By Kris Leonhardt
GREEN BAY – During halftime of the Dec. 3 Packers-Kansas City Chiefs game, the Pro Football Hall of Fame honored three posthumously-enshrined inductees — Vince Lombardi, Henry Jordan and Bobby Dillon — during a “Ring of Excellence” presentation.
In November 2022, Hall of Fame officials changed the organization’s policy for those posthumously-enshrined to allow family members — spouse, adult child or parent — to receive the enshrinement ring.
Previously, the Ring of Excellence was just awarded to living enshrinees.
The ring is made of 14K gold with 1.75 carats in diamonds and is awarded along with a Hall of Fame Gold Jacket and a bronze bust of the player.
“The mission of the Pro Football Hall of Fame is to honor the greatest of the game, preserve its history, promote its values and celebrate excellence together. Today, we celebrate that excellence and honor Green Bay Packers’ greats… Bobby, Henry and Coach are three of 371 who have earned election into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. They each live on in our memories and are represented here today by their families,” said Pro Football Hall of Fame Chief Relationship Officer Adrian Allison.
Each of the three rings was presented to a family member on Dec. 3.
Lombardi was inducted with the class of 1971; his ring was presented to John Lombardi, Vince’s grandson, who accepted it on behalf of Vince Lombardi, Jr.
Lombardi’s career was summed up by presenter Wellington Mara, during the 1971 induction speech, “Vince Lombardi did not invent professional football and he did not find the National Football League, but he embellished both of them to a degree never surpassed and seldom, if ever, equaled. He made winners out of his players and losers out of his opponent. He won two Super Bowls in succession, he won three consecutive National Football League championships, and neither of those have ever been attained before or since; he won five National Football League championships in seven years. He lost a playoff game once in 1960 and never lost another,” he stated.
Jordan was inducted with the class of 1995; his ring was presented to Henry Jordan, Jr., Jordan’s son.
Don Kovach, Jordan’s enshrinement presenter in 1995, said that he was “anchored at the right defensive tackle spot and the Packers became a dynasty, winning six divisional titles, five NFL championships and the first two Super Bowls. Jordan was an All-Pro pick six times and played in five Pro Bowls — one in which he was chosen the outstanding defensive lineman. He missed just two games in his first 12 of 13 pro seasons.
Dillon was inducted with the class of 2020; his ring was presented to Dillon’s daughter, Karen Gooch.
In his rookie year, Dillon led the team with four interceptions, playing all 12 games. He garnered nine interceptions during the season in 1953, 1955 and 1957 and seven in 1954 and 1956.
The Packers’ safety played in four consecutive pro bowls — 1566, 1957, 1958 and 1959.
“This great game is built upon the shoulders of men like Bobby, Henry and Coach,” Allison said.