Marty Schottenheimer, former NFL head coach, dies at 77

Marty Schottenheimer, the longtime NFL head coach who came agonizingly close to reaching the Super Bowl several times only to fall short, has died at the age of 77. 

Schottenheimer died Monday night while in hospice care in Charlotte, North Carolina. His family shared the news through Bob Moore, former Kansas City Chiefs publicist, according to the Associated Press. 

Schottenheimer served as head coach in Cleveland, Kansas City, Washington and San Diego over 21 seasons from 1984-2006, compiling a regular season record of 200-126-1 (.613) and reaching the postseason 13 times. He is one of eight head coaches in NFL history to reach the 200-win mark. However, he is the only non-active coach in that group who’s not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. 

Schottenheimer was known as a “player’s coach,” forming deep bonds with those who shared a locker room with him. He was famous for his motivational speeches and phrases — among them: “There’s a gleam, men! There’s a gleam. Let’s get the gleam.”

Throughout his career, Schottenheimer’s teams were a model of consistency. Only twice in 21 seasons did they post a losing record.

Despite all his successes — which included eight division titles, 13 playoff berths and one coach of the year award — Schottenheimer will be remembered most for the painful, often soul-crushing losses his teams suffered in the playoffs.

In 10 seasons under head coach Marty Schottenheimer, the Kansas City Chiefs finished first or second in the AFC West division nine times.

Martin Edward Schottenheimer was born September 23, 1943 in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania.

He played linebacker at the University of Pittsburgh and was selected in both the NFL and the AFL drafts in 1965. He chose to sign with the AFL’s Buffalo Bills, where he was named to the AFL All-Star team in his first season. 

Schottenheimer played five more seasons, three with the Bills and two with the Boston Patriots, before his playing career came to an end. 

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