Charley Taylor, Running Backward Turned Hall of Fame Receptionist, Dies at 80

Hall of Fame recipient Charley Taylor who after 13 seasons playing for Washington retired with the most catches in professional football history, died Saturday at an assisted living facility. in Virginia. He was 80 years old.

Washington Commanders announced death in a statement but did not specify the cause.

Taylor was an American-American who ran back from Arizona State when he was enlisted in the Army by the Redskins in 1964, as the Washington football team thereafter. He’s quick but undisciplined, often edging past his strikers behind the scenes; However, he was named Rookie of the Year.

Taylor had 53 receptions that year, then a record for a comeback race. In 1966, Otto Graham, who had taken over as Washington’s coach at a time when the team had long failed, converted Taylor into a full-time receiver, hoping to create elements of strength and his dexterity on the pitch.

Taylor, who as a teenager dreamed of competing with powerhouse to re-run Jim Brown, was initially resistant to his change of game at this request. But then he discovered that starting with balls that went beyond script boundaries suited his dribbling and shifting abilities. After dodging or dominating corners, Taylor often makes a profit after a catch.

Re-evaluating his career when he retired in 1978, The Washington Post called Taylor “the man has more headaches with corners than any pass catcher to play the game.”

In Taylor’s first season as a scorer, he led the league in receptions with 72 and was the main pick for future defender Sonny Jurgensen, who led the league in passing yards. ball with 3,209. Over 10 years as teammates, the two have become some of the top offensive duos in NFL history.

Taylor helped lead Washington to consistent winning records in the early and mid-1970s, but the team never won the title. In the 1972 knockouts, Washington eliminated the defending champion Dallas Cowboys in the NFC championship game, 26-3, with Taylor recording two touchdown receptions, including one for 45 yards. However, in the Super Bowl, Washington lost to the Miami Dolphins undefeated.

Taylor held the career record for receptions until Charlie Joiner of the San Diego Chargers overtook him in 1984, the year Taylor was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Taylor remains Washington’s career leader in touchdown receptions, with 79, and he’s tied with the franchise’s single-season record for touchdown receptions, with 12. He won the championship. Pro Bowl eight times and on the Walk of Fame. All 1960s team.

Charles Robert Taylor was born on September 28, 1941 in Grand Prairie, Texas. He was raised there by his mother, Myrtle, a chef, butcher and restaurateur, and his stepfather, James Stevenson, who built aircraft parts.

Charley was a star athlete at his segregated high school, but he struggled to find a college where he could play football – college teams in Texas remain segregated – and he considered enlisting. Instead, his football career was kicked off when a man who owned a local grocery store and attended Arizona State arranged a meeting between Charley and the school’s soccer coach. , Frank Kush.

When Taylor joined the NFL, there were no black quarterbacks or coaches. After retiring, he set his sights on making history by becoming the first black head coach or general manager. He spent 16 years with the Redskins as a scout and coach, but he never progressed beyond an assistant position.

Taylor is survived by his wife, Patricia (Grant) Taylor; their three children, Elizabeth, Erica and Charles Jr.; and some grandchildren.

Taylor doesn’t celebrate touchdowns with a regular breakout. He raised his arms overhead, ball in hand, while looking around the field proudly.

“It’s a gesture that says, ‘I did all I could with the ball,'” Taylor explained in a statement. interview with NFL Films. “That’s my way of saying, ‘I’ll just let my case go.'” Charley Taylor, Running Backward Turned Hall of Fame Receptionist, Dies at 80

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