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Former Bear George Blanda Dead At 83

Via tweet from WBBM Radio’s Steve Grzanich:

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BREAKING: Hall of Fame quarterback and George Blanda has died. He was 83. Played for #Chicago Bears for 10 seasons.

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There’s an extra “and” in there, but you get the message. Blanda was better known as a placekicker for the Oakland Raiders in the late 1960s and early 1970s, but he was a QB and kicker for the Bears from 1949-1958. George Halas, thinking he was washed up at age 31, let him go after the 1958 season. Two years later he resurfaced with the Houston Oilers in the new American Football League and led them to the AFL title in 1960 and 1961.

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Blanda played until age 48, in 1975, and was named NFL Player of the Year in 1970.

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Here are Blanda’s career statistics; you don’t see players like this any more, who were successful at multiple positions.