Spring Bank president to work NFL playoff game

Last updated on July 3rd, 2019 at 07:17 pm

While Dave Schuelke, president and chief executive officer of Brookfield-based Spring Bank, is a devoted Packers fan, he doesn’t cheer during many of the games.

As a coach to quarterback communication official working for the National Football League (NFL) at Lambeau Field, Schuelke must remain professional and attentive play by play.

“It’s a different mindset or focus because you have to be ready for the next play,” Schuelke said. “You’re kind of alert. You can’t take a break. You can’t high five.”

Schuelke’s work for the NFL will take him to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. this Sunday to work the AFC Divisional playoffs in the Texans vs. Patriots game. This playoff game will be the first Schuelke will work outside Green Bay and Chicago.

Schuelke’s position, which he has held the past 18 years, focuses on communication between coaches and quarterbacks as coaches on the sidelines call in plays to quarterbacks on the field. He monitors communication between coaches and quarterbacks, cutting communication capabilities off when necessary.

According to Schuelke, a coach can only talk to a quarterback until the snap of the ball. He cuts communication off during plays and frees the communication line once a play is over – all through the press of a button.

“Once the ball snaps, I cut off the communication or if there’s 15 second left in the play clock,” Schuelke said. “Whichever comes first, I cut them off.”

Schuelke also serves as backup running the game clock and works every game with a game clock official and play clock official. The NFL has a three-person crew like Schuelke’s in each of its teams’ cities.

Schuelke typically works eight season games and two preseason games at Lambeau Field. He has worked two playoff games in Chicago in the past.

His selection to this Sunday’s playoff game is based off the quality of his performance at Lambeau and the Packers’ involvement in the playoffs. The NFL tends to use crews working under teams in the playoffs, he said.

As an NFL employee, Schuelke has gained an inside look at what happens behind the scenes on game days.

“Everything has a procedure,” Schuelke said. “The NFL makes sure everything is done the same way during every game. They’re very careful, very particular.”

Schuelke must arrive at least two hours ahead of each game and meet with field officials, the line judge and the back judge to run through a standard checklist and touch base about the clock.

Everything is planned out, orchestrated and choreographed during the game, he said.

The biggest challenge to his job is being accurate during each individual play.

“In this case, you’re striving to be perfect every play, every time,” he said.

But it is a challenge he is proud to take on.

“I’m a sports fan, and I’m proud to be part of it,” Schuelke said. “We take pride in doing it right and doing our jobs well.”

Sign up for BizTimes Daily Alerts

Stay up-to-date on the people, companies and issues that impact business in Milwaukee and Southeast Wisconsin

No posts to display