Hall of Fame fullback and longtime Packers rushing leader Jim Taylor dies at age 83
Taylor led the great Packers teams of the early 1960s and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1976
The Green Bay Packers announced on Saturday that Jim Taylor, the longtime Packers fullback and Pro Football Hall of Famer, passed at away the age of 83.
"Jim Taylor lived life the same way he played football, with passion, determination and love for all he did," Pro Football Hall of Fame president and CEO David Baker said in a statement. "The entire Hall of Fame family mourns the loss of a true hero of the game and extends heartfelt condolences to his wife Helen during this difficult time. While Jim's spirit forever resides at the Hall, we will miss his smile that would light up a room.
"The Pro Football Hall of Fame will keep Jim's legacy alive so generations of fans will remember his rugged running style, ability to block, and leadership in Coach Vince Lombardi's 'run to daylight' philosophy that made him the first from the Lombardi-era Packers to earn a place in Canton. Jim Taylor's accomplishments on the football field and throughout his life represent values like commitment, teamwork, sacrifice, and passion that serve as inspiration to us all."
Taylor, a second-round pick in 1958, won four championships during his career, including Super Bowl I. He was five-time Pro Bowler (1961-65, all seasons during which he ran for at least 1,000 yards), an All-Pro, the 1962 NFL MVP, and the MVP of the 1965 NFL Championship Game. He was also named to the 1960s NFL All-Decade Team.
During his Packers career, he gained 8,207 yards at an average of 4.5 per carry, while also scoring 81 touchdowns -- second in Packers franchise history at the time he retired. He was also the NFL's second all-time leading rusher (8,597 yards, including the 390 he gained during his final season with the New Orleans Saints) upon his retirement, behind only Jim Brown. Taylor held the Packers' team rushing title until 2006, when it was broken by Ahman Green.
"That son-of-a-gun is the toughest son-of-a-gun in the league," former teammate Paul Hornung once said of Taylor, per the Packers' website. "I've seen him run over guys 30 or 40 pounds bigger than he is like that (snap of a finger). Jimmy Brown may be the best all-around athlete I've seen, but he doesn't have Taylor's desire."
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