Russ Craft
Russ Craft - 1952 Bowman Large.jpg
Craft on a 1952 Bowman football card
Born:(1919-10-15)October 15, 1919
McEwen, Tennessee
Died:January 12, 2009(2009-01-12) (aged 89)
Wellsburg, West Virginia
Career information
Position(s)Defensive back
NFL draft1943 / Round: 15 / Pick: 132
Career history
As player
1946–1953Philadelphia Eagles
1954Pittsburgh Steelers
Career highlights and awards
Pro Bowls2
Career stats

William Russell Craft (October 15, 1919 – January 12, 2009) was an American football defensive back in the National Football League (NFL)for the Philadelphia Eagles and the Pittsburgh Steelers.[1] He played college football at the University of Alabama and was drafted in the fifteenth round of the 1943 NFL Draft.[2] In 1948, Craft was a key member of the Eagles in what became known as the Blizzard Bowl, in which the Eagles’ defense overwhelmed the Cardinals on the way to a 7–0 victory that earned Philadelphia its first N.F.L. championship.[3] In 1949, he was a notable player in helping the Eagles win a second World Championship, a 1947 Division Championship, and was selected to the Pro Bowl twice, in 1951 and 1952.[3]

Craft had some other notable achievements. In 1950, against the Chicago Cardinals, the Eagles' defense recorded eight interceptions, including an NFL-record-tying four by Craft. Craft had 22 career interceptions.[3] Then in 1952, while playing against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Craft was able to block three Extra points (PATs).

Craft was also a defensive coach for the Steelers.[4]

After football, Craft served as the sheriff of Brooke County, West Virginia from 1969 to 1972.[4]


  1. ^ "Players". NFL. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  2. ^ "1943 NFL Draft". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  3. ^ a b c "Russ Craft, Player on 2 Eagles' Title Teams, Is Dead at 89". The New York Times. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Two-time Pro Bowler Craft dies at 89". ESPN. Retrieved August 23, 2016.