This Week in NFL History: March 12 through March 18

This Week in NFL History
Green Bay Packers running back Paul Hornung (left) and Detroit Lions defensive tackle Alex Karras (right) were indefinitely suspended by NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle for betting on NFL games, including games their respective teams participated in. Hornung and Karras were reinstated Mar. 16, 1964 after missing the entire 1963 season. Photo: AP in English

Relive and recapture iconic moments. Discover that you or a loved one share a birthday with a football legend. Recall an anniversary of an event that forever changed the landscape of the NFL and had a profound impact on your life. It’s all here in This Week in NFL History.

This Week in NFL History is a weekly article that will look back at some of the most memorable events that have occurred during this week historically in professional football. Each nugget is a tidbit of information that is connected to the NFL through history.


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This Week in NFL History

March 12

1958:  Linebacker Matt Millen (Raiders: 1980-88, 49ers: 1989-90, Redskins: 1991) born in Whitehall Township, Pennsylvania
1968:  Safety Merton Hanks (49ers: 1991-98, Seahawks: 1999) born in Dallas Texas
1979:  Defensive tackle Shaun Rogers (Lions: 2001-07, Browns: 2008-10, Saints: 2011, Giants: 2012-13) born in Houston, Texas
1981:  Quarterback Jonathan Paul “J.P.” Losman (Bills: 2004-09, Raiders: 2009, Seahawks: 2010, Dolphins: 2011) born in Los Angeles, California
1990:  Linebacker Dont’a Hightower (Patriots: 2012-16) born in Lewisburg, Tennessee
1990:  Wide receiver Marvin Jones (Bengals: 2012-15, Lions: 2016-present) born in Los Angeles, California
1993:  Safety Jermaine Whitehead (Ravens: 2015, Packers: 2016-present) born in Greenwood, Mississippi

March 13

1918:  Hall of Fame halfback George McAfee (Bears: 1940-41, 1945-50) born in Corbin, Kentucky (d. 2009)
1960:  Chicago Cardinals relocate to St. Louis, Missouri
1960:  Expansion draft for Dallas Cowboys held
1963:  Wide receiver Vance Johnson (Broncos: 1985-93, Chargers: 1994, Broncos: 1995) born in Trenton, New Jersey
1971:  Wide receiver Curtis Conway (Bears: 1993-99, Chargers: 2000-02, Jets: 2003, 49ers: 2004) born in Los Angeles, California
1972:  Quarterback Trent Dilfer (Buccaneers: 1994-99, Ravens; 2000, Seahawks: 2001-04, Browns: 2005, 49ers: 2006-07) born in Santa Cruz, California
1973:  Defensive tackle Dan “Big Daddy” Wilkinson (Bengals: 1994-97, Redskins: 1998-2002, Lions: 2003-05, Dolphins: 2006) born in Dayton, Ohio
1990:  Nose tackle Marcell Dareus (Bills: 2011-present) born in Birmingham, Alabama
1992:  Linebacker Jelani Jenkins (Dolphins: 2013-16) born in Rockville, Maryland
2010:  Linebacker Cliff Livingston (Giants: 1954-61, Vikings: 1962, Rams: 1963-65) dies at age 79 in Las Vegas, Nevada (b. 1930)

March 14

1925:  Owner William Clay Ford Sr. (Lions: 1963-2014) born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2014)
1925:  Walter Camp, Father of American Football, dies at age 65 in New York City (b. 1859)
1964:  Defensive end Donald Evans (Rams: 1987, Eagles: 1988, Steelers: 1990-93, Jets: 1994-95) born in Raleigh, North Carolina
1967:  First AFL/NFL common draft held at Gotham Hotel in New York City. Michigan State defensive end Charles “Bubba” Smith selected first overall by Baltimore Colts
1969:  Linebacker Greg Biekert (Raiders: 1993-2001, Vikings: 2002-03) born in Iowa City, Iowa
1972:  Running back Antowain Smith (Bills: 1997-2000, Patriots: 2001-03, Titans: 2004, Saints: 2005) born in Millbrook, Alabama
1972:  Defensive end Len Ford (Browns: 1950-57, Packers: 1958) dies at age 46 in Detroit, Michigan (b. 1926)
1978:  NFL adds side judge as seventh official
1979:  Safety Deon Grant (Panthers: 2000-03, Jaguars: 2004-06, Seahawks: 2007-09, Giants: 2010-11) born in Augusta, Georgia
1982:  Linebacker Daryl Smith (Jaguars: 2004-12, Ravens: 2013-15, Buccaneers: 2016-present) born in Albany, Georgia
1984:  Linebacker Ahmad Brooks (Bengals: 2006-07, 49ers: 2008-present) born in Fairfax, Virginia
1994:  Cornerback Tavon Young (Ravens: 2016-present) born in Oxon Hill, Maryland
2000:  Defensive end Paul Smith (Broncos: 1968-78, Redskins: 1979-80) dies at age 54 in Aurora, Colorado (b. 1945)

March 15

1925:  Hall of Fame quarterback Norm “The Dutchman” Van Brocklin (Rams: 1949-57, Eagles: 1958-60) born in Parade, South Dakota (d. 1983)
1931:  Head coach Ted Marchibroda (Colts: 1975-79, Colts: 1992-95, Ravens: 1996-98) born in Franklin, Pennsylvania (d. 2016)
1956:  Linebacker Clay Matthews Jr. (Browns: 1978-93, Falcons: 1994-96) born in Palo Alto, California
1959:  Running back/return specialist Lyvonia “Stump” Mitchell (Cardinals: 1981-89, Chiefs: 1990) born in Kingsland, Georgia
1969:  Safety Louis Riddick (Falcons: 1992, Browns: 1993-95, Falcons: 1996, Raiders: 1998) born in Quakertown, Pennsylvania
1972:  Head coach Mike Tomlin (Steelers: 2007-present) born in Hampton, Virginia
1977:  Defensive tackle Marques Douglas (Ravens: 1999, Saints: 2000, Ravens: 2001-04, 49ers: 2005-07, Ravens: 2008, Jets: 2009, Titans: 2010) born in Greensboro, North Carolina
1985:  Tight end Jacob Tamme (Colts: 2008-11, Broncos: 2012-14, Falcons: 2015-present) born in Danville, Kentucky
1987:  Wide receiver Eric Decker (Broncos: 2010-13, Jets: 2014-present) born in Cold Spring, Minnesota
1988:  St. Louis Cardinals relocate to Phoenix, Arizona
1991:  Wide receiver/return specialist Tavon Austin (Rams: 2013-present) born in Baltimore, Maryland
1992:  Running back Devonta Freeman (Falcons: 2014-present) born in Baxley, Georgia
2015:  Defensive tackle Bob Toneff (49ers: 1952-58, Redskins: 1959-64) dies at age 84 in San Anselmo, California (b. 1930)

March 16

1956:  Hall of Fame tight end Ozzie Newsome (Browns: 1978-90) born in Muscle Shoals, Alabama
1964:  Packers running back Paul Hornung and Lions defensive tackle Alex Karras reinstated by commissioner Pete Rozelle after indefinite suspension for placing bets on NFL games
1966:  Quarterback Rodney Peete (Lions: 1989-93, Cowboys: 1994, Eagles: 1995-98, Redskins: 1999, Raiders: 2000-01, Panthers: 2002-04) born in Mesa, Arizona
1967:  Defensive lineman Dan Owens (Lions: 1990-95, Falcons: 1996-97, Lions: 1998-99) born in Whittier, California
1969:  Cornerback Steve Israel (Rams: 1992-94, 49ers: 1995-96, Patriots: 1997-99, Saints: 2000-01) born in Camden, New Jersey
1980:  Tight end Todd Heap (Ravens: 2001-10, Cardinals: 2011-12) born in Mesa, Arizona
1983:  Cornerback Tramon Williams (Packers: 2006-14, Browns: 2015-16) born in Houma, Louisiana
1991:  Kicker Chris Boswell (Steelers: 2015-present) born in Fort Worth, Texas
2005:  Safety Todd Bell (Bears: 1981-87, Eagles: 1988-89) dies at age 46 in Reynoldsburg, Ohio (b. 1958)
2008:  Cornerback Wayne Davis (Chargers: 1985-86, Bills: 1987-89, Redskins: 1990-91) dies at age 44 in Auburn, Georgia (b. 1963)

March 17

1907:  Owner David Abraham “Sonny” Werblin (Titans/Jets: 1962-68) born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1991)
1914:  Hall of Fame quarterback Samuel “Slingin’ Sammy” Baugh (Redskins: 1937-52) born in Temple, Texas (d. 2008)
1933:  Linebacker Tom Bettis (Packers: 1955-61, Steelers: 1962, Bears: 1963) born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2015)
1946:  Defensive tackle Earl Edwards (49ers: 1969-72, Bills: 1973-75, Browns: 1976-78, Packers: 1979) born in Statesboro, Georgia
1953:  Running back Harry “Chuck” Muncie (Saints: 1976-80, Chargers: 1980-84) born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania (d. 2013)
1973:  Safety Jerome Woods (Chiefs: 1996-2005) born in Memphis, Tennessee
1987:  Wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (Steelers: 2010-13, Broncos: 2014-present) born in Bellville, Texas
1990:  Defensive end Lawrence Guy (Packers: 2011-12, Colts: 2012-13, Chargers: 2013-14, Ravens: 2014-16, Patriots: 2017-present) born in Las Vegas, Nevada
1991:  Wide receiver/return specialist Cordarrelle Patterson (Vikings: 2013-16) born in Rock Hill, South Carolina
2005:  Running back Prentice Gautt (Browns: 1960, Cardinals: 1961-67) dies at age 67 in Lawrence, Kansas (b. 1938)
2005:  Linebacker David Little (Steelers: 1981-92) dies at age 46 in Miami. Florida (b. 1959)
2009:  Offensive lineman Dale Memmelaar (Cardinals: 1959-61, Cowboys: 1962-63, Browns: 1964-65, Colts: 1966-67) dies at age 72 in Cornwall, New York (b. 1937)

March 18

1905:  Hall of Fame quarterback Benny Friedman (Cleveland Bulldogs: 1927, Detroit Wolverines: 1928, Giants: 1929-31, Brooklyn Dodgers: 1932-34) born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 1982)
1927:  Journalist and author George Plimpton (Paper Lion) born in New York City (d. 2015)
1943:  Running back Dave Osborn (Vikings: 1965-75, Packers: 1976) born in Everett, Washington
1952:  Hall of Fame center Mike Webster (Steelers: 1974-88, Chiefs: 1989-90) born in Tomahawk, Wisconsin (d. 2002)
1954:  Defensive back Beasley Reece (Cowboys: 1976, Giants: 1977-83, Buccaneers: 1983-84) born in Waco, Texas
1961:  Running back Curt Warner (Seahawks: 1983-89, Rams: 1990) born in Wyoming, West Virginia
1967:  Wide receiver Andre Rison (Colts: 1989, Falcons: 1990-94, Browns: 1995, Jaguars: 1996, Packers: 1996, Chiefs: 1997-99, Raiders: 2000) born in Flint, Michigan
1968:  Safety Pat Terrell (Rams: 1990-93, Jets: 1994, Panthers: 1995-97, Packers: 1998) born in Memphis, Tennessee
1970:  NFL retained Wilson as manufacturer of official game ball (AFL’s official game ball was made by Spalding) and stadium’s scoreboard clock became official game clock
1973:  Quarterback Rob Johnson (Jaguars: 1995-97, Bills: 1998-2001, Buccaneers: 2002, Redskins: 2003, Raiders: 2003) born in Compton, California
1975:  Quarterback Brian Griese (Broncos: 1998-2002, Dolphins: 2003, Buccaneers: 2004-05, Bears: 2006-07, Buccaneers: 2008) born in Miami, Florida
1986:  Cornerback Darius Butler (Patriots: 2009-10, Colts: 2011, Colts: 2012-present) born in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
1986:  Center Eric Wood (Bills: 2009-present) born in Cincinnati, Ohio
2011:  Wide receiver Andrew “Drew” Hill (Rams: 1979-84, Oilers: 1985-91, Falcons: 1992-93) dies at age 54 in Atlanta, Georgia (b. 1956)

– Curtis Rawls is a Managing Editor for cover32 and covers the NFL and New York Giants, like and follow on Facebook and Twitter. Curtis can be followed on Twitter @TheArmchrAnlyst.

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