The Green Bay Packers of the 1990s and early 2000s certainly had some downright legendary players on their teams. Of course there are Pro Football Hall of Famers like Brett Favre, Reggie White, and LeRoy Butler that come to mind. White and Butler combined to invent perhaps the greatest touchdown celebration in the history of the NFL: the Lambeau Leap. But one other player on those teams, Packers Hall of Famer Gilbert Brown, had one of the most iconic sack celebrations of all time, “the gravedigger,” which led to his nickname. In a recent appearance on “The Cripescast” with Charlie Berens, Gilbert told the hilarious story of how the celebration started.
Green Bay Packers Legend Gilbert Brown Tells the Origin Story of “the Gravedigger”
During his interview with Charlie Berens, Gilbert was asked about how his signature sack celebration got its start. As it turns out, it started back during his college days in a game in which he was trying to impress his mom:
“You see, I’ve been fighting purple all my life. Kansas State is purple. Minnesota is purple. So we was out, and my mom came down for a game and we was playing. And I was like, ‘You got to show out for mama!’ So I was like, ‘I got to come up with something.’
“So the first time I ever did the gravedigger, I believe it was against Kansas State, and I made a sack. And I got up and I did it. But what happened was I swung my leg up to high. So I fell on my back as I did it!
“And out of 52 or 60,000 people, all I heard was my mama laughing her a– off!”
Gilbert then said he did not do the celebration again until he got to Green Bay. That is when the legendary Reggie White gave him the nickname, “The Gravedigger.”
For more fun stories from Gilbert, his take on Aaron Rodgers and the front office, and for some amazing information about what the Gilbert Brown Foundation is doing to benefit children, listen to the episode linked above.
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