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Today in Sports History: 2/2 | Vince Lombardi Becomes Packers Head Coach

Today in sports history (1959), Vince Lombardi signed a five-year contract to become the Green Bay Packers head coach. The Packers were flailing, coming off their worst record in franchise history. Lombardi would provide an immediate turnaround, ultimately leading to five championships in just nine years.

Packers Go From Worst to First

Prior to 1959, the Green Bay Packers had seen very little success. Fans were disappointed and the league was beginning to wonder if keeping the team in small town Wisconsin was even a realistic possibility anymore.

After some success with the New York Giants and rejections from college programs such as Wake Forest and Notre Dame, Vince Lombardi would change football history by signing on the dotted line to become the head coach of the lowly Green Bay Packers.

In his very first year in 1959, he led a Packers squad who had gone 1-10-1 in the previous season to a 7-5 record, and never looked back. The very next year, they won the NFL West and made a run to the NFL Championship.

Since that 1960 season, there has never been a single game the Packers did not sell out.

Vince Lombardi Packers super bowl ii sports history
Credit: packers.com

Vince Lombardi Cements His Legacy

The 1961 season is really where the legend of Vince Lombardi starts to take shape. Five out of the following seven seasons would result in a championship. This included the first two Super Bowls to ever take place, in 1966 and 1967, where, as we know, the trophy would eventually be named in his honor.

Although he was only in Green Bay for nine years, his success and impact have been unparalleled by anyone else. Along with an astonishing 105-35-6 (.740) record, he has countless players who are now immortalized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the ultimate trophy in sports named in his honor, numerous quotes still used today, and an unforgettable image in his trench coat and fedora.

Packers fans and the organization alike have Vince Lombardi to thank for 60+ years of joy and success, and it all started on this day in sports history in 1959.

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