CHARLES “CONCRETE CHARLIE” BEDNARIK
Bednarik was the first player drafted in the 1949 NFL Draft, by the Philadelphia Eagles, starring on both offense (as a center) and defense (as a linebacker). He was a member of the Eagles’ NFL Championship teams in 1949 and 1960. In the 1960 NFL Championship Game, Bednarik, the last Eagle between Green Bay’s Jim Taylor and the end zone, tackled Taylor on the final play of the game at the Eagles’ eight yard line, and remained atop Taylor as the final seconds ticked off the clock, ensuring the Packers could not run another play and preserving a 17–13 Eagles victory.
In 1960, Bednarik knocked Frank Gifford of the New York Giants out of football for over 18 months, with one of the most famous tackles in NFL history. Bednarik had a famous quarrel with Chuck Noll, who once, as a player for the Cleveland Browns, smashed him in the face during a fourth-down punting play.
Bednarik proved extremely durable, missing just three games in his 14 seasons. He was named All-Pro eight times, and was the last of the NFL’s “Sixty-Minute Men,” players who played both offense and defense on a regular basis.
Bednarik’s nickname, “Concrete Charlie,” originated from his off-season career as a concrete salesman for the Warner Company, not (contrary to popular belief) from his reputation as a ferocious tackler. Nonetheless, sportswriter Hugh Brown of The Bulletin in Philadelphia, credited with bestowing the nickname, remarked that Bednarik “is as hard as the concrete he sells.” [Wikipedia]