George Taliaferro Passes Away at Age 91
George Taliaferro was the first African-American player ever selected in the NFL Draft. He was taken in the 13th round by the Chicago Bears in 1949 (there were 13 rounds back then?). The three-time All-American running back from Indiana University was part of the Hoosiers’ 1945 undefeated team – the only unbeaten team in the program’s history – and he was one special player.
In the NFL, Taliaferro was a swiss army knife. The guy played seven different positions. Seven!
In his six years in the league, he rushed for 2,666 yards and 15 touchdowns, amassed 1,300 yards receiving and another 12 receiving touchdowns, and he threw for 1,633 yards and 10 touchdowns… Wow.
He played for the New York Yanks, Dallas Texans, Baltimore Colts and Philadelphia Eagles. He was a three-time Pro Bowler and a true trailblazer. Taliaferro was inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame in 1981. What an underdog story.