After playing quarterback in high school Jack
Lambert switched to linebacker in college at Kent State and gave new meaning
to the old adage, "it's better to give than receive." A tenacious tackler who
threw his whole body into every collision, Jack's ferocious playing style was
a natural fit for the Steeler's legendary "Steel Curtain" defense. "Jackson,"
as he was called by his Steeler teammates, was ultimately inducted into the
Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1990.
If a football player's Hall of Fame plaque included his headgear, as it does
in baseball, then Jack's bust would certainly be shown wearing a Rawling's
"Headliner" helmet. Lambert and players such as Terry Bradshaw, Bert Jones and
Tony Dorsett, all who had a thinner profile head shape, found that Rawling's
helmets provided a better fit compared to more conventional models such as
Riddell. Also, the Rawling's "Headliner" helmet combined the benefits of a
lightweight webbed suspension helmet with added protection provided by
supplemental cushion padding in critical areas of the shell. The "cross hair"
screws used by Rawlings to attach the suspension (rather than rivets) gave an
already stunning Steeler helmet an even more menacing look.
Waving his arms madly prior to the snap,
shifting his eyes like a wise but impatient owl, bouncing on his feet ready to
pounce, yelling commands through a toothless scowl, unrelenting pursuit
followed by a frightful collision -- all things considered, the unconventional
Rawling's "Headliner" was the perfect helmet for the Steeler's famed
intimidator and field general Jack "Jackson" Lambert.