BOSTON -- From his den in Huntsville, Alabama, Onree Jackson will quietly root to see Jacoby Brissett under center when he watches New England host Houston on Thursday night. NFL Jerseys Authentic Cheap .Almost 50 years have passed, but Jackson still remembers his excitement when he was drafted out of Alabama A&M in 1969 by the Boston Patriots -- the franchises first black quarterback.Back then, the team hailed his potential to be the Willie Mays of pro football. But he never played in a regular-season NFL game.Now, Brissett could establish a footnote for a franchise born in a city with a complicated racial past, its first African-American player to start at quarterback. While the Patriots have been racially progressive in other ways, the New York Giants are the only other NFL team to have never started an African-American quarterback.Brissetts opportunity comes because of two unusual factors. Tom Brady, the teams cornerstone, is suspended four games for his role in using underinflated footballs in the playoffs in 2015. And Bradys backup, Jimmy Garoppolo, has a shoulder injury and is listed as doubtful for Thursday.While none have started a regular-season game, the Patriots have drafted eight African-American quarterbacks. Michael Bishop played the most, appearing in eight games in 2000.The potential distinction shows how much things have changed in 50 years.When I got there, there was a baseball player with the Red Sox and he said in the paper, `You know theyre not going to have an N-word quarterback here in Boston, Jackson, 69, recalled in an interview with The Associated Press.It was funny to him, I think, because they had a picture of him laughing in the papers, Jackson said. I had a shot, and I didnt make it under their rules.Bostons professional teams -- like the citys neighborhoods -- had different reactions to the civil rights movement and the integration of professional sports.While the Celtics and Bruins broke barriers in pro basketball and hockey, the Red Sox were the last Major League Baseball team to field a black player. Pumpsie Green took the field at Fenway Park in 1959 -- more than a decade after Jackie Robinson played for the Dodgers and even after Willie ORee took the ice for Boston in the all-white NHL. The Red Sox gave both Robinson and Mays tryouts in the 1940s before opting not to sign them.Meanwhile, the Patriots neither led nor trailed the pack on such issues.Jackson was drafted by Rommie Loudd, the AFLs first black assistant coach before he joined the Patriots in 1966. He moved to the teams front office and became its personnel director in 1969, one of the first black personnel directors in the NFL.Jackson said he thought everything was fine until he drew consistent ire from then-coach Clive Rush, who told Jackson: Joe wouldnt do that.He was talking about Namath, Jackson said. Me being who I am, and where I was from and all, I just accepted that and went on.Jackson was waived after a few months. Rush told the Frederick Daily Leader at the time that Jackson was behind three other quarterbacks.As Ive grown older, I can see little signs that said, `You arent going to make it because youre a black quarterback. Thats the way I interpreted it, anyway, Jackson said.Rush was fired after a losing season in 1969 and 1-6 start in 1970.New England has never had a black head coach. Romeo Crennel, now defensive coordinator in Houston, held that job in New England before he was head coach in Cleveland and Kansas City. Bobby Grier, who is black, was an assistant coach with the Patriots who rose to be vice president of player personnel from 1997-2000.Richard Johnson, curator of the Boston Sports Museum, said while the quarterback milestone would be unintentional, there has never been talk of race influencing the Pats personnel decisions.Under Bill Belichick, the best player has always played, Johnson said.Richard Lapchick, who has pushed for diversity across college and professional sports from The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sports, said the Patriots under owner Robert Kraft have consistently pushed for inclusion in several ways.They were working in the community on gender violence prevention in the early 1990s, 20 years before Ray Rice or even before O.J., Lapchick said.The Patriots were also one of the first teams to help NFL players finish their degrees.Josh Johnson, who is black and one of three Giants quarterbacks, was surprised when told his team could be the last to cross this particular racial benchmark.It shows progress, he said. Thats all you want to see, progress. Good luck to (Brissett), I hope he goes out and takes advantage of it. Opportunities come far and few.Though it didnt work out for Jackson, he said hes proud to have played a part toward seeing a day when no one notices who is or isnt under center.Its a pride thing now, he said. Im proud of what happened. Though I didnt make it, it was kind of a foot in the door type-thing.---This story has been corrected to show that Michael Bishop, not Rohan Davey, has played the most games for the Patriots as an African-American quarterback.---AP Sports Writers Jimmy Golen in Boston and Tom Canavan in East Rutherford, New Jersey, contributed to this report.---Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/khightower Wholesale Basketball Jerseys . -- Anaheim Ducks captain and leading scorer Ryan Getzlaf has been scratched from Sunday nights game against the Vancouver Canucks because of an upper-body injury. Stitched China Jerseys . The Americans, skipped by John Shuster, seized the advantage in the eighth end by scoring five points for a 7-3 lead. The Czechs pulled two back in the ninth, but Shusters team of third Jeff Isaacson, second Jared Zezel and lead John Landsteiner ended with another point to secure the last Olympic berth on offer. http://www.cheapstitchedjerseysonline.com/ . Brandon Morrow allowed five runs on six hits over three innings. He struck out two, walked one and hit a batter. Edwin Encarnacion had a two-out, bases loaded two-RBI double in the third inning. Not many coaches get to succeed where Jack Gibson has failed.Shane Flanagan can do just that - and boast one of the games great coaching achievements - if Cronulla claim their maiden premiership with a win over Melbourne in Sundays NRL grand final.Super-coach Gibson secured Parramattas first premiership success in 1981, and then made it a hat-trick of titles two years later just for good measure.Nicknamed The Guru, Gibson also ended a 40-year title drought at the Roosters in 1974 and threw in the 75 premiership as well.After his incredible success at the Eels, Gibson moved to the Shire for three seasons from 1985 to 1987 but even he couldnt deliver the Sharks their highly-sought after silverware.Cronulla qualified for the finals in the two years after Gibson left, but his longest- lasting legacy of his time there has been his immortal quote: Waiting for Cronulla to win a premiership is like leaving the porch lamp on for Harold Holt.Fittingly, Flanagan paid tribute to Gibsons long-time offsider Ron Massey for his guidance after Fridays preliminary win over premiers North Queensland.Consider what 50-year-old Flanagan has done to take his team from wooden spoon and ASADA ban ignominy to the edge of grand final glory in the space of just two years.It would have seemed nigh impossible in 2014 when he was serving his one-year suspension for governance issues from the clubs 2011 supplements program scandal.Sharks boss Lyall Gorman says Flanagan spent much of that time working on his approach to coaching.Shane came back after 12 months off, and a long time to reflect on where he was going and his style of leadership, and he has emerged as the figure we can all see now, says Gorman.There is his strong leadership, his exceptional man management skills, his passion for the clubb and the game and his vision for the future. Wholesale Stitched NFL Jerseys. Win, lose or draw he wont be satisfied on Sunday.His goal and my goal is to make this the club of choice in the NRL.He has absolute clarity about that and a great team around him.Flanagan is universally loved by his players and Gorman said he is very adept at the art of man management. Something Gibson also excelled at.He builds a tremendous rapport, Gorman says.He knows when it is time to be disciplined and strong and tough and knows there are other times when you can sit back and relax.He can take the heat out of the moment, put that anxiety aside. But he is very driven at the same time.Gorman, who joined the Sharks at the end of 2014, says Flanagan suffered before that from a lack of support.Our governance model and management model around the club has improved a lot and so no longer does it all fall on his shoulders.He probably felt back in 2013 a very large percentage of his club was on his shoulders.Along with skipper Paul Gallen, Flanagan has served as a figurehead for Cronulla through its toughest time, which including the suspension of 17 current and former players over the supplements scandal.The duo can lead the Sharks to their greatest triumph on Sunday.Since he came back (from suspension) he has been great, Gallen says of Flanagan.His recruitment has been really good.Obviously he got guys like Jack Bird and Valentine Holmes to be the players they are today.He has also set up a really good senior player squad, picking up guys like Michael Ennis and turning Wade Graham into the leader he is today.It has been a massive effort by him particularly after what he went through. 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