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Class of 2018 Finalist Spotlight: Jerry Kramer

Class of 2018 Finalist Spotlight: Jerry Kramer

01/25/2018
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Green Bay Packers legend Jerry Kramer was named a senior finalist in August. If elected, he would become Green Bay’s 25th individual in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The Packers’ total is second in league history behind only the Chicago Bears (27 inductees). He would also become the 18th Guard enshrined.

Kramer overcame a series of childhood injuries to become an excellent football ball player at the University of Idaho. The guard was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the fourth round (39th player overall) of the 1958 NFL Draft. He starred for the Green Bay Packers from 1958 to 1968 playing most of his 11-season career under the direction of Hall of Fame Coach Vince Lombardi.

Upon his entry into the NFL, he soon was hailed as one of the best blockers in the game and earned his first All-NFL acclaim in 1960, the same year the Packers lost to the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL championship game. That game ended up as Kramer’s only career postseason loss.

He continued his high level of play all while overcoming several debilitating injuries. In 1961, he missed several games due to a broken ankle that required a permanent pin to heal. Then, in 1964, he missed most of the season due to intestinal infections from wood splinters in his abdomen that required eight surgeries to rectify. In each instance, he returned to All-NFL form.

Kramer played 130 games as the Packers guard and served as the team’s placekicker for several seasons. His leadership and talents helped the franchise capture five NFL championships and victories in Super Bowls I and II.

At the time of his retirement in 1968, he held the NFL Championship Game record for most field goal attempts in a single game (five against the New York Giants in 1962) and the Packers’ team record for most PATs in a season (43 in 1963).

He earned All-NFL acclaim five times (1960, 1962-63, 1966-67) and was voted to three Pro Bowls. Kramer was also named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1960s, the NFL’s 50th Anniversary Team in 1969 and the Super Bowl Silver Anniversary Team.

Kramer enjoys writing and published books about the Packers while playing for the team. He continued to write after football and even released a CD set that includes Hall of Famer Vince Lombardi’s final locker room address as the Packers head coach following Super Bowl II.

 

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