Otto Graham, 1921-2003

12/17/2003

Legendary Hall of Fame quarterback Otto Graham died today at the age of 82.

“We were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Otto Graham, a beloved friend and one of the game’s greatest stars,” commented Hall of Fame President John Bankert.  “An absolute model of character and integrity, Otto was a loving husband, father, and friend, who will be missed by all who knew him.”

Graham was one of the most proficient passers in the history of professional football during his years the Cleveland Browns from 1946 to 1955.  He guided the team to a division or league crown in each of his 10 seasons. 

With Graham at the helm, Cleveland dominated the All-America Football Conference during its four seasons in existence by compiling an incredible 52-4-3 record and four league championships.

Guy Chamberlin
Paddy Driscoll
Dan Fortmann
Otto Graham
Sid Luckman
Steve Van Buren
Bob Waterfield
Graham and the Browns joined the National Football League in 1950 and the success continued. The Browns claimed the league title that season as Otto led Cleveland to a 30-28 win over the Rams in the 1950 Championship Game by throwing four touchdown passes.

In 1954, Graham again led the Browns to the world title with perhaps his finest game he ever played.  In the title game that year, he ran for three scores and threw three touchdown passes as Cleveland blew out the Detroit Lions, 56-10, in what was believed to be the final game of his career.

However, Graham was lured back from retirement by Paul Brown in 1955.  Again, Graham led the Browns to the league title and capped his Hall of Fame career with 38-14 win over the Rams in the championship game as he passed for two touchdowns and threw for two touchdowns.

His career numbers, including his four seasons in the AAFC, read 1,464 of 2,626 for 23,584 yards, 174 touchdowns and 135 interceptions.  His career passer rating of 86.6 has stood the test of time and continues to rank among the best of all-time.

Graham was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on September 12, 1965. 

 Otto Graham's bio

 PHOTO GALLERY: Otto Graham

Otto Graham's Career Statistics
Year Team
G
Att.
Comp.
Pct.
Yds.
TD
Int
Rating
No.
Yds.
Avg.
TD
1946 Cleveland - AAFC
14
174
95
54.6
1834
17
5
112.1
30
-125
-4.2
1
1947 Cleveland - AAFC
14
269
163
60.6
2753
25
11
109.2
19
72
3.8
1
1948 Cleveland - AAFC
14
333
173
52.0
2713
25
15
85.6
23
146
6.3
6
1949 Cleveland - AAFC
12
285
161
56.5
2785
19
10
97.5
27
107
4.0
3
1950 Cleveland
12
253
137
54.2
1943
14
20
64.7
55
145
2.6
6
1951 Cleveland
12
265
147
55.5
2205
17
16
79.2
35
29
0.8
3
1952 Cleveland
12
364
181
49.7
2816
20
24
66.6
42
130
3.1
4
1953 Cleveland
12
258
167
64.7
2722
11
9
99.7
43
143
3.3
6
1954 Cleveland
12
240
142
59.2
2092
11
17
73.5
63
114
1.8
8
1955 Cleveland
12
185
98
53
1721
15
8
94
68
121
1.8
6
   
Career Total (AAFC)
54
1061
592
55.8
10,085
86
41
99.1
99
200
2.0
11
Career Total (NFL)
72
1565
872
55.7
13,499
88
94
78.2
306
682
2.2
33
Career Total
126
2626
1464
55.8
23,584
174
135
86.6
405
882
2.2
44
                           
Additional AAFC Statistics: Punt Returns: 23-262; Interceptions: 7-102, 1 TD
Additional NFL Statistics: Fumble Recovery for TD: 1

 

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