Typical Gil Brandt.
If he isn’t talking about football on SiriusXM NFL Radio or writing about it for NFL.com, he’s busy researching it one way or another.
‘I was going back out to the Cowboy facility to try to see all the things that we did with the computer back in 1961 and ’62’
And it was while he was driving home from the facility of the Dallas Cowboys, with whom he built an iconic career as a player-personnel chief, that Brandt received a phone call Thursday informing him that he had been chosen as a contributor candidate — along with Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen — for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
“I almost drove off the highway,” Brandt told Pat Kirwan and David Moulton on Movin’ The Chains. “Ironically, I was doing something that Pat’s very familiar with. I was going back out to the Cowboy facility in the morning to try to see all of the things that we did with the computer back in 1961 and ’62. I was headed back and (HOF President) Mr. (David) Baker called me and informed the news.”
Brandt believed that scouting shouldn’t be limited to those who played college football
The next step comes Feb. 2, the day before Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta, when the Hall’s selection committee meets to choose the induction class of 2019.
Brandt was well ahead of his time when it came to finding players who contributed to the Cowboys’ “America’s Team” fame that included a record 20 consecutive winning seasons from 1966 to 1985 and 18 trips to the postseason. He believed that scouting shouldn’t be limited to those who played college football. He widened the lens to include a wide variety of athletes.
‘You can bring the raw product to them and then they have to develop the player, and Coach (Tom) Landry and his staff were exceptional’
“One time, when we played in the Super Bowl, we had five basketball players who never played a game of college football on our team,” Brandt said. “But whenever you do something like that, you need to have a coach or a coaching staff that’s going to take the time to develop a player. You can bring the raw product to them and then they have to develop the player, and Coach (Tom) Landry and his staff were exceptional.
“Whenever you do something great, there’s other people involved and (General Manager) Tex Schramm supplied the money, because it was very costly, what we did. And Coach Landry fell in line with everything and so it was a great situation. It’s just great to be one place for 30 years and the end result is, hopefully, what happens at the end of this year at the Super Bowl when they vote.”
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