The Franchise”The Franchise”
A great running back, Floyd Little, who played for Syracuse and the Denver Broncos, has died. He was 78 years old.Megan Rapinoe celebrates the hurdle of Najee Harris over Notre Dame defenderRead more The Pro Football Hall of Fame said that Little died at his home in Nevada on Friday night. No reason has been given.
In May, when he created a GoFundMe page to assist the family with medical expenses, a former teammate at Syracuse, Pat Killorin, made Little’s cancer diagnosis public. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said, “Floyd Little wasn’t just a Hall of Fame running back, he was a Hall of Fame person,” The pillars of his life were religion, family and football. “Faith, family and football were the pillars of his life. ” He ran for 2,704 yards and 46 touchdowns from 1964 to 1966. In 1967, the sixth player picked in the AFL-NFL was Little, who was born in New Haven, Connecticut. In Denver, he played nine seasons, where he received the nickname “The Franchise” since his signing saved the team from moving and helped persuade voters to support funding for Mile High Stadium, which has since been replaced at Mile High by Empower Field. I remember when I got there,” Little said in 2009, “there was talk of the team moving to Chicago or Birmingham, so I was supposed to have saved the franchise, and I believe [former team spokesman]Jim Saccomano gave me the nickname.
In 1983, Little was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame and in 2010 to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. David Baker, president and CEO of the Pro Hall, said, “Floyd Little was a true hero of the game. “He was a man of great honesty, zeal and bravery. His accomplishments were far greater off the field than the remarkable feats he completed on the field. The smile, heart and character of Floyd epitomized what living a Hall of Fame life entails. Little led the NFL with 1,133 yards rushing in 1971 and 12 touchdown runs in 1973, a five-time Pro Bowler. He was also one of the best kick returners in the league and led the AFL in punt returns as a rookie in 1967. In his nine-year pro career, he ran for 6,323 yards and 43 touchdowns and caught 215 passes for 2,418 yards and nine touchdowns. He had the most all-purpose yards in pro football and waaa
All those people had vanished, so who was going to worry about Floyd Little? Oh, nobody.
I was thinking that I had just slipped through the cracks and would never be seen or heard from again. “In Denver, where team owner Pat Bowlen once lauded his “immeasurable contributions to this franchise and the NFL,” he was never forgotten. Over the years, Little has been a vibrant presence at Broncos meetings and activities.
He said he was approached frequently by fans who wanted to make a bet with him during his lengthy wait for induction into the Hall of Fame: what year he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame. “And I have to tell them I’m not in the Hall of Fame and I’ve not even been nominated yet,” Little said in the months leading up to his selection on Feb. 6, 2010. He agreed to avoid getting his hopes and a nomination.
I was wearing number 44.
I just sense that my period has arrived. “Hall vice president Joe Horrigan called him with the good news the day before New Orleans’ 31-17 win over Indianapolis in the Super Bowl. “I was shocked,” Little said. “I knew he wasn’t calling to tell me that I had passed over again. He returned to Syracuse the next year as a special assistant to the athletic director, a position he held until 2016, when he received an honorary doctorate, after selling a car dealership in Seattle shortly before his nomination after 32 years.