Every day of the 2015 Chicago Bears season, Chicago Sun-Times Sports will revisit its coverage 30 years ago during the 1985 Bears’ run to a Super Bowl title.
Perry will have king-sized job
Originally published Jan. 23, 1986
What do the Patriots’ blockers think of William Perry?
“He’s big,” tackle Randy Holloway said.
He’ll be an eyeful for left guard John Hannah Sunday, when the Bears play the Patriots in the Super Bowl. The question is, will Hannah be a handful for Perry?
Hannah has made nine Pro Bowls in his 13 seasons, all but one of the last 10. He won the Players Association’s first four awards for Offensive Lineman of the Year until the voters got bored with writing his name. Sports Illustrated called him the best offensive lineman in NFL history.
He’s as good as ever. Onlookers said his three playoff games were among his best. And Perry’s only a rookie.
“If Fat Boy can’t handle him, I’ll move Dan Hampton over there,” defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan says. “But I figure Fatso ought to be able to do a good job.”
Perry is as strong as anyone, and that’s Hannah’s best attribute. Hannah has developed all the other skills a guard needs. “You’ve got to keep your feet moving or he’s going to stomp all over you,” center Pete Brock says. But above all, Hannah has strength, and he’s eager to use it.
“Usually when you say offense, that means you’re on the attack,” Hannah says. “That’s the way I like to play.”
He compares Perry with former Pittsburgh defensive tackle Ernie `Fats” Holmes, a power rusher who didn’t bother with finesse. “Same height. Short stride. Big. Naturally strong. Good quickness,” he says.
People don’t compare Hannah. They exalt him.
“Best offensive lineman ever,” says Steve McMichael, the Bears’ other defensive tackle.
“Best one-on-one blocker in the league,” says Hampton.
“I don’t think anybody relishes the idea of going against John Hannah,” Bears coach Mike Ditka says. “But it has to be done, and William is the type of guy who will give it his best shot. I’m sure John will give it his best shot. It ought to be interesting when those two collide.”
The prospect doesn’t seem to have Perry perturbed. He looked so placid yesterday someone asked him when he would put his game face on. Not until Sunday, Perry said.
“That’s when I play,” he said. “Sunday. I’ll be ready.”