Bednarik didn’t really get into football until he returned from World War II (after a 30-mission tour as a B-24 waist gunner with the Army Air Corps that saw him win the Air Medal).
Bednarik showed up unheralded at the University of Pennsylvania, where he went on to win All-America honors as a center his last two seasons.
Chuck Bednarik was selected first overall in the 1949 NFL Draft as the Eagles' bonus draft choice.
As an offensive center, big Chuck was a bulldozing blocker, both on rushing and passing plays.
In 1950, Bednarik received All-NFL recognition as a center.
His athletic abilities and inspirational play was particularly evident in 1960 when injuries forced the Eagles to ask their 12-year veteran to again play both sides of the line. The 35-year-old was sensational.
On defense, he was a true scientist in his field and the kind of tackler who could literally stop even the finest enemy runners "on a dime."
No National Football League player in the 1950s was immune to bone-jarring contact with the Philadelphia Eagles' Chuck Bednarik because the 233-pounder played on both the offensive and defensive units long after the two-way player had largely faded from the scene.
Bednarik played in eight Pro Bowls.
Bednarik was named All-NFL Nine times.
Bednarik was the NFL's last "iron man" star.
Bednarik giving a speech during his Enshrinement Ceremony in 1967.
Bednarik during his Enshrinement Ceremony with presenter, Hall of Famer and former Eagles coach Earle "Greasy" Neale.
Bednarik at a Hall of Fame autograph session.
Bednarik with his bust on display at the Hall of Fame.
Bednarik at an Enshrinement Festival in Canton.
Bednarik poses with students during his “Hometown Hall of Famer” Ceremony at his former high school in Bethlehem, Penn.
Bednarik's Hall of Fame mural
Bednarik's Hall of Fame bust.