Hall of Fame mourns the passing of Bobby Mitchell

Photo courtesy of Pro Football Journal

Clark Judge

Former Washington Redskins' star receiver Bobby Mitchell passed away Sunday afternoon at the age of 84, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced.

Mitchell was a member of the Hall, inducted in 1983 in his first year as a finalist.

"The entire Pro Football Hall of Fame family mourns the passing of Bobby Mitchell," said the Hall's CEO and president, David Baker. "The game lost a true legend. Bobby was an incredible player, a talented executive and a real gentleman to everyone with whom he worked or competed against.

"His wife Gwen and their entire family remain in our thoughts and prayers. The Hall of Fame will forever keep his legacy alive to serve as an inspiration to future generations."

As is the custom with the passing of Hall of Famers, the Hall will fly its flag at half-staff in Mitchell's memory.

Mitchell,who split his 11-year career with Cleveland and Washington, was the key figure in a trade that sent the first pick pick of the 1962 NFL draft, running back Ernie Davis, from the Redskins to Cleveland after Davis said he wouldn't play for Washington.

Davis was later diagnosed with leukemia and never played a down for the Browns. He died in 1963.

Mitchell, on the other hand, went on to an illustrious career with the Redskins, leading the league in catches in 1962, leading it twice in yards receiving (1962-63) and in receiving touchdowns (1964). He was named All-Pro five times and chosen to four Pro Bowls.

After retiring, he worked for the Redskins as a pro scout and assistant general manager.

"I was extremely saddened to hear the news about the passing of the great Bobby Mitchell," said Redskins' owner Daniel Snyder. "Bobby was a Hall-of-Fame player and executive and represented the Washington Redskins organization with integrity for over 50 years.

"His passion for the game of football was unmatched by anyone I have ever met. Not only was he one of the most influential individuals in franchise history, but he was also one of the greatest men I have ever known. He was a true class act and will be sorely missed."

Comments (1)
No. 1-1
brian wolf
brian wolf

RIP ... Bobby Mitchell

A great talent who played WR or RB, Mitchell was thrust into history being the first black player to play for George Preston Marshall with the Redskins ...

He also was the whipping dog and buffer between moody superstar Jim Brown and HC Paul Brown, which was ridiculous and stunted his development ... At least he found a true home in Washington, being a part of one of the most explosive passing offences ever, though his hands werent the best ...

A great passer, but Jurgenson didnt win enough ... was the Skins defence that bad, or did he accumulate great numbers trying to comeback from behind ?

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