Former Green Bay Packers Lew Carpenter and Ken Iman both passed away this past weekend.
Carpenter, who was 78, was an offensive role player on head coach Vince Lombardi’s first five teams from 1959 to 1963. Lombardi traded wideout Billy Howton to Cleveland for Carpenter and DE Bill Quinlan in ’59, and Carpenter played receiver, tight end, halfback and fullback. He also went on to become a Packers assistant coach, mentoring the receivers for 11 seasons from 1975 to 1985.
Statistically as a player, Carpenter compiled 64 carries for 359 yards and a touchdown plus 17 receptions for 213 yards on offense for the Packers. As a return man, he brought back 28 punts for 339 yards and 18 kickoffs for 348 yards.
As the Packers’ receivers coach, he was credited by Pro Football Hall of Famer James Lofton for being one of the more influential coaches in his career.
Carpenter played for both the Detroit Lions and Cleveland Browns before coming to Green Bay. Originally drafted by the Lions in 1953, Carpenter played for the University of Arkansas. Following his playing career, he spent 30 years as an assistant coach in the NFL, working for the Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons, St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Oilers, Detroit Lions and Philadelphia Eagles in addition to the Packers. He retired in 1994.
Iman, who was 71, was a teammate of Carpenter’s, playing four seasons from 1960-63 as a backup center to Hall of Famer Jim Ringo. He joined the Packers as a non-drafted rookie out of Southeast Missouri State in 1960.
Iman was traded to the Los Angeles Rams in 1964 for quarterback Zeke Bratkowski and he went on to start at center for the Rams for 10 seasons, retiring in 1974. Following his playing days, Iman was the offensive line coach for the Philadelphia Eagles for 11 years (1976-86) and then worked in the team’s front office.
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