Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1940s

Welcome to part three of our six part series examining the NFL All-Decade teams. Today, we look at the 1940s NFL All-Decade Team.

Position Player Name: Team(s): College Attended: In Hall of Fame?
Quarterback Sammy Baugh Washington Redskins Texas Christian Yes
Sid Luckman Chicago Bears Columbia Yes
Bob Waterfield Cleveland Rams
Los Angeles Rams
Running back Tony Canadeo Green Bay Packers Gonzaga Yes
Bill Dudley Pittsburgh Steelers
Detroit Lions
Virginia Yes
George McAfee Chicago Bears Duke Yes
Steve Van Buren Philadelphia Eagles Louisiana State Yes
Charley Trippi Chicago Cardinals Georgia Yes
Byron White Detroit Lions Colorado No
Fullback Marion Motley Cleveland Browns
Pittsburgh Steelers
Nevada Yes
Pat Harder Chicago Cardinals
Detroit Lions
Wisconsin No
Bill Osmanski Chicago Bears Holy Cross No
End Mac Speedie Cleveland Browns Utah No
Pete Pihos Philadelphia Eagles Indiana Yes
Ed Sprinkle Chicago Bears Hardin-Simmons University
Dante Lavelli Cleveland Browns Ohio State Yes
Ken Kavanaugh Chicago Bears Louisiana State No
Jim Benton Cleveland Rams
Chicago Bears
Los Angeles Rams
University of Arkansas No
Jack Ferrante Philadelphia Eagles none No
Tackle Al Blozis New York Giants Georgetown No
George Connor Chicago Bears Notre Dame Yes
Frank “Bucko” Kilroy Philadelphia Eagles Temple No
Buford “Baby” Ray Green Bay Packers Vanderbilt No
Vic Sears Philadelphia Eagles Oregon State No
Al Wistert Philadelphia Eagles Michigan No
Guard Bruno Banducci Philadelphia Eagles
San Francisco 49ers
Stanford No
Bill Edwards New York Giants Baylor No
Garrard “Buster” Ramsey Chicago Cardinals William and Mary No
Bill Willis Cleveland Browns Ohio State Yes
Len Younce New York Giants Oregon State No
Center Charley Brock Green Bay Packers Nebraska No
Clyde “Bulldog” Turner Chicago Bears Hardin-Simmons Yes
Alex Wojciechowicz Detroit Lions
Philadelphia Eagles
Fordham Yes

The 1940s NFL All-Decade team was highly affected by World War II. Some teams stopped playing while others merged so that they could still field a team of experienced players. Many teams contributed players to the All-Decade team, but two produced twice as many as the best of the rest of the NFL. The 1950s Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles each contributed eight players to the All-Decade team. The Detroit Lions and Cleveland Browns were next in line, each contributing four players.

From a standpoint of colleges represented, the 1940s NFL All-Decade Team is starting to look a little more modern in terms of having players from what are considered classic football schools included. There are still a few smaller colleges that contributed players, colleges that today are not considered to be classic football schools. One of the more interesting facts is that the 1940s NFL All-Decade Team includes two players that attended Hardin-Simmons University, a small Baptist college in Abilene, Texas.

As we stated before, what prompted this look at the NFL’s All-Decade Team was the question as to how many players have made the All-Decade Team, meaning they’ve been a great player for roughly a decade if not more, but failed to make it into the Hall-of-Fame.

1940s All Decade Team Players Who Didn’t Make It Into The Hall Of Fame:
Byron White – Running Back – Detroit Lions
Pat Harder – Fullback – Chicago Cardinals, Detroit Lions
Bill Osmanski – Fullback – Chicago Bears
Mac Speedie – End – Cleveland Browns
Ed Sprinkle – End – Chicago Bears
Ken Kavanaugh – End – Chicago Bears
Jim Benton – End – Cleveland/Los Angeles Rams, Chicago Bears
Jack Ferrante – End – Philadelphia Eagles
Al Blozis – Tackle – New York Giants
Frank Kilroy – Tackle – Philadelphia Eagles
Buford Ray – Tackle – Green Bay Packers
Vic Sears – Tackle – Philadelphia Eagles
Al Wistert – Tackle Philadelphia Eagles
Bruno Banducci – Guard – Philadelphia Eagles/San Francisco 49ers
Bill Edwards – Guard – New York Giants
Garrard Ramsey – Guard – Chicago Cardinals
Len Younce – Guard – New York Giants
Charley Brock – Center – Green Bay Packers

Players selected: 33
Players not in Hall of Fame: 18
54% of 1940s All Decade Team Players are not in the Hall of Fame

The next chapter will cover the 1950s NFL All-Decade Team.

Other chapters in this study: Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1920s Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1930s Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1940s Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1950s Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1960s Examines The NFL All-Decade Teams: The 1970s

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