Lebeau Honored as "Hometown Hall of Famer"

Joe Robbins

Lebeau receives "Hometown Hall of Fame" award in hometown of London, OH. The award is presented by Allstate Insurance.

Dick Lebeau will be honored as a "Hometown Hall of Famer" by the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company in London, OH on February 20, 2013. London High School students, faculty, staff, as well as Lebeau's close friends and family will be in attendance. As part of the ceremony, Lebeau will receive a plaque as well as a roadsign in London, OH.

Lebeau was inducted into the Pro Football HOF in 2010 as a player for the Detroit Lions. In his 14-season career he accumulated 62 Interceptions (7th most all-time) and attended 3 Pro Bowls. After his playing career ended, he entered coaching where he spent the majority of that career with the Bengals (1980-91, 1997-2002) and the Steelers (1992-1996, 2004-present)

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He is credited with inventing the "Fire Zone" or "Zone Blitz" scheme which revolutionized NFL defenses.

It was a thought process kind of born out of necessity. It was basically an outcropping of the run-and-shoot [offense] that was becoming pretty prevalent in the league back then. We were in the same division as Houston, and they were tremendous at it with Moon and Co. Then the West Coast offense was spreading throughout the league. Those were all quick-rhythm, get-the-ball-out-of-your-hands-and-cut-up-the-defense types of passing games. We were just looking for ways to get pressure without exposing our defensive backs to have to cover the whole field all of the time."

Although Lebeau's record as Head Coach with the Bengals was only 12-33, he is widely considered the best Defensive Coordinator of all-time and could become the first player inducted into the Pro HOF as a player and coach. He also has the distinction of entering the Hall of Fame primarily as an assistant coach and not as a head coach.

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