FRANK GIFFORD

FRANK GIFFORD

Class of 1977
Halfback, Flanker >>> 6-1, 197
(Southern California)
1952-1960, 1962-1964 New York Giants

Frank Newton Gifford ... All-American at USC ... No. 1 draft pick, 1952 ... Starred on both offense, defense, 1953 ... All-NFL four years ... NFL Player of Year, 1956 ... In seven Pro Bowls, playing defensive back, halfback, flanker ... Retired in 1961, came back as flanker, 1962 ... Totaled 9,862 combined yards ... Record includes 3,609 yards rushing, 367 receptions, 484 points ... Born August 16, 1930, in Santa Monica, California.

By the time that Frank Gifford joined the New York Giants as their No. 1 draft choice in 1952 he had already experienced unusual gridiron success in both high school and college. At the University of Southern California, Frank played both offense and defense and had won All-America honors as a senior.

It took only a few days for Giants coach Steve Owen to realize he had a prize as Gifford could run, pass, catch, play defensive back, and return punts and kicks. In 1953, he even played two ways in an era of one-platoon specialists, averaging almost 50 minutes every game.

In 1956, he was the NFL's Most Valuable Player as he paced the Giants to a league championship. Six times he was named first- or second-team All-NFL. Then in 1960, a severe head injury suffered in a game against the Philadelphia Eagles put Frank on the sidelines.

When he decided to retire before the 1961 season, there was every reason to believe the sparkling Gifford era was over. But in 1962 he returned to the game he loved. Facing and conquering the dual problems of regaining his touch after a long layoff and of learning a new position – he was switched from halfback to flanker to take advantage of his great pass-catching skills – Gifford attained star status once again.

No better yardstick of Frank's great versatility can be gained than from his eight Pro Bowl selections. He was named to the Pro Bowl at three different positions – first as a defensive back, then as an offensive halfback; and last as a flanker in 1964.

The Giants won big during the Gifford years and, while the team was loaded with many great pro football names, no one played a more dynamic role, year in and year out, in bringing the Giants success than did Frank Gifford.

Year
Team

G

No.
Yds.
Avg.
TD
No.
Yds.
Avg.
TD
1952 New York

10

38
116
3.1
0
5
36
7.2
0
1953 New York

12

50
157
3.1
2
18
292
16.2
4
1954 New York

9

66
368
5.6
2
14
154
11.0
1
1955 New York

11

86
351
4.1
3
33
437
13.2
4
1956 New York

12

159
819
5.2
5
51
603
11.8
4
1957 New York

12

136
528
3.9
5
41
588
14.3
4
1958 New York

10

115
468
4.1
8
29
330
11.4
2
1959 New York

11

106
540
5.1
3
42
768
18.3
4
1960 New York

8

77
232
3.0
4
24
344
14.3
3
1962 New York

14

2
18
9.0
1
39
796
20.4
7
1963 New York

14

4
10
2.5
0
42
657
15.6
7
1964 New York

13

1
2
2.0
1
29
429
14.8
3
Career Total

136

840
3609
4.3
34
367
5434
14.8
43
Additional Career Statistics: Passing: 63-29-823, 14 TDs, 6 Int; Scoring: 78 TDs, 2-7 FG, 10-11 XP; Punt Returns: 21-113; Kickoff Returns: 23-594; Interceptions: 2-112, 1 TD

Full Name: Frank Newton Gifford

Birthdate: August 16, 1930

Birthplace: Santa Monica, California

High School: Bakersfield (Calif.)

Elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame: January 8, 1977

Enshrined into Pro Football Hall of Fame: July 30, 1977

Presenter: Wellington T. Mara, President Giants

Other Members of Class of 1977: Forrest Gregg, Gale Sayers, Bart Starr, Bill Willis

Pro Career: 12 seasons, 136 games

Drafted: 1st round (11th player overall) in 1952 by New York Giants

Uniform Number: 16

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