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On This Date: Bill Parcells Quits Detroit Lions after Training Camp Practice

Bill Parcells walked out of Detroit Lions training camp, following a rigorous practice in the heat.

Bill Parcells made a reputation for himself as a hard-nosed, no-nonsense coach.

He was known for making things tough. 

As a former head coach for the New York Giants, New England Patriots, New York Jets and Dallas Cowboys, he won two Super Bowls and lost a third. Parcells is one of the more renowned coaches in NFL history.

Yet, on July 22, 1964, he found that football practice could be too much to handle at times.

Parcells was a seventh-round pick by the Detroit Lions in the previous draft, and he reported to camp with the rest of the rookies. An offensive guard, Parcells stood in at 6-foot-3 and 242 pounds.

Following a practice that included a scrimmage in 90-degree weather, Parcells became the first cut of the 1964 season, despite coach George Wilson not making the move himself.

Following the decision to leave, Parcells became the linebackers coach at Hastings College, before moving up the college ranks and later transitioning to the NFL.

His coaching career was outstanding, yet his playing career was rather brief and the antithesis of his hard-nosed coaching days. 

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New Lions head coach Dan Campbell will use lessons he learned from Parcells to relate to his players.

"The biggest thing for me that I would take away from Bill is just how to deal with players and personalities and things of that nature. I've said it before: Nobody is as good as Bill Parcells at motivating players," Campbell said via ESPN. "And, just the way he did it, he knew who needed a hug. He knew who needed a kick in the rear. He knew who needed to be challenged and who needed to be built up. To me, those are the things I most remember about Bill." 

With the humidity in the Metro Detroit area being elevated the past couple of weeks, it will be interesting to observe how Campbell & Co. handle the heat and when decisions are made to take practice indoors at the team's Allen Park practice facility. 


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