US Med Voice

US Med



Vol. 3, No. 8 | August 2011




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Why the NFL Drafts
The Man Who Built the National Football League


US MED Gives Back

It was 1935 when wide receiver Don Hutson was the subject of a bidding war in the NFL draft. Hutson caused angst and confusion in the league when he sent signed contracts to the league for both the Green Bay Packers and the Brooklyn Dodgers.


When both contracts arrived on the same day, then NFL President Joe Carr awarded the Alabama star to Green Bay because the timestamp on its postmark was 17 minutes earlier.


In the same year, some teams complained that the Chicago Bears and New York Giants held an edge in luring talent because they could pay more.


Carr realized something better than simply bidding for players had to be developed, according to Chris Willis author of Carr's biography, The Man Who Built the National Football League. The NFL draft system was put in place by the following year.


University of Chicago halfback Jay Berwanger, who was also the first Heisman Trophy Winner, was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles as the NFL's first draft pick. Berwanger didn't sign and chose a non-football career.


African-American players were barred from the NFL until 1946.



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