“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.
Steve Van Buren
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