Ernie StautnerSince the days of the late Dr. John B. Sutherland, the Pittsburgh Steelers have consistently turned out defensive squads capable of a hard-nosed, rock-em sock-em brand of football. Although he joined the Steelers after the death of the immortal "Jock," Ernie Stautner is a perfect specimen of the Sutherland type lineman.

Big and strong at two-hundred thirty-five pounds, the Steeler stalwart has excellent mobility and most important, is capable of fierce bone-crushing rushes. Another qualification of the big Bavarian that would have pleased "Jock" is his ability to go both ways.

Throughout the 1955 season and upon several occasions since, when injuries necessitated the switch, Stautner has found himself lining up with the offensive platoon. His attitude towards winning was best demonstrated during the 1955 season in a particularly grueling Steeler­/Giant game.

Standing on the sidelines with the rest of the offensive unit, Ernie watched an exhausted Steeler defense desperately struggling to avert an imminent Giant score. Grabbing his helmet and turning to an amazed defensive coach Stautner said, "I'm going in." From the six yard line the Giants were unable to score in four plays and the Steelers won 19-17.

Nine years of pro ball might lessen the competition spirit of some ball players but not so, Stautner. Following the Bear-Steeler exhibition of this year offensive tackle Bill Wightkin of the Bears remarked, "Don't let anybody say Stautner is slowing up. There isn't a guy in either division who charges any harder."

As a perennial Steeler representative to the All-Pro game, Ernie has always been outstanding among the cream of both divisions. Two years ago he received the original All-Pro award for "lineman of the game."

As a family man and as a businessman Stautner is a credit to professional sports. The family, including wife, Helen, one boy and one girl, lives in very comfortable surroundings in Lake Saranac, New York. Stautner owns and operates a flourishing drive-in theater during the off season.

Stautner's career might serve as a proud example of some of the objectives of professional football. A great athlete, using his God given talents in honest competition, has brought enjoyment to thousands of football fans. In return, the fans, through their support of pro ball, have provided Ernie Stautner and his family with a major step towards a financially secure future.

Article and image taken from the October 5th official programme.

Editor's note: Steelers had a 7-4-1 season but lost this game 12-45.

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