Former Redskins offensive lineman Russ Grimm, the first of the famed “Hogs” to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, recalled a story that has followed him for years, one that you probably shouldn’t read if you’ve just eaten lunch.
The subject of the story came up in a radio interview with XTRA 910 in Phoenix, during which Grimm, the Cardinals’ assistant head coach/offensive line coach, confirmed its veracity (well, most of it, anyway).
Legend has it Grimm once threw up a hot dog on the practice field, only to pick it back up and eat it again.
"The hot dog story — I’m not going to say it’s false,” Grimm said. “It’s a little embellished but it’s probably 60, 65% true. There’s some wrinkles in it, but I’ll just leave it at that.”
Grimm on which part of the 60-65% is true:
"Well I’ll just say it wasn’t a whole dog. It was only a piece. It was in between practices. We hadn’t been out to the bar yet so it was in between practices. And basically the rest of it’s true.”
Reminds us of one other gross story involving football. At a tailgate before a Jets’ game several years ago, I personally witnessed a well-lubricated fan get sick to his stomach several times. Undeterred, he continued drinking and tailgating. At one point, he was eating some sausage. He decided to throw a piece in the air and try and catch it in his mouth. He missed, and the sausage fell to the ground.
He then picked up the sausage, dipped it in his own vomit, and … he ate it!!
Ok, back to Grimm for some more straightforward stuff on his Hall of Fame selection.
On being the first member of “Hogs’ to be selected: "It was a special group. Like I say all the time, sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. And I was lucky to be drafted by an organization that had a new coach coming in with Coach [Joe] Gibbs. Kind of a changing of the guard. They were going to, you know, go with a lot of younger players. There were four of us that were basically all of us were rookies — Joe Jacoby, Jeff Bostic, myself and Mark May — and we started out 0-5, but we finished that year 8-8.
"Then in ‘88 we rolled in to the playoffs and won a Super Bowl and kind of got the nickname ‘The Hogs’. But the camaraderie, the passion you feel for…you know, obviously I don’t want to be the weak link, I want to make this thing go, I don’t want to be the guy who breaks down because I feel bad enough if I let the coaching staff down.
"But I’d feel bad if I let the guys down playing beside me. So you know, we had a lot of strong guys and I think there were five of us - Jacoby, myself, Bostic, Donnie Warren and Art Monk, and Monte Coleman were able to play for all those years and on all those Super Bowl teams.”
On how shocking it was like seeing fans in the stands at RFK dressing up in homage to him and his teammates along the offensive line: “It was, it was. Because at the time, offensive linemen really didn’t get any recognition and you know, we were one of the first groups that kind of got that recognition...”
On his former coach and mentor, Joe Bugel, who will be presenting him when he’s enshrined in Canton this summer: "There was never any doubt as to who was going to present me or introduce me in Canton. The guy is, he’s a friend, he’s a father figure, I’m not afraid to say it..I look at him all the time and say I love you. I mean, what he did for me — I hated him some days. He pushed you to the point where sometimes you were ready to snap on him, but in the long run he built that group into what it was and I got a lot of respect for the man. He’s not only a great person, he’s a great coach and he said he’s going to retire now from the NFL. And I said there’s one more thing you got to do. When I got selected I said ‘you got to present me in Canton.’ So he was excited about it, and I’m excited for him. And I’m excited for myself.”