Books | Sports

December 1, 2008

How Red Grange Created Pro Football

The Galloping Ghost was as big in his day as Babe Ruth, but we've forgotten how critical he was in building the modern NFL. A new biography aims to set that right.

Tom Flynn

Red Grange’s fame and impact may not be ships passing in the night, but they are certainly traveling in opposite directions. The football player’s fame heads off towards the horizon, as with each passing year he grows more vague and distant. His impact heads directly our way, the ubiquitous "NFL" logo emblazoned on its prow and looming ever larger in our American culture.

Grange did not found the NFL—it existed for a handful of seasons before he joined the Chicago Bears in late 1925—but his breathtaking open-field sprints electrified the stadiums of its motley assembly of early teams. With many of the country’s best collegiate football teams still in the Ivy League, going professional in football was decidedly lowbrow. The New York Giants, now an old-money cornerstone of the NFL, were founded by bookmakers (as in bookies, not publishers) in 1925. They were in good company in a league whose reputation and prospects were sketchy at best. That is, until Red arrived.

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- Sports
- posted on Dec 10, 08
darrel mason

Who knows what year was football created ?

Article by Tom Flynn

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