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The Eagles have been to three Super Bowls in 55 years.

Claude Humphrey was on one of those teams. He had 14.5 sacks in the 1980 season that ended with the Eagles meeting the Oakland Raiders in Super Bowl XV. He added one sack in the postseason that year.

Humphrey died at the age of 77 it was announced on Saturday.

It was during that Super Bowl when Humphrey did something that he may be best remembered for when he responded to a roughing the passer penalty by picking up the flag and throwing it back at referee Ben Dreith.

One of the game’s best pass rushers, Humphrey spent most of his career with the Atlanta Falcons, who drafted him third overall in the 1968 AFL/NFL Draft.

Although it didn't become an official NFL statistic until after he retired, Humphrey is credited with 130 career sacks and led his team in sacks in nine of the 13 seasons he spent in the league.

Research showed that Humphrey had nine double-digit sack seasons, with his first coming in 1968 and his last in 1980. Only four players in NFL history have more 10-sack seasons than Humphrey: Bruce Smith, Reggie White, Kevin Green, and Julius Peppers.

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Claude Humphrey gets enshrined in Pro Football Hall of Fame

Claude Humphrey during his Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement

He spent 10 seasons with the Falcons, earning NFL Defensive Rookie of the year honors in 1968, eight All-NFL or All-Pro honors, was named All-NFC seven times and was selected to play in six Pro Bowls.

Born in Memphis, Tenn., and attending Tennessee State, Humphrey joined the Eagles in 1977 and started 16 games that year, compiling 11 sacks.

During his three seasons in Philadelphia, he had 30.5 sacks in 44 games.

He retired at the age of 37 and, in 2014, was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He has also been inducted into the Falcons Ring of Honor in 2008 and the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in 1988.

“Upon being selected to the Hall of Fame in 2014, Humphrey said, “I was aggressive, very aggressive. I tried to play the game to the point where when I walked off the field, there was nothing that I didn’t cover. I tried to play all out. I didn’t take any prisoners. I just tried to do my job.”

Ed Kracz is the publisher of’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at or and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.