Zeke Bratkowski was the backup QB for Bart Starr who also passed away earlier this year at the age of 85.
Zeke Bratkowski, the Packers’ backup quarterback when they won three straight NFL championships in the 1960s under Vince Lombardi, passed away Monday at age 88. https://t.co/wIo4qh2BsM
— Green Bay Packers (@packers) November 11, 2019
Bratkowski played for the University of Georgia and was drafted in 1953 by the Chicago Bears and also played with the Los Angeles Rams. He still currently ranks 8th for UGA all-time passing leaders. He joined the Packers for the 1964 season until his initial retirement in 1968. He then returned from retirement for one season in 1971. His was known by many fans at the time as Uncle Zekie and also as Super Sub. He appeared in 43 games for the Packers in the Vince Lombardi era and started 9 of those games.
Here a summary of Bratkowski’s coaching career with the NFL:
1969–1970, Green Bay Packers: Assistant
1972–1974, Chicago Bears: Assistant
1975–1981, Green Bay Packers: Assistant
1982–1984, Baltimore / Indianapolis Colts: OC/QB
1985–1989, New York Jets: QB
1990, Cleveland Browns: QB
1991–1992, Philadelphia Eagles: QB
1993–1994, Philadelphia Eagles: OC/QB
1995, New York Jets: OC/QB
Bratkowski was added to the Packers Hall of Fame in 1989.
I think being inducted to the Packers Hall of Fame speaks volumes about the man.
R I P
Great guy, but from I read, Bratkowski was the dude who was who was high on Rich Campbell as a QB. And while the scouting staff pushed heavily for Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, and Lott had actually spent two days in Green Bay before the draft, with the 6th pick in the 1981 draft, Starr went with Zeke’s suggestion and took Campbell after the Packers were the only team in the NFL to visit him. Starr would later throw Bratkowski under the bus and say he knew Campbell had an arm issue, but Zeke wanted him.
Personally, I think this was the biggest draft blunder in all of Packer history. Not Mandarich. Imagine the Packers top 5 offense in the early 80s with Ronnie Lott preventing teams from keeping up.