Best NFL Player by Jersey Number: 70

Sam Huff

Time Magazine once described Huff, who starred at linebacker for the Giants in the `50s, as a “smiling fighter fired with a devout desire to sink a thick shoulder into every ball carrier in the National Football League.” He played in six title games and five Pro Bowls. Runner-up: Art Donovan ~ Sports Illustrated


7 responses to “Best NFL Player by Jersey Number: 70

  1. Jim Brown always said that the only man who could tackle him single-handed was Sam Huff.

  2. That’s about the highest praise imaginable from Brown.

    I love Donovan, though–man, he has the stories about the old NFL.

  3. Thanks to the Internet you can listen to Sam Huff and Sonny Jurgensen call the Redskins games — about which, this great story:

    Sam’s smile, congeniality and squeaky voice belie the linebacker CBS News once miked up for a feature called, “The Violent World of Sam Huff.” He is still gruff, tough and mean enough to drop a fan. Honest.

    Two Octobers ago in Chicago, Sam says, a fan “was flippin’ a towel around outside the booth. And he was drinkin’. ” Sam asked the man, who was with two other inebriated louts, to abstain from obstructing the announcers’ view. Michael remembered the guy calling Huff an “old man,” prefacing it with a profanity.

    “The other guy shoves a big jug of beer in my face and this guy starts climbing in the booth,” Sam said. Huff responded the way he always has: he threw a roundhouse right. “I just missed him,” he says. “If I had hit him straight on, I would have killed him.”

    At that point, Sam was informed by the enraged fan that he was from West Point, he had killed people and he had planned to kill Sam.

    “Threatening me!” Sam says, incredulously. “I said, ‘Come in the booth and we’ll see who leaves alive. I could handle you. I don’t care if you graduated from West Point.’ ”

    The fracas lasted three full minutes, until the man pounded a glass partition with his West Point ring and bloodied his finger. When security arrived, they found Sonny soaked in beer, too. The fans were jailed and Sam was asked if he wanted to press charges.

    “Aw, let ’em go,” he said. “They’re just fans.”

  4. By the way, that’s Roosevelt Grier in the lower portion of the photo ( #76).

  5. Dale, thought you’d enjoy that.

    George, you have to like the detail of Rosie Grier at bottom, though it does appear one of his knitting needles has lodged someplace uncomfortable.

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