Football Hall of Fame announces inaugural excellence awards

CANTON, Ohio (AP) — The late Broncos offensive line coach Alex Gibbs and longtime NFL public relations steward Joe Browne are among the inaugural winners of the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Awards of Excellence.

The program was created to recognize significant off-the-field contributors to football. The categories are: assistant coaches, athletic trainers, equipment managers and public relations personnel.

In the assistant coaches category, Gibbs was honored along with Jimmy Raye, Terry Robiske, Fritz Shurmer and Ernie Zampese. Browne was joined by Jim Saccomano, Charlie Dayton, Joe Gordon and Gary Wright in the public relations personnel category.

Also honored were former athletic trainers George Anderson, Otho Davis, John Omohundro, Jerry Rhea and Fred Zamberletti and ex-equipment managers Sid Brooks, Ed Carroll, Tony Parisi, Dan “Chief” Simmons and Whitey Zimmerman.

“These 20 outstanding assistant coaches, athletic trainers, equipment managers and public relations personnel not only helped to determine results on the field, but they also helped to promote the game’s growth, safety and popularity over several decades of devotion to their teams and to the National Football League,” said Hall of Fame President Jim Porter.

The winners will be honored during the 2022 enshrinement week in Canton, Ohio, and their names will be on display at the Hall of Fame Museum.

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