortly after Russ Francis, one of the league's best tight ends, decided to retire. But last year's backup, Don Hasselbeck, recently ended a contract holdout and reported to the team, and Lin Dawson, a 1981 draft choice, has apparently won a roster spot.​


Jan 27, 1986:

New England Patriots tight end Lin Dawson sustained a ruptured tendon in his left knee on the first play and was lost for the rest of the game. He was carried from the field on a stretcher. The Patriots went to reserve tight end Derrick Ramsey.​



J Lin Dawson was appointed Director of Athletics by Clark Atlanta University President Ronald A. Johnson on November 18, 2015 to provide visionary leadership for the Department of Athletics. In two short years, the Department is well on its way to becoming a stellar program.​

“Our goals are driven by the simple philosophy of winning championships, graduating student-athletes, and developing leaders,” he said. “These three pillars set the tone for all we do and think.”​

A former professional football player, Dawson brings more than 20 years of administrative, academic and entrepreneurial experience to CAU. Prior to his arrival at CAU, Dawson served as Director of Athletics at North Carolina Central University, Grambling State University, Elizabeth City State University, and as Chief Operating Officer for the National Consortium for Academics and Sports at Disney’s Wide World of Sports. In addition, Dawson gained senior-level administrative experience as an Associate Athletic Director at North Carolina State University and Virginia Commonwealth University.​

At Clark Atlanta University, he oversees the University's NCAA Division II athletic program, including, but not limited to, compliance, budgeting, operations, advancement, student-athlete recruitment and professional staffing and development.​


 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
Today in Patriots History
Shaun Ellis


Happy 44th birthday to Shaun Ellis
Born June 24, 1977 in Anderson, SC
Patriot DE, 2011; uniform #94
Signed as an unrestricted free agent on August 7, 2011




After 11 seasons with the Jets that included two Pro Bowls, the Pats signed 34 year old MeShaunda Pizarrur Ellis just after the start of the 2011 training camp, on the same day they signed Andre Carter and re-signed Gerard Warren. While the latter two were productive, Ellis never lived up to his $4 million contract, with his age catching up to him. Over the season he played in 14 games with ten starts, recording just one sack, seven tackles and seven assists.










And when Belichick burned the Jets to take the Patriots' job in 2000, New England was forced to fork over a first-round draft pick, which the Jets used to select Ellis.​

Now, Belichick and Ellis get a crack at their own payback. Last season, Ellis apparently wanted a long-term deal to stay in New York, but the Jets weren't willing to extend him. Ellis, who turned 34 in June, had 4.5 sacks in 2010, which was his lowest total since 2005, but he might have been their best defensive player in the playoff victory over the Patriots. With some added motivation, the Patriots are hoping he can return the favor.​

Ellis will join a rotation along the defensive line with Vince Wilfork, Albert Haynesworth, Mike Wright, Ron Brace, Myron Pryor, Brandon Deaderick, Mark Anderson, Kyle Love and several others who are attempting to make the team. Jermaine Cunningham and Eric Moore have also played on the line in 4-3 fronts.​

Ellis can play at end in the 4-3 and 3-4, and that versatility should give him ample playing time in the Patriots' ever-changing defensive system.​

He's a solid player, and there's little doubt that he can help New England. By sticking it to the Jets in the process, it will be an added bonus.​



Worst offseason decision: Not drafting or signing a bona fide pass rusher.​

Three of the four positions on the line have been fine, but the left defensive end spot in both base and sub packages is a big reason why this team can’t rush the passer consistently, and that’s killing the defense. Shaun Ellis has played like he’s 45. Mark Anderson is limited. Rob Ninkovich has played too many snaps between linebacker and rush end. Cunningham has been MIA. Mike Wright couldn’t have been counted on because of his unfortunate concussion history.​

Still hard to believe the team didn’t take a swing at a pass rusher early in the draft (hello, Jabaal Sheard or Brooks Reed). It has gotten so bad that when the Giants were driving, down, 13-10, Brandon Deaderick was the left end. Seriously?​
 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
Today in Patriots History
More June 24 Birthdays


Happy 75th birthday to Randy Edmunds
Born June 24, 1946 in Washington, Georgia
Patriot OLB, 1971; uniform #51
Signed as a free agent on August 25, 1971




George Randall Edmunds was drafted in the eighth round by the Dolphins in 1968 and started at outside linebacker for two seasons in Miami. Edmunds played in all 14 games with the Patriots in 1971, almost exclusively on special teams. The Georgia Tech grad finished up his NFL career in '72 with three games for the Baltimore Colts.




Happy 51st birthday to Carlos Yancy
Born June 24, 1970 in Sarasota, FL
Patriot safety, 1995; uniform #40
Pats 7th round (234th overall) pick of the 1995 draft, from Georgia

Carlos Yancy appeared in four games for the Pats in '95. Professional sports is part of his family history; his father Hugh was an infielder for the Chicago White Sox in the seventies.

Since 2003 Carlos has been giving back to society, working at the Goodwill in his hometown of Sarasota Florida, where he assists people with some roadblocks to finding jobs and careers.





He went to school and played football at Riverview High School and the University of Georgia, before enjoying a brief period playing for the New England Patriots under Coach Parcells. Upon his return to Sarasota, he worked with the Family Counseling Center under a pilot program of then-Governor Jeb Bush; this program privatized services for children and families. His next job was as an ESE (English as a Second Language) teacher at Booker Middle School.​

He had dreams of starting his own nonprofit program and decided to stop into the Goodwill Selby Newtown Job Connection office to see about a job and getting his "nonprofit feet" wet. During his orientation, he scrapped the plans to start his own organization realizing that, with Goodwill, he would have instant credibility and be working to help community members with jobs and housing, which he agreed were critical needs.​

The job-seekers Yancy works with typically have some kind of barrier to employment, whether it's a shortage of education or job skills training, a past criminal record, or a disability. He also serves older adults seeking to enter or re-enter the workforce, and veterans, who face many challenges to reintegrating into the community. His job involves resume assistance, arranging transportation for people who are without their own, securing resources - perhaps clothes or prescription glasses - necessary for success, and job and life coaching to help job-seekers set and reach their goals. And he loves all of it.​

"One of the things that I love about Goodwill is that it gives me the opportunity to assist the neediest in our community," he said. "I encourage others in leadership roles to have patience and compassion, and to treat others like you would like to be treated if the shoe was on the other foot."​


You might think that playing professional football under a coach who is reportedly as tough and skilled as Bill Parcells would be simultaneously the most challenging and best job one could have but, for Carlos Yancy, his current post takes the prize. The 14-year employee of Goodwill Manasota takes great pride in his work as a career development facilitator – each community member seeking assistance offers a new opportunity for a touchdown dance.​



Happy 33rd birthday to Ishmaa'ily Kitchen
Born June 29, 1988 in Youngstown, Ohio
Patriot NT, 2015; uniform #70
Signed as a free agent on December 16, 2015




Ishmaa'ily Yuwsha Kitchen was originally signed by Baltimore as an undrafted rookie out of Kent State in 2012, and appeared in 40 games with the Browns from 2012-2014. The Patriots signed the 6-1, 334lb nose tackle after their week 14 victory at Houston when Dominique Easley was placed on injured reserve. Kitchen was a healthy scratch for the next game versus Tennessee, then released to make room for RB Steven Jackson. In the following game the Patriot defense surrendered 143 rushing yards and 428 total yards in an overtime loss to the Jets, and Kitchen was re-signed. He appeared in the week 17 loss at Miami, then was again a healthy scratch in both playoff games. Defensive linemen Kitchen, Easley and Chris Jones were all released by New England two weeks prior to the 2016 draft.



Two days after releasing former first-round pick Dominique Easley, the New England Patriots have parted ways with two other defensive tackles.​

Chris Jones and Ishmaa'ily Kitchen, both projected to be on the roster bubble, were cut Friday.​

Kitchen, a wide body in the middle, was brought on late last year for depth.​

Currently, the Patriots have Malcom Brown, Terrrance Knighton, Alan Branch, Markus Kuhn, Frank Kearse and Joe Vellano at defensive tackle. The team may look to add an interior defensive lineman in the draft. The position ranks among the Pats' top draft needs.​




Happy 31st birthday to Earl Watford
Born June 24, 1990 in Philadelphia
Patriot guard, 2020 practice squad; uniform #77
Signed to the practice squad on December 15, 2020


Watford, 30, is a veteran of seven NFL seasons with the Arizona Cardinals (2013-17), Cleveland Browns (2018) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2019). He originally entered the NFL as a fourth-round draft pick (116th overall) by the Arizona Cardinals out of James Madison in the 2013 NFL Draft. The 6-foot-4, 295-pounder has played in 71 career regular season games with 25 starts and one postseason contest as a reserve. Last year with Tampa Bay, Watford played in 15 games with four starts – three at guard and one at tackle-eligible tight end.​

The Patriots released Watford two weeks later, with defensive tackle Nick Thurman and inside linebacker Cassh Maluia reverting to the practice squad after the 38-9 loss to the Buffalo Bills at Gillette Stadium on Monday Night Football.




June 27, 1973: Pats sign free agent John Tanner

The Cocoa, Florida native had an atypical path to the NFL. He joined the army and fought in Viet Nam after being expelled from his high school due to an altercation with a teacher. After returning he spent two years in a junior college, then transferred to Tennessee Tech, where he played basketball. It was not until his senior year that he played organized football for the first time in his life as a senior - becoming a two-way starter at defensive end and tight end, and was named the team's MVP. Tanner played defensive end for two seasons with the Pats, where he became the franchise's original Mike Vrabel: the first primarily defensive player to score a touchdown on offense in Patriots history, and the only player in team history to do so until Vrabel perfected that versatility in 2002.




Other pro football players born on this date with New England area connections:

- Dave Lapham, 69 (June 24, 1952); the Wakefield MA native played guard for Cincinnati from 1974-83, then signed a 10-year personal services contract with The Donald to jump to the USFL. Since 1985 Lapham has been the color analyst for Bengals radio broadcasts, with his style described as "a combination of Tommy Heinsohn with the Celtics and Jerry Remy with the Red Sox in Boston".

- Bill Rogers (6/24/1913-4/30/1977); this Westborough High School and Bridgton Academy alum was not a long distance runner, but was a tackle with the Lions between 1938 and 1944.

- Erik Storz, 46 (June 24, 1975); the linebacker from Boston College spent three years with the Jaguars, and is now a senior mortgage broker for KeyBank Real Estate in New York City.




Some pro football notables born on this date:
- Antoine Winfield (1977, 44); CB had 27 interceptions with the Bills and Vikings.

- Mitch Berger (1972, 49) two-time Pro Bowler averaged 43 yards on his 847 career punts.

- Curtis Painter (1985, 36); went 0-8 with 50% more interceptions than touchdowns in Indy's 2011 'Suck for Luck' tanked season.
 

captain stone

Hall of Fame Poster

"Patriots’ best, worst at the midway point - The Boston Globe

The best and worst of the first half for the Patriots.
www.bostonglobe.com
www.bostonglobe.com

Worst offseason decision: Not drafting or signing a bona fide pass rusher.​
Three of the four positions on the line have been fine, but the left defensive end spot in both base and sub packages is a big reason why this team can’t rush the passer consistently, and that’s killing the defense. Shaun Ellis has played like he’s 45. Mark Anderson is limited. Rob Ninkovich has played too many snaps between linebacker and rush end. Cunningham has been MIA. Mike Wright couldn’t have been counted on because of his unfortunate concussion history.​
Still hard to believe the team didn’t take a swing at a pass rusher early in the draft (hello, Jabaal Sheard or Brooks Reed). It has gotten so bad that when the Giants were driving, down, 13-10, Brandon Deaderick was the left end. Seriously?"​



Greg Bedard absolutely nails it...Shaun Ellis fukcing sucked here.
 

Pape

In the Starting Line-Up
Today in Patriots History
Lin Dawson


Happy 62nd birthday to Lin Dawson
Born June 24, 1959 in Norfolk, Virginia
Patriot TE, 1981-1990; uniform #87
Pats 8th round (212th overall) pick of the 1981 draft, from North Carolina State




James Linwood Dawson was drafted after Russ Francis abruptly retired following the 1980 season. He saw little playing time as a rookie when Don Hasselbeck became the starter, but had an equal share of playing time and receptions along with Hasselbeck in the strike-shortened '82 season. At that point Ron Meyer felt confident enough in Dawson's performance to make him the starter in 1983, trading Hasselbeck to the Raiders.

Dawson's best year from an offensive production standpoint was in 1984 when he was third on the team with 39 receptions, with four touchdowns and 427 receiving yards. Unfortunately Dawson sustained a ruptured tendon in his left knee on the first play of Super Bowl 20; the freak non-contact injury caused him to miss the entire 1986 season. He also missed the first month of the 1988 season due to a hamstring injury. Once the hammy was fully healed Lin seemed to be back on track with a two-touchdown game against the Bears in week nine, but Dawson suffered a season ending broken ankle the following week against Miami.

Over the course of his career Dawson played in 105 games with 75 starts, with eight touchdowns. He also appeared in five playoff games for the Pats and had a 13-yard touchdown against the Raiders in the '85-86 playoffs. Lin Dawson is the tight end on the Patriots all-decade team for the eighties. He is now the athletic director at Clark University in Atlanta.




April 29, 1981:
Dick Steinberg post-draft assessment

Steinberg, who ran the draft show at Schaefer Stadium Tuesday and Wednesday, labeled the Patriots' draft as a '7' on a scale of 1-to-10. New England failed to get a blue chip defensive lineman but did upgrade their team at several positions, most noticeably on the offensive line.​

The Patriots spent the second day doing what most teams do -- picking players who can add some backup support. They chose a punter for the third straight year -- Ken Naber of Stanford -- who promises to give Mike Hubach a battle for his job.​

Their other Wednesday picks were wide receiver Ken Toler of Mississippi, tight end Lin Dawson of North Carolina State, quarterback Brian Buckley of Harvard, and Cris Crissy of Princeton, a receiver-slotback projected as a safety.​

'Every player we drafted should play in the NFL, but not necessarily with the Patriots,' Steinberg said. 'The thing that really hurt us was not having a third-round choice. We filled a glaring need in the offensive line, added a running back and depth in special teams, and we strengthened our linebacking and defensive-line corps even though we didn't get a good pass-rusher.'​

Coach Ron Erhardt said that he thought the team he takes to camp this summer will be better than last year's -- if all the un-signed players (Horace Ivory, Rod Shoate, Don Hasselbeck are the biggies) have come to terms.​

When asked about the team's prospects, Erhardt cracked, 'Anything over .500 is a super job of coaching.'​


Aug 25, 1981:
Training Camp Notes

Terry Nelson, a former star with the Los Angeles Rams, was among 10 players dropped by the New England Patriots. Nelson, a tight end who was released by the Rams before training camp, was signed by the Patriots shortly after Russ Francis, one of the league's best tight ends, decided to retire. But last year's backup, Don Hasselbeck, recently ended a contract holdout and reported to the team, and Lin Dawson, a 1981 draft choice, has apparently won a roster spot.​


Jan 27, 1986:

New England Patriots tight end Lin Dawson sustained a ruptured tendon in his left knee on the first play and was lost for the rest of the game. He was carried from the field on a stretcher. The Patriots went to reserve tight end Derrick Ramsey.​



J Lin Dawson was appointed Director of Athletics by Clark Atlanta University President Ronald A. Johnson on November 18, 2015 to provide visionary leadership for the Department of Athletics. In two short years, the Department is well on its way to becoming a stellar program.​

“Our goals are driven by the simple philosophy of winning championships, graduating student-athletes, and developing leaders,” he said. “These three pillars set the tone for all we do and think.”​

A former professional football player, Dawson brings more than 20 years of administrative, academic and entrepreneurial experience to CAU. Prior to his arrival at CAU, Dawson served as Director of Athletics at North Carolina Central University, Grambling State University, Elizabeth City State University, and as Chief Operating Officer for the National Consortium for Academics and Sports at Disney’s Wide World of Sports. In addition, Dawson gained senior-level administrative experience as an Associate Athletic Director at North Carolina State University and Virginia Commonwealth University.​

At Clark Atlanta University, he oversees the University's NCAA Division II athletic program, including, but not limited to, compliance, budgeting, operations, advancement, student-athlete recruitment and professional staffing and development.​

I have always wondered if XX could have turned out differently (maybe the Pate Win, or more likely we lose instead of getting humiliated) if Lin Dawson wasn't injured on the very first play ... He wasn't a game changer offensively but iirc he was a very good to great blocking TE ... and lord knows the offense needed better blocking that day... With Berry abandoning the run from the get go, every fraction of a second was needed...

 
Last edited:

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
I have always wondered if XX could have turned out differently (maybe the Pate Win, or more likely we lose instead of getting humiliated) if Lin Dawson wasn't injured on the very first play ... He wasn't a game changer offensively but iirc he was a very good to great blocking TE ... and lord knows the offense needed better blocking that day... With Berry abandoning the run from the get go, every fraction of a second was needed...

Yeah, I feel as though the Bears still would have won - the NFL as a whole had yet to figure out the kryptonite to the 46 defense - but I agree that his presence would have made the team much more competitive. Grogan would have been a better choice than Eason against their pass rush as well.

By the same vein I firmly believe that the loss of Stephen Neal to a knee injury in the second quarter of the super bowl against the Giants had a huge negative impact, overlooked by most people. Had he been healthy (he was already dealing with a shoulder injury) that could have been enough to change the outcome, in my opinion.
 

captain stone

Hall of Fame Poster
I have always wondered if XX could have turned out differently (maybe the Pate Win, or more likely we lose instead of getting humiliated) if Lin Dawson wasn't injured on the very first play ... He wasn't a game changer offensively but iirc he was a very good to great blocking TE ... and lord knows the offense needed better blocking that day... With Berry abandoning the run from the get go, every fraction of a second was needed...


I've also thought about that...And if Eason hits Morgan/Morgan doesn't drop the EZ pass on the very next play...Or if Don Blackmon doesn't drop an EASY Pick-6 on the next series...Thank Ganja that the 49ers destroyed Horse Mouth & the Donkeys by an even worse score a couple of years later...
 

captain stone

Hall of Fame Poster
Yeah, I feel as though the Bears still would have won - the NFL as a whole had yet to figure out the kryptonite to the 46 defense - but I agree that his presence would have made the team much more competitive. Grogan would have been a better choice than Eason against their pass rush as well.

By the same vein I firmly believe that the loss of Stephen Neal to a knee injury in the second quarter of the super bowl against the Giants had a huge negative impact, overlooked by most people. Had he been healthy (he was already dealing with a shoulder injury) in my opinion that could have been enough to change the outcome, in my opinion.

Yep...The right side of the OL - Hochstein & OxyKaczur - were a fukcing abomination for the rest of the game.
 

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