“When it’s third-and-10, you can take the milk drinkers and I’ll take the whiskey drinkers every time.” – Max McGee
Max McGee was one of the most colorful personalities in NFL history. McGee was known to break a curfew or nine. At one point when he faced a $1K fine if he missed bed check again, coach Vince Lombardi told him, ‘if you find something worth $1,000, call me and I’ll go with you.’
And yes, as Dan Lauria pointed out as we swapped Lombardi stories the other day, that quote is cleaned up a little bit.
McGee’s greatest feat happened prior to Super Bowl I. McGee was at the end of his career and rarely played in 1966. And seeing that Los Angeles was one of his favorite towns, McGee slipped out after bed check and didn’t return until morning.
McGee didn’t even have his helmet on the sidelines when Lombardi summoned him to replace Boyd Dowler who separated his shoulder early in the game. Wearing the helmet of a lineman and fighting blurry vision (the sun will do that to you after a night on the town), McGee would go on to score the first touchdown in Super Bowl history on a nifty one-handed grab and finished with seven receptions for 138 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
McGee died in 2007. His legend lives on.
Adam Rank is an old man in a young man’s body. Follow him on Twitter @adamrank