Late Seahawks Coach Jack Patera Once Told Me His “Secret For Success”
Yesterday, the Seattle Seahawks first head coach, Jack Patera, died at the age of 85.
In 2015, I was lucky enough to meet Jack Patera at a Seahawks event in Ocean Shores. I asked him what the secret to his success was and I will never forget what he told me.
He told me to believe in myself, even when everyone else doesn't. If you believe you know the right way to do something, ignore the doubters and blaze your own trail. He talked about how as a D-lineman, he knew that by standing in a 2 point vs a 3 or 4 point stance he could be faster off the line. Every coach he ever played for told him he was wrong and it wasn't until he became a coach later that he could actually prove it. Now most D-ends start from a 2 point or standing position thanks to him.
I once got to play golf with Charlie McShane, an ex linebacker for the Seahawks, and he had some great stories of Jack also. Charlie talked about how the players used to sneak water during practice because Jack thought that keeping water from them was making them tougher. Charlie said Jack was hard to play for, but everyone loved and respected him.
Jack coached the Seahawks from 1976 to 1982 and lived those words every day. His creative style of coaching caught on immediately with fans and made the Seahawks fun to watch. He was named the coach of the year in 1978 where he lead the Seahawks to their first franchise winning season at 9-7.
Ex-Seahawks Qb Jim Zorn had some great things to say after learning of his coaches passing.
Sadly, Jack Patera died on Halloween at the age of 85 after a long fight with cancer.
I personally will miss you Jack. Thanks for everything you did for the Seahawks and I will try to live my life by the same rules you shared with me that day.