Sammy Baugh, NFL legend, dead at 94. If you don't know who Sammy Baugh is, you owe him a debt of gratitude if you are a fan of the modern football passing game. Baugh was Slingin' Sammy long before passing was cool, as well as being a great punter and safety in those old one-platoon days.
It was also the time of leather helmets without face masks, and quarterbacks calling their plays, which made this old story possible:
“One time there was a defensive lineman who was coming down on me with his fists closed,” he once told The San Antonio Express-News. “A couple of plays later, I found a play we could waste and I told our linemen to just let him come through.
“The guy got about five feet from me, and I hit him right in the forehead with the ball. He turned red and passed out. It scared the hell out of me.”
Ah, the good ol' days.