Former NFL player, coach Bob Schnelker dies at 88

The NFL lost one of their own on Monday as former player and coach, Bob Schnelker, died due to complications from cancer. He was 88. 

Schnelker will go down in Vikings lore as the first player in the franchise's history to score a touchdown, a pass from Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton, against the Chicago Bears in 1961. 

The former tight end was later returned to the organization as an offensive coordinator under Jerry Burns, serving in that capacity until 1990. He then went on to become a volunteer assistant for the Minnesota Golden Gophers. 

Schnleker was drafted in the 29th round by the Browns in 1950. He then went to Philadelphia in 1953 for one season with the Eagles.

A two-time Pro Bowler, Schnleker played nine years in the NFL at tight end, amassing 3,667 yards receiving and 33 touchdowns on 211 career receptions. He spent the majority of his career with the New York Giants, winning the NFL championship in 1956. He played in Minnesota for half a season before being traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers, retiring after the 1961 season. 

After his playing career, Schnelker served as an assistant coach for several teams. He was the wide receiver/tight end coach for the Rams from 1963-1965. From 1966-1971, Schnleker was an assistant for the Packers before becoming the offensive coordinator for the Chargers in 1972. He would then become a coach for the Dolphins, Chiefs, Lions, Packers again and eventually would end his coaching career with the Vikings.

Schnelker is survived by his daughter Kristina Pinkston, three grandchildren and his brother, David. 

Our Latest Stories