Don Coryell passed away today. He was 85.
The passing game is what makes the modern NFL so great, and there was no great innovator of the modern passing attack than former-Chargers head coach Don Coryell. The man invented "Air Coryell," a pass-first offense that took full advantage of the NFL's rules changes in the mid-1970s, allowing teams to use the pass to gain significant chuncks of yardage instead of running the football.
Coryell's offense was the precursor to the famed "West Coast offense" of the San Fransisco 49ers in the 1980s.
If not for Coryell's innovations, we would not have the modern passing attack we know and love today in Indianapolis with Peyton Manning.
Rest in peace, coach. Hopefully, the ridiculous Hall of Fame voters will wake up and finally induct you into Canton in 2011. It's long overdue.