Huddle Up with Gus
Huddle Up with Gus

Episode 151 · 4 months ago

Huddle Up With Gus: Ken Anderson

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Get Big Game Predictions with Coach Ken Anderson

Welcome to what surely will be a doozy of a match up. Brian here. Sports Fans, whether your game is on the Gridiron, at the diamond or on the links, we can only say get up off your seats and get ready for some real action. Welcome to this week's huddle up with us, fifteen year NFL quarterback Gus Bar Rot. Passion for sports has taken him on the field and behind the benches. Playing for seven NFL franchises with one hundred fourteen TD's under his belt, Gust knows who the players are and how the Games are. One if every day get to hang out with an Henna quarterback up old k sports fans from the decked out and plush sixteen forty one digital studios, it's kickoff time, so snap your ten straps on and get ready to huddle up with us. Everyone. Welcome to another episode of Huddle up with Gus. I'm your host, gust for out, fifteen year NFL quarterback. I want to welcome you to the show. Thanks for joining me. You can check me out at huddle up with gustcom or wherever you listen to your favorite podcast. So this week it's Super Bowl Week. And I couldn't ask for a better guests to come on the show than one of my old coaches who coached me in Cincinnati, but also he played in a super bowl. He is one of the most adored players ever to come out of this with the Cincinnati Bangles, and we'll get into a lot of that. But joining me today is my old quarterback coach, should be in the hall of fame, or and Ken Anderson just had an incredible NFL career. Coach, how are you doing and thanks for joining me. Well, I'm really doing good. You know, I've been having some back issues and finally is this decided it was time for surgeon, which had a really scared me when they talk about that. I had a great neural surgeon and Cincinnati and from the moment I woke up I haven't been in any pain. I'm walking around now and still got to kind of take it easy, you know, a little bit, but getting better every day and it's just like I say, it's nice to be pain free. And you know, I know you're up in Pittsburgh. I tried to follow a law student against the S and eight steeters defense and the lawyer said the statute of limitations that run out, because I think they were part of the caused by back issues. Yeah, they just called Jack Lambert and said, Hey, you got to come meet me in the bar and we'll see what happens. Take me down and you win the lawsuit, right. Yeah, yeah, it's kind of how's everything was handled with the steelers. But Hey, I want to start to show how I usually started everything. To go back, you were you were from Batavia, Illinois. Is that how you say it? Yeah, Yep. And you know, I wanted to ask you because I know you had some incredible friends and friendships growing up, but what was the first time you remember where you fell in love with sports? Oh, really, at an early age. You know, we had a neat little league park, so I started playing Little League Baseball, you know, at eight my dad coached the team. We we played. You know, high school was was big there. I can remember my my uncle's like my older brother, you know, he was twelve when I was born and my mom and dad finished raising him after the parents had passed away. But going to his high school games and then I still remember sitting in the bleachers. I sit on the actually you put your feet so the seat in front of me was like a little desk Andy Peeping score of all the Games and you know, we didn't have anything organized, you know, until junior high. But you know, for great school we'd walk across town to a little great school. We had basketball practice every Saturday, depending on what's your ages were right. And if it was baseball season, we're playing in the backyard and we got that and then we're onto the tennis courts were just a couple blocks away, and and then we're playing on the high school football field, you know, where you go to the fifty yard line and if you pulled one and went into seats as a home run, and you know, we just we just did, you know, everything growing up and it was really neat because my dad was the the High School Custodian. So if we ever needed to get into Varsity Gym, I've had a lot of friends. Can Your Dad let us in this Sunday and we just go there and and then did it all the time, whatever it was in season. You know, I don't think anybody picked out a sport and that that was the same way in high school. You know, if you want to play football, you had to go off for Spring Sport and got for Tracker Baseball. If you want to play basketball or wrestling, you had to walk for football across country. That's kind of the way that the coaches, you know, kept the numbers up because, you know, if you're our football coach, also called, you know, coach wrestling. So there was a right and that, you know, you just did and I think that was a great way to grow up because I think of all the you know, I end up playing football, but but all the things in basketball help me with my footwork in baseball. And then I was a catcher in a short stop in baseball, so I got a great release, you know, because as a cash you want to throw it over into the balls that tailing off you runner up, and playing short stop you got used to throw it in a lot of different a angles depending what the play dicted to.

So, you know, all those different things, you know, helped me become a better football player and I'm sorry that the kids don't get that experience today. Oh No, they don't get an experience like we had. I did the same thing growing up. Drad your bike, go get all your buddies in the in the town you lived in and you go play football, basketball, baseball. We'd break into the you know, our football field had a ten foot chain leage fence around it and I can remember there was one spot we all climbed over and that's when we play our games on Sunday before the steelers. Oh Yeah, Oh, yeah, yeah, so you had some incredible kids that you grew up with. Danissell play in the NBA. You had von Haa, fired vom hum. Yeah, yeah, it was then baseball, right. Yeah, that Dan was my next door while. Our backyards of button up and he was a year old than I am. So we had some pretty good basketball teams when I was in high school. Imagine, you know, we were a town about tenzero. I had a hundred and twenty five in my graduating class. Ask, but we could kind of play with with everybody if they would have had a little more support. And of course goes on the University of Kentucky and and I remember, you know, I'm gonna I went to dog a stand and after my sophomore year our head coach left to go to the other August standard, which was a step up and son thing what I and I've had a couple pretty good years. And Dan said they had just got a new football coach down. There was Johnny Ray, came from Notre Dame. He said, I can get you down here, get you a scholarship. And then my uncle. My uncle had gone because I'm paying my own way. My folks couldn't help me out. And you know, although it wasn't as nearly as much for a private school today, it was still substantial. Yeah, and then my uncle went to northern Illinois and he said, Hey, they'll take you here, you'll get a full rhyde. I'm sell, this is the way to go. And then that's spring. An old scout from the Green Bay packers, I think his name was Lild Blackburn, came by and he said, Kenny, stay where you're at, and so I decided to stay there. And you know, I end up but I you know, I started on the Barsity four years in football. I start on the Bar city three years in basketball. I did not play my senior year. You know, I had to join the the army reserve. That my lottery number back in those days was very low. I was going to go after graduation and I thought I'd get a chance and that a lot of the proteas are saying. You get in on your own and we can get you where you want to. So a buddy of mine got me in a unit and Juliet, Illinois and sometimes after Static Football Games and picked me up and drive me home so I can go to the the reserve meeting on Sundays. And so I dropped out a school after the fall quarter my senior year so I could be ready to go on active duty for the army. And for some reason I didn't go. And then the draft was in January. The NFL draft in those days was in January. In the bagels drafted me and I moved down there and by the time I went from one state to another, took the paperwork a while to get caught up with me, let's say. And so it's in the middle of my rookie year and I'm not starting. Virsion was the starter, and I get my notice for active duty and they only carried two quarterbacks in those days. One is the forty man roster. And so Bill Walsh calls many stay listen, you're going in the game Sunday. He said. The first time you take a hit, laid there for the doctors come out and cut you off. We're going to put you in the hospital to your date passes and then they'll recycling. It's after the season and luckily we got a one of our senators know how I got a hold of somebody in the Pentagon and got me to lay till after the season and then, and then we had that was Byron Bonhof that that got me in. And he was in the days of seaver and cous but all the the the miracle mets, all the young guys. Yeah, he was. He was one of he was a first round draft choice. He was one of those young gun arms and the year that they all went up to the big leagues he was on his six months active duty for basic training and they came back and they tried to rush him through a delayed spring any for him to get him up with the big club with all those other guys and throughout his arms we never made it to the big lakes. So I always got back for Barron any of the army. You know that you kind of you know, costing his chance. Yeah, yeah, so you've had you had some credible and then Craig Sager. I read that you were friends with him as well. Yeah, he was younger than I was and everybody's sports up there and his dad was an advertising and he had one of the only in round pools in Patatia. Yeah, everybody went to that House and it is dad one, Craig by, a baseball player, and so he had a batting cage put up in the back yard and he would pay me a little bit to come over and throw to him to work on his hitting, and it wasn't so much the money, but I got to stick on afterwards and use the pool. And he had an older sister, though, really good in a bathing suits. That was one of the best jobs I ever yeah, that'll get you over there. You don't have to pay me, just make sure she's by the pool, right. That's exactly right. So, you know, a lot...

...of us go through the time period that you talked about, through when we're young and high school and everything. Did you ever mentor did you have somebody you relied on? Or was it was it just your dad, like a lot of us had our dad, some of US had a great coach that we talked to all the time. Was it? was there somebody like that for you? Well, I mentioned, you know, my uncle, you know, and he was was twelve when my dad got back from World War Two and my dad was married and and then his parents passed away very quickly. So you know, all the other boys were grown and they were in the army or navy as well, like except for my my uncle and I had an aunt that was in high school and I think my uncles in seventh grade. So when I was born he was twelve. Sweet always been my older brother and he was a good high school athlet and he went to Northern Illinois and he was kind of always the one I looked up to. He became a high school math teacher and football and basketball coach. That's what I wanted to do. In fact, when the bangles drafted me, I had a job. He was at Newtre High School in Chicago at that point in time and there was a slot in the Math Department and coaching. And I said, Gary, I said if I go to the bangles that don't make it, that job's gone. And he said, Kenny, they're giving you a seventy five hundred signing bonus your first year teaching salaries five thousand. He says, go you'll get another thing before here. Don't make it. Basically right, if you don't trick if you don't try it, and you always going to wonder if you could. Yeah, yeah, so so you go through all this year at August Ana, you get drafted by the bangles. You're dealing with truck my gonna go to the military and all this. So that first year we get to see all that. With a lot of players today they don't have all those kind of things. Where did your mentality come from to deal with all that, because you always had a great, like upbeat personality and nothing ever seems to get you down. Well, you know, I think a lot of that is from my mom and dad, to great work ethic in your taught from a young age that if you got to do something, do it right. And I'd be a little kid and he'd go off to work. You know, he was a high school janitor and my mom was an office manager and in electrical switch factory that about a block from our house and we had one of the neighbor girls that kind of keep an eye on us during the day and you know, and the night before my dad's okay, here's we got to get done the next day before you do anything else. It might be getting his tools and stripping noose and painting nose or painting the windows, to strong windows or the screens, you know, whatever it may be right, but you know he expect you to get it done and you know, and they were always there for me. You know, I think they only missed one college football game and that was my fresh my freshman year, and we're playing in Sioux Fall South Dakotach is going to be about a ten hour ride for them and I wasn't scheduled to play and unbeknownst to them that I went in the start of the second quarter through a sixty five yard post. Had I became the starting quarterback thereafter. But and they you know, it was a five and a half hour dride. But they never missed a home game of mine in Cincinnati in sixteen years. Wow, that'll just that they have that kind of support. And and then, you know, just being able to love what you know you do. And in those days there was a little bit different. As I said that the draft was in January and there weren't all the rules. I moved to Cincinnati and February I went through my bonus, happy to pay my own way. In February there was no offseason program you know, I'm go and meet with Bill Walsh and everything was a sixteen millimeter film and so we'd go over something to give me a stack of films and he stuck at go home and we'll be Wednesday morning and he said right down every formation, and you go and do that. Then they give me the same ones. We're talking about coverages and you kind of go through that whole thing. And and sister, you know in those days when the season ended, everybody got a job to get you through to the next season. Yeah, but our offseason program we want to training camp July seven and we were in training camp until September fifteen, and knows the legally playing fourteen games the league. The First League game was the last Sunday in September and you played six preseason games. So you know, I would rather have an offseason program then we go to training camp for nine weeks. Yeah, yeah, I hear you there. Hey, everyone, thanks for joining us on huddle up with guests. I appreciate you listening. Check me out and huddle up with gustscom or wherever you listen to your favorite podcast. We're joined today by Ken Anderson, who's my quarterback coach. We were just talking a little bit about you know, who is mentors, war, war. When he was younger, he talked a lot about his parents. So, you know, can tell me a little bit about you dad, because my dad's philosophy was I'm going to harp on you about everything you did wrong in the game rather than anything you did right. So that's what I was dealing with. What was your dad like? No, he was always, you know, very supportive. You know, the only thing I can remember is that our High School Basketball Games that by Mr a...

...free throw, I hear a voice put some arc on the ball. That was the only criticism that he gave me. An in all the years I'm playing in Cincinnati and I don't know about you, but I never slept well after a game. It's all me and my folks are always staying with us after a home game and everybody's kind of going up gone to bed. Dad and I are having a beer and then we kind of start talking about the game and says, you know, thank you played pretty good today. So now he was always supportive. And now you talk about mentors. And once I got to the NFL, you know, my first coach was Bill Walsh, and it doesn't doesn't get any better than that. And just from a you know, a fundamental standpoint and how you do things. And I remember, you know, we're working on a three step drop. Okay, I'm standing there with the football in my hands and I'm walked this time, walking in place with that, and then started to throwing motion just to get a feel for and then I'll be okay, now this is this is going to be a big three. You could have to wait for the slant, for the second window, and you stand in place just to get your feet to move. And then, you know, the same thing with the five of quick five, a deep five of five and a hitch seven step. All the play. I just stood there in place doing it. The next week we walked through them. The third week we would jog through him. So it was a month before I'm doing anything close to the full speed. And then he was the first guy had, you know, timed up the depth of the receiver's route to the drop of the quarterback. Yeah, now you know what kind of going through all of that that we're doing. And he would stand out there and and then we kind of have dum it. Okay, now go go through progressions. I want your eyes to go through from one to two to three to the check down and all that. Your eyes got to be here from the hot read on this protection. And so just to get you know, that basically kind of carried me through my whole career and my coaching career. So a lot of the stuff that you and I were working on practice is the stuff that that bill and I did. I never made the stand in place for a drop, but we but we still worked on a lot of those fundamentals. Do you feel like when you were in college you were just kind of winging it and then when you got finally to the NFL, you really started really understanding mechanics and how to put it all together? Well, you know, I had a great guy to start with, Charlie Emery, that, you know, really helped me my first couple of years before he left to become a head coach at another division three school. But it was a little bit different, you know. We had guys, as I remember. You know, we had the head coach and we had one offensive coach, we had one defensive coach. There might have been gave, but me we didn't have a lot of coaches and you know. So you're trying to get everything done and you know, I was kind of a little roll out option quarterback, had a pretty good arm and you know, I got a new coach by junior here, a little more sophisticated in the passing game. But it was a whole different game when I went down to the bengals and trying to figure out what up they're doing, you know, with an NFL offense. But you know, and it's but again in when I got to the Bangles, Paul Brown was our head coach, Bill Walsh. Bill Walsh coach the tight ends, the wide receivers and the quarterbacks well, and we had a line coach and a running back coach. We had a defensive line coach, a linebacker coach in a secondary coach. So, you know, we would go and bill and I would go out between practices and, like I said, we're there are nine weeks. Every day was the two a day. Every day was in paths. The guys today could not go through that. No, I didn't even go through that. That was yea. And but he and I would go out between crash the after and I going to shower, go have lunch after lunch, I go back get dress, go back out with him before practice and that's when worked on the quarterback techniques and fundamentals. So it was you know, I guessid I just had. You know, I still think he's the best technician that that ever was. And you know, I don't know why they call it the West Coast Office because it all started in Cincinnati. Yeah, it just sounded better than the Cincinnati offense. And are they was? You know, our practice facility was under the Eighth Street viaduct, so it should have been the eighth street viaduct offense. Or Yeah, they there. You Go. Well, it's kind of is like when you go practice at the you know, walk over from the stadium and you walk where the bengos practice. Now it's like all the roads are going around you. It's a different place, like it's interesting. But but they got three fields the the practice on in their grass. You know, we had a sixty yard grass field and we had an astertur field, the old spinny field. Those astroturf fields were the worst. Yeah, that would just eat your whole arm up if you fell in that. Well, I want and I think the other thing. I think all those drops that took back. That's why my right he was replaced four years ago, right. Yeah, all the twisted turning. So I have built. You have bill wall she had some incredible coaches, and then, you know, you really had a mentality to play the game like this. Is that something that bill tell you? Where it's? Because your...

...completion percentage was always really high. You know, was that something that you were taught, or was it just like, okay, I understand that. You know, as long as we keep the ball, the other team's offense is not out here. What was some mentality for you, because, I mean you had the all time completion percentage in a for a season until drew breese broken you know, I think it was it was the offense that we not only challenge you vertically and back in those days it was there Alla Monica, the mad bomber, throw it down right. That was kind of the mentality. And if you looked at, you know, in those days, you know the quarterbacks with they complete a fifty percent of our passes. You know, that was a good percentage. Right. We were going to use to feel that, only vertically but horizontal and we were going to go we had a progression to go through and that kind of had an automatic guy of flair control that you can get to and we were will aim to throw that, not to take a sap and not to throw it incompletion and we'll take second and six from a completion to a running back as opposed to second and ten. So I kind of that was always kind of ingrained into me and we I think the other thing is I was had a very low interception percentage, that we were not going to turn the ball over. You know, I wasn't afraid to throw it away. If I had to take a sack, I was going to take a sack, but I was not going to turn the ball over. Yeah, and I'm sure playing the steelers defense of that era to you want didn't want to hold the ball on. Well, you know, that's I think the proudest thing of my career is I think, if you look back in the years that was the starting quarterback, that we had the best winning percentage against the steelers of any team of the National Football League. It was almost fifty fifty and everybody else was about thirty percent against those great teams and and I remember, you know, in seventy nine was the worst beengels team I was ever on and they came into Cincinnati. They were seven and Oh, on the way to another super bowl. We were all in seven. I think we beat him thirty four to seven, that they didn't cross midfield on the fourth quarter check. No said after the game up. I didn't know you guys better. I thought you through the game. But you know, we understood how to play Pittsburgh. We understood the physicality of it. I think we had a good offense for them and in fact I had we play them in Cincinnata. I was twenty out of twenty two. They wanted to play a cover to all day. Take Away Isaac Curtis, Take Away Charlie Joyner, who was a you know, although it came to fame and lost and San Diego, I was kidding, had to go to become a hall of Famer. Had to get fous to throw it to you hot. Yeah, you know, they want to take those guys away and I ate him up with every buddy backs and and with the tight ends and back at me. We had the ball for ten minutes on one drive when over ninety yards against them, the score touchdown. So we knew how to play those guys. Yes, so what what I mean? You guys are always really good. You always held the ball, you know, you did things that let you win. Like you, like you said, you had a great winning percentage. But what do you think was the one little difference between you and the steelers in that s era? Probably more players, you know, you look at at those teams, the number of hall of famers from not only their defense but their offense that were on those teams. So I think that was probably them. You know, the one big difference. And you know, like I said, yes, when you go against the steel curtain, you know, twice a year, I mean you can you can make a case for the eighty five bears. We mean that's kind of a one year wonder kind of thing. And the steelers were that from when chuck no get their sixty nine. So until you were tell you that was was the steeler curtain and they had a culture of defense there, and so they weren't they were tough to go against. Yeah, I could imagine they were. Everyone. Thanks for joining the I'm time with Ken Anderson Today. You can check our podcast out that huddle up with guestscom or wherever you listen to your favorite podcast. You can go to Sounder FM and check me out there too. We're talking with Ken Anderson. We're going through the S. are for you, coach, when you're playing to stealer's and they're really good and then all of a suddenly s it's like you guys took a turn in the s. What do you think that that was? Because in eighty one you go, you get to the Super Bowl. Well, I think one of the big things was that an eighty we got this guy named Wun Yos, you know as a left tackle, the best left enough tackle of all time. And then you know, in seventy nine we got a guarden next to him from UCLA, Max Montoya. That same year we took a number one draft choice, Blair Bush, out of Washington, as a center. My old roommate Dave lapping was a veteran guard. We got another rickie tackle from Georgia, Mike Wilson. They drafted by replacement. And seventy nine, you know, I was going downhill, but I had a resurgent when there's always under's five guys in front of you. There made a correlation to that somewhere. I'm not yeah, I think anyway, wait, was it eighty or seventy nine that you were sacked the most in your career? Ivery Deeve, it was seventy nine. Yeah, and I'll do it in one thousand nine hundred and and eighty and he really toughened us up both...

...mentally and physically. I don't know if you've ever done eighty grass bills before practice and that's the last thing we did in Calis centage and then take a lap around the field, go to the seven man fled and try to call it CADEN's for everybody to come off the ball with. kind of the hardest thing, you know, I've ever done. And you know, we would kind of feature in a s every day. Was the two a day. You know, we kind of featured the run, you know, maybe in the morning and the past or the passive morning running, they whatever it was. And after we do the UPDOWNS and it's hard to lift your arm to throw Kerry push some touch on the box. I can hardly lift it. Yeah, I wanted to talk to him one time. I said, coach, I'm not pitching about the UPDOWNS, but when we do them, can we kind of feature the RUE Games after that rather than the passing game. He would not make a change until the next year and Trady camp, he switched it around, but he's not going to get into anything his first year. But more than that, we got a another really creative offense of cord and Lindian Fonte, and we were we were the first ones to run kind of the bootlegs that quarterbacks you don't make. It's whatever you want to yeah, that and our super bowl. You're eighty one on my tenth year in the League and I was the second leading rushier on the team. You know, I had three hundred sixty five yards rushing that year. A lot of more that. He was very creative in the passing game that we did a lot of optionize both with the tight end of wide receivers that had a lot of adjustments that they could make depending on what coverage tick came to. So we were a little bit of the head of the game there and then it really, you know, kind of set us to part offensively. Yeah, there wasn't. It did seem like quarterbacks were much like maybe Fran targeting back in the day, but you kind of went through your progressions back in the day, right, or if you were out and about it was because you were on a naked or a bootlets or something like that. But you, you, I mean you rush for a twenty two hundred yards in your career. You know what I mean? That's pretty amazing. Yeah, you know, and I think a lot of them, you know, as you know, Jill Bros got a great job of the jokes. Not The fastest guy in the world. Right, next game he'll make three plays that for first outs and they're always straight up the middle. Yeah, so if teams want to play and we called to man, everybody's doubled, you know, everybody's band. Nobody's got the quarterback. So boy, if I dropped back and I stopped to man and there's a lane, you know, you got ten yards before anybody even sees you. So and I think you know, understanding the situations of what you can do and and I had some athletic ability. I think you had a lot from reading all your stats and what you did in your throughout your career. So in eighty one, right, you get to the Super Bowl. What was that whole experience was like for you? That that week that you're there. Do you think back through all the times you're growing up in Batavia, then you're at August and and all the stuff went through? Does that go through your head? Are you just so focus on what you're doing? Well, you know, it's the Super Bowl. Van is so much different than it is today and I thought that was the first year we we played the super on Pontiac, Michigan. Right before the season I said, and if I ever go go to a super bowl, it's this year. Do I get to go to La do I get to go to Aris Domino? And why get to the wars? So I get to go to part now I'll get to go to any act Michigan. And and I think you know we played the Anson Championship game that year in Cincinnati and was fifty nine below zero with the wind chill. Oh Yeah, what was that game called? It was called Free Street in the freezerable foremam and so we you know, after that game, we had the week before you go to the Super Bowl. Side we stayed in Cincinnati and you know now you don't have heat adventures, you don't have sidelines heaters. It was tough to practice, so we didn't get a lot done until we went to the Super Bowl site. But you know what, when you go there and I can talk about you know, I think they've already started. The pregame shows for the Super Bowl were already but the pregame show on the network for that year it was only thirty minutes before the game and there was no trophy presentation after the game because they had to get into sixty minutes on time. Yeah, so it so we went there, we did our media day and then that was our only media responsibilities for the rest of the week. So it was it was kind of funny because the only place to place to practice was in the Party Act Silver Dome, and we won the coin flip. We got to practice in the afternoon. The forty niners practiced in the morning. So I would see Bill Walsh every day. Go I'm going in as he's going out. So we always had a chance to talk a little bit there. But you know, it's just you know, it's you try to convince yourself it's not a big game. You know it's just another football game and you know you go there and I was doing a pretty good jobs through pregame warmups to that and then went out and after the introductions. You standing on the sideline for the national anthem and Diana Ross sang the national anthems. She was a big star in those days. Yeah, I'm going she doesn't show up and Sincinat it, there must be something special to this game. So...

...that's when it kind of hits it. Maybe this game is a little bit bigger than you thought. Yeah, so that was amazing. You got to do that. I mean you've had an incredible career. So you play another after that. I think you play another five years, right. Yeah, six, and then as you get older, I mean I mean I played fifteen, you played sixteen, but you got to be in the same city that a whole time and that's very rare. And somebody you coached at the steelers just his career just ended and got to do the same thing. It doesn't happen to everyone. Know it doesn't. And and you know, back back in those days there was no free agency, so the only way that you left the team as if they cut you or traded you. Somebody is but Cincinnati was a good place for me. You know, I was a small town kid, but Tabe Illinois, population tenzero. You know, division three school, you know enrollment twenty five hundred, I think. Can I gone? You know, I grew up a bears fan, you know, and I gone to Chicago I'd probably got eaten up. I don't know if I could have handled that. But since that was a perfect place for me to go, the perfect head coach. And Paul Brown, you know, he talked to me a lot about Auto Graham, who he had, great quarterback for the Cleveland Browns. Yeah, in fact, you talked about great quarterbacks. He played ten years of professional football. He was in the last game of the year all ten years and one seven of them. And then and then in the offseason had time to play professional basketball for the Rochester royal us. So people, we talked about all. They would never let any of that happen today. Right, no, no, no good. But he would talk a lot about how Otto did things. And and I remember you we had the Messenger Guard system. Well, I was a robot. They sent the plays in and they sent the place in. Every quarterback nowadays. But so I was with Otto at a golf term and he says Ken, so when that guard comes in, have you ever said that's a really a bad play? When to call this and I said, I don't. I said, you know, I'm kind of just figuring my way out through this whole thing. I haven't done that yet. Is Little piece of advice. If you ever do, make sure it works. Yeah, that's always good advice coming from another quarterback. Yes, yes, yeah, that definitely so you go through, you have an incredible career with the bengals and then when you retire you're getting ready to do the transition. How is that process for you? Did you want? I know you did some color commentating. Did you want to do that or do you want to expand into something else? Well, I've always wanted to coach, you know, we talked about earlier. You know, I wanted to be a high school math teacher and football and basketball coach. Yeah, but coaching is always kind of in the back of my mind. But you know, everybody says all you wanted that you got to be stupid to want to do that. Doing the time it takes it to be a coach. And I had some opportunities to go into coaching as help. I'm not going to be stupid about this thing. And then it just it got to the point that I realized, you know, I was doing local radio and television and you know I had the the show with inside the NFL with Nick Bondacani and Lenny Dawson. Yeah, I just just became the the news anchor. I was the guy doing the six and eleven o'clock sports and and I get a call before the season they wanted to expand that. The three guys are what I consider doing it. I thought this is my chance of broadcasting, you know right. And our news director wouldn't let me do it and that really take me off and I said, you know, I'm not meant to be the anchor guy. I was awful trying to read a teleprompter. I would just okay if I'm doing a remote, you know at the Red Stadium around batty practice. You know, I could kind of fudget and get to a role queue for video. I was okay then, but you know, you realize this is not what I want to do. And so Dave Sheila gave me a chance to go into coaching and so I jumped at that. I always appreciate that. But you know, unfortunately that the bangles of the S and a part of it. You know, we weren't always real good. We kind of lacked a few things and I think some of them, like I said, were and I were talking earlier, that you didn't get a very good coach back in those days. I'm I didn't have enough spirit experience. I hadn't been around enough, you know, to learn different ways of doing things. You kind of so ingrained to what I had done. And you know, after when Marvin Lewis came, I had a chance to go coach in Jacksonville. You know, Bill must grave was the first coordinator. Their Carl Smith, whos some reason he's skilled coaching with a Seattle in fact, I texted him. I'm watching the pregame show. He's walking in with Russell Wilson. I saw always trying to get on TV are Jett. He's well, yeah, I got to go to the PISSP with Mike Tom and greet herings and I said got I wish I could have gotten to Cincinnati with the experiences I had had elsewhere. I would have been a much better coach for you and for the team. I thought you were a great coach. I besides, you know, getting a little dip on our papers in the morning, yeah, and them out...

...everyone. We're talking to my quarterback coach when I played for the Bangles, coach Anderson. We just went through his whole career. I mean I can't even tell you the the stats and everything he's had. He's been MVP offensive player of the year. You want to listen to that, park go check us out at huddle up with gustcom wherever you listen to your favorite podcast. Because so, coach, you know we're talking about your coaching career. I feel bad because the year after that I was in Cincinnati. I think the whole staff was let go and there's a whole new crew. That was your last coaching stint in Cincinnati. I feel like I had a part to do with that because it didn't go the way I planned, and I have to say that, you know, there was a lot that was going on with myself in Cincinnati that year, but I always really when I think back about it. You talked about like I could have been a better coach, but I thought you were great coach because you were always up beat. Even though we didn't have a team. You always had a lot of passion poise for us and even though there was a lot of competition between John Kittn a Chillie Smith and myself. You handled it so well. I thought you just did an incredible job with that. Where was that? was that the year and it was my last year and it was the year that Carson Palmer was going up with a couple other guys. And when I came into the meeting one Saturday and the bagels wanted to go scout those guys in person. And I remember coming into the meeting one time to tell you guys, I'm friend of they'll be no quarterback meeting on Saturday. And what do you guys said? I'm going out to scout the guy that's going to take your place. So, Hey, dons, as you know, there's always somebody taking your place. Oh, but that was so hard to meet because I go out, you know I well, I was front of fun. I watched Carson Palmer play against Notre Dame in the coliseum. Well, now I'm taking an all nighter back and my wife picks me up, you know, at the the airport, you know, and then I'd go down the stadium and, you know, I remember telling me, you know, if there's a bad connection, I don't make the game. And it's no, that's okay. This is more important. So you know, but I have just but I you know, I really liked what I did. You know, I like being around you guys. You kept me young and I always liked, you know, the grime days for a coach, our Mondays and Tuesday's getting the game plan. Yeah, and I love those days. I love looking at the film, I love trying to figure out how we're going to attack and defense and and no. So that those were always, you know, just the coaching life suited me and and, like I said, you just I got to go to work every day and be a football player coach. Yeah, which is awesome, which after a career, that's that's pretty good. So then like, but you also coach boomer sigason rights. Yeah, he want boomer. He was the guy that took my place. Right. That's what I'm saying. They couldn't be easy. But before I retired and then, you know, boomer went to the jets for a while, that he was out in Arizona and then he came back to us. That the backup Jeff Lake and we were off to a bad start and Bruce cosle turned the play calling over to me. And so it's the first game I'm calling plays and it was great because Bruce took off the headset he wanted. People are not, you know, I'm not interfering with Kenny. And so we're playing. We're up in Indie play, you know, and Jeff Blake is playing bad and Chris we're going to take them out. boomers going in and for the next five weeks boomer and I just for some reason click, you know, I was kind of in his head. He was in mind. We're actually a boy forty a game, you know. And then so we're all excited. We get boomer back next year. He'll be exciting, you know it. Were really going to have fun. And then he had an offer to go do Monday night football and chose to do that so that like he could do Nonday night football for another twenty years. Right, yeah, you're good at it. Yeah, no doubt, no doubt. So then you leave Cincinnati. You've been there since seventy one right, that's an incredible run in one city. Played that time, coach. And now you go to I think it was Jacksonville next, correct, correct, and you go with a guy now who's up there's been really good as an offensive coordinator with Byron left, which. What can you tell me about Byron? That what what makes him so good at his coaching career. Now, he was really smart. I mean he kept me on my toes as a coach and we would come in for the first meeting on Wednesday we kind of go overcoverage, because I don't have that. You know where we were. My called that we had to go back and find out what. I called something and he was calling something else. So he already you know and it was always prepared like that, you know. But I love Byron to death, but he had some mechanical flaws as a court and he had that big wine. I got some the balls below his knee as he was winding winding up and that ended up really hurting him, although his rookie year he had the third best rookie of anybody in the National Football League history up to that. Right. But he has some mechanical flaws. But I knew right then that this guy he I mean he was a smart football player and I ran into him again when I...

...went to Pittsford. We brought him as as back up and we had a rookie named Dennis Dixon that we and he would have been a hired draft choice, but he's come off a knee injury and I told him, I'm here's the deal, all right, you attach yourself to Byron left, which whatever he does, you do when he's in this building and what you sitting next to him in this building. And and I think that really, you know, helped him out and I always knew that Byron would make a good head coach. But you know, it's like a lot of guys that played in his area, that you make enough money that you don't have to go through the grind of it. Yeah, you know, and and then so I was really happy to hear that. You know, I always didn't touch. You know, Tom Moore has always been one of my coaching mentors. I met him when he was with the steelers and then, yeah, hat manning all those years and then he was a went out kept coaching. was out with Rucarians and Arizona. In fact he's turn of the eighty two and he's still down in Tampa Bay coaching. But Byron, you know, went out there and you know kind of started off as a quarterback coach and and you know, it was a little while getting a takes while to get adjusting to the coaching life. But but he fit right in and he's doing a great job and you know he's talking about, you know, a tough job. You're the office of court inner for Tom Brady, you know, and and to get you know, a guy like that, that this one everything. That's a great part of the part of the greatest quarterback of all time, at least, you know, for what he's done on the field, but you know, for Byron to earn his respect and get the trust of a guy like that and to kind of change some things in the way that he operated. You know. So I think that was a masterful job that he's done there and I think, you know, there be some point in time that you know, he's he's going to be a head coach and then I may have to call him and as the environing up, you know, you need it. You need an old guy to be a yeah, fult for you about. You need an offensive consultant, right, I don't want to coach anything, I just want to be a consultant. You know those jobs, right, how would although combat Tom Moore has managed, they get still get by with it. I agree with all you said about Byron though. I mean if you're in Tampa, you have the greatest quarterback that's ever played the game, you have one of the greatest coaches, Bruce Arians, and then you have another one of the greatest coaches and Tom Moore, that you get to pick their brains and listen to them. And then also, I think they let him call the place for Tom Oh. NOPE, no question. That was a big people for for groups a couple of years ago because he called the place and you know to him to trust Byron to relinquish. You know that. But I think you know, you talk about, you know, great guys to work for. I don't Tom you know, when he was in Indianapolis with Peyton Manning, he said he made me a better coach because he would come in with a question and I had to have an answer. Well, they do this, what are we going to do? And he's I had to have answers for him, and so he said he kept me on top of my game and I think, you know, I got like Tom Brady. You know, I've heard that. You know he kind of wants to me at the beginning of the week, you know, just with fired we can kind of how they're going to formulate things. So but, like I say, that's it's not easy, always coaching the superstar. Yeah, no, I can imagine that. So you've been a super bowl as a player, you went there as a coach with the steelers, and now the Bengals, who you're just ingrained in your part of them. They're back at it. And tell me a little bit what you think about their quarterback, Joe Borrow, and what makes him special. He's the real deal. He's got great football intelligence. You know, he can figure things out, he can see things, know where he wants to go with the football and you know, I think if you look at him, does he have the strongest arm in the League? No. Is he got the most athletic ability of any quarterback in the League? No, but he gets the job done. You know, he's tremendously accurate. He's mobile enough. How many big plays he made outside the pocket to throw onto his wide receivers? But he figures things out and I think his leadership skills are off the chart. You know I mean that that whole team wonders. Every really like this team and bought because they head coach. I tell you one story about SEC titter that his first year they didn't want many games. and was it to the first year? Yeah, so, you know, three courts went through the season. They're playing in London and my wife and I get a chance to go over for that game and the League brought me over, so I was doing a bunch of stuff. But you know, so they practiced the Cincinnati on Thursday after the afternoon. Practice of means go to the airport, fly all night, drop your bags off a hotel, get ready for practice, get out of bus, go to sub little stadium around the London area and it's one of those cold, drizzly London days typically. Let Me Yeah, how many times have you seen a team, even if you're playing well,...

...it's very easy to go through the motions. Yeah, so I you know, I happen to be at that practice and and I'm going out there and I see one of the most spirited, well executed practices I've ever seen. And I said, these guys get what Zach is saying and then the next year they get a Joe Burrow and just kind of see things grow in that. But it's the confidence that the team has and and every team, successful team that I've been on, gusts as always been. You've got a lot of great locker room leadership. These guys hold each other accountable. You know, if you don't want to work as hard as me to get this thing done and done right, we don't need to hear you know, they make but pulling the great direcsion. And you know, on offense, you know they've got you know, got tyler boy, who's been around. You know they've got Joe Mixon, who's been there. You know Joe Burrows, who should assume a great leadership role. A CJ Usama came from somewhere else. You know, Trey Henderson came from the New Orleans Saints. New It's get what's got fourteen sacks so far this year. Yeah, these veterans, you know, shape the culture of that locker room. They listened to Zach and Zach, you know, I don't know if I could coach nowadays. You know, the the modern age play are but that's young enough that he can relate to him. Yeah, he understands there right you why? When you, when I was coaching, you were never going to get a break to go check your cell phone. You're not room. Yeah, yeah, although, although I will say Achille tried quite often. That's the whole nother store we're not going to get into. And I you know, they have amazing players. I think for me personally watching them, I think they're missing one guy like the guy you got in one thousand nine hundred and eighty. They get an Antonymoonhos type, somehow, some way, that team will explode because they got the offensive firepower with Jamar chase to higgins all those guys. But you you solidify that line and give Joe Borrow some time where he's not on his back nine times in one game, it's going to be a lot of fun to watch for the years to come. Yeah, well, you know, there would be better next year than they are this year. And they got all those young stars tied up in their rookie contracts, the prayers and they spent a hundred million dollars on defense. Well, they got all those guys under contract, they've got cap space, so now they can address the offensive line and you know, I think that's kind of been you know, when you get a good young quarterback at this day and age, you gotta Make Hey while they're on the rookie contract right and you better you definitely do well. You know, if Patrick Mahomes is getting fifty million a year, the bag is better be putting some money in the bank, because don't it's got better have a lot of caps face when he's ready, right, because you're going to get you know. But then you know, once the quarterback hits, that's the point and takes up so much of your cast space you can't necessarily have all the pieces around them, right. Why this next four or five years go to be critical for the bengals. Yeah, so what's your prediction for the Souper Bowl? Coach? I ain't been against borough. You know, you talked about him being stacked nine times against Tennessee. You know, I guess that the ninth time they pick up the help back to the houses. Don't worry about guys, we're still in great shape. You know what, let we'll get it done if things don't phase him. And I think that you know when you have a quarterback that you know, you can count on, that you know what's going to deliver for you. I think everybody jumps on the bandwagon, but you know, if he I got to do this to help him out. You know that just the enthusiasm for which they play. The Joy, you know, is they're not. You know, they won their first playoff game in thirty one years. There's a lot of baggages Cincinnati they don't carry. Those guys were born thirty years ago. Yeah, Hey, we're just playing football, we're playing with our friends. Were having fun playing it and we think we're pretty good. So I love seeing you. I love seeing you. Let the the team. You know, we're getting on the plane. They came to the stadium, had a little PEP rally for him and you were up on stage. There's a there's comedian I follow, Gary Owens. You were up there with him, huge Bangles Fan, and you know that had to be like does that like? You're in the middle of the stadium? That's there's another team going to super bowl. You were the last one to be there. That had to feel pretty good. Well, the only thing I was disappointed about that we were, you know, I had some most other former players there, but waiting to go out there. They said now listed because of code protocols, you can't go near the team. Yeah, you know. So then it was a cold night, since I wasn't even going to stay around that my sergey, I was going to come back to Hilton and my son talked in with his dad. Your grandkids would really get a kick out of this. As all right, I'll stay. And so we're out that they had some heat ad benches for the players and their wives. That the stint on. Yeah, it's really made a kind of bearable. And so now the team comes out and the captains, of which Joe Burrows one, goes up...

...and he's one of the guys that speaks well. All the other team is coming over and there's sting on the head ad benches. They go. You know, wait a second, that's where you know, move over. You don't give me a little to see some of the guys, but I have yet to meet Joe Burrow. Wow, every ever since he has been was drafted the the covid protocols to get around the locker room, or so strict. You know. Yeah, before that I used to go down and and go into the equipment room is sitting, have a cup of coffee. Guys are kind of coming in and out, walk to the locker and talk to guys, go upstairs to the coaches officers. You know what, I got to know all the coaches and for the last two years. That hasn't happened, you know. Yeah, that's probably put a damper on that. Yeah, and I'll text show once in a while. You know, I stayed communication with coach Taylor, you know, because I think he's a great guy. But so one of these days I hope they want a super bowl and he and I get a chance to sit on have a beer when nob was watching after that. I'd be nice. Yet do you definitely love your beer? Well, here I'll introduce I don't know if you can see that. That's a one thousand nine hundred and eighty one super bowl Ken Anderson. Yeah, you know. And then here I'll introduce you to Joe Barrows, if you haven't met him. Yeah, okay, well, this year, here's this year super bowl champions. So right, sounds and I collect card so it's kind of fun. Well then, that's but in fact it was kind of funny that. You know, my grandkids range from from ten to two. I've got six of them, and so last year from Christmas I had a bunch of my cards, whichever one I had six up, I made a little card album for them. They give out and to kind of Rune a little special letter that you know you don't remember your grandpa playing, but you know there's a right thank for we'll talk about and it's kind of been fun to see some, especially the boys, now looking to collect cards and and add to that and and I have one grandson and they were at the course. All I grant gets wrapped the pepper rally and they're kind of taking all US old players around in the golf car around the stadium, you know, a little lap before it all starts, and I see them down in the front row and I want my one grandson. He's just GRANDPA. Can you bring some of the players over to me when they come out? Yeah, I said, you know, because you know I've taken them all, all the boys, to the training camp. Well again before covid and we could be down on the field and you know, kind of kind of go out and walk around and and I remembers when she abind Bernard was there. My grandson had a his Jersey on. That's why it's his birthday. He took off his shoes after practice and sign them and gave him to yeah, he probably loves that. That was kind of fun time when I can interact with the team a little bit, and so I can't wait for those days to come back again because, you know, I got a lot of orange and black in my veins and she knew. It's just it's nice to be around him and you know when I got to perhaps and talked to Mike Brown and I've got a you know, he goes over to the ball bag and takes off boxes. Give this to your grandson. So they thought that was the biggest thing, you know, going that they get. You know that they get to be a part of that a little bit and I'd like to be a part of that again. Well, coach, I appreciate you coming on. You've had an amazing story. You've set NFL records, franchise records, you've been been an incredible ambassador for the game of football and I appreciate you taking the time to be with me and also taking that year that I had in Cincinnati getting to know you and I wish, I'd like I said, I wish I had known a lot of this story before we would have sat down on a first QUB meeting. Well, I tell you what I we shall have friends in Pittsburgh and it's been a while, but you know, after I return. I was always trying to get back there for a game. Every year. I'm going to make it a point to get back to a game. I'm going to call your buddy that had to body some beers before the game. I got a lot of places I could buy you beer and Pittsburgh. Okay, it sounds great to me. All right, coach, I appreciate you. Come on, hey everyone, what a great episode Super Bowl Week Bangles Rams. We got previous Super Bowl coach player that joined us today, Ken Anderson. What an amazing show here in Kent Story all that he's done with the bangles for them on the field and off the field. So what an incredible show. Check me out, neck anywhere you want. We ever you listen your favorite podcast. Go to huddle up with gusts. Check me out. Maybe get some cuttle up with gusts gear. I don't know if you want anybody'd be nice. But coach, black and orange really go through your veins and you know I'm pulled for a bengles winn and as probably as much as you are. Well, you know I do have a super bowl ring and just happens to be with the steelers. So I get there's a little black and gold in there somewhere. I'll I will say the Super Bowl Ring has never made it to Cincinnati. So yeah, yeah, they would know if it's around it heaven or around it. Definitely. That's exactly but okay, forty one sedge friend drive killed the South Carolina for that puddle up with Gust here. I'm all right, I love it. I'm sending it. All right, coach, have a good one. I appreciate you. Man. Take care of to stay in touch place. I will. I will have a great super bowl weekend, buddy. That's...

...a wrap sport. Thanks for joining in the fun. Studios for numbers featuring fifteen year NFL quarterback dust rock. Huddle up with gusts is probably produced by thus six hundred and thirty one digital media and disavailable happy music.

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