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'Dante Lavelli'
Personal Information
Position(s)
Wide Receiver, Flanker, Defensive End
Jersey #(s)
56, 86
Born: Dante Bert Joseph Lavelli
on February 23, 1923 in Hudson, Ohio, in
Died: January 20, 2009(2009-01-20) (aged 85) in Cleveland, Ohio, in
Career information
Year(s) 19461955
NFL Supplemental Draft / Pick:
Professional teams
Career stats
Career highlights and awards

Dante Bert Joseph "Gluefingers" Lavelli (February 23, 1923 – January 20, 2009) was an American football end (wide receiver) who played for the Cleveland Browns in the All-America Football Conference and National Football League from 1946 to 1956.[1] He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1975.

High school careerEdit

Lavelli played football for Hudson High School in his hometown of Hudson, Ohio. He graduated in 1941. Hudson High's current stadium is named in honor of him.

College careerEdit

Lavelli attended the Ohio State University, where the Browns' first coach Paul Brown was then coaching, but played just three games before a knee injury ended his season. While at Ohio State he was a member of Delta Tau Delta International Fraternity. He joined the U.S. Army before the start of the 1943 season to fight in World War II. He landed at Omaha Beach, and was in Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge.[2]

Professional careerEdit

Nicknamed "Gluefingers", Lavelli was an original member of the Browns franchise, where he starred alongside American football legends like Otto Graham, Lou Groza and Marion Motley. Lavelli quickly became Graham's top passing target and led the AAFC in receiving as a rookie, also catching the game-winning touchdown pass in the 1946 championship game.

He was part of four Browns championships from 1946 to 1949 in the AAFC and three more NFL championships in 1950, 1954 and 1955. During the team's inaugural year in the NFL in 1950, Lavelli caught 11 passes in the NFL Championship game against the Los Angeles Rams.

Overall in his career, Lavelli caught 386 passes for 6,488 yards and 62 touchdowns in 11 seasons.

Career statisticsEdit

Career Statistics More: NFL.com
Season Team Receiving Rushing Fumbles
G GS Rec Yds Avg Long TD Att Yds Avg Lng TD FUM Lost
NFL Statistics
1956 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 11 -- 20 344 17.2 -- 1 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1955 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 12 -- 31 492 15.9 -- 4 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1954 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 12 -- 47 802 17.1 -- 7 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1953 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 12 -- 45 783 17.4 -- 6 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1952 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 8 -- 21 336 16.0 -- 4 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1951 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 12 -- 43 586 13.6 -- 6 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1950 Cleveland Browns (NFL) 12 -- 37 565 15.3 -- 5 -- -- -- -- -- -- --
AAFC Statistics
1949 Cleveland Browns (AAFC) 0 -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1948 Cleveland Browns (AAFC) 0 -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1947 Cleveland Browns (AAFC) 0 -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
1946 Cleveland Browns (AAFC) 0 -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
Combined Career Stats Total 244 3,908 16.0 0 33 0 0 0.0 0 0 0 0

Post football lifeEdit

Lavelli resided in the West Cleveland suburb of Westlake with his wife Joy. He had three grown children: Lucinda, Edward and Lisa, as well as four grandchildren: Aaron, Danielle, Noah and Luke. A successful automobile dealership owner, which he began to dabble in during his playing career, after he retired from football, Lavelli also ventured into the furniture business and ran a store known as Lavelli's Furniture in Rocky River, Ohio. He died in 2009 at the age of 85.[3]

DeathEdit

On January 20, 2009 he died at age 85 at Fairview Hospital from complications of kidney and bladder infections as well as congestive heart failure.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Dolgan, Bob. "Browns legend Dante Lavelli, 85, passes away", The Plain Dealer, 2009-01-20. Retrieved on 2009-01-21. 
  2. Pluto, Terry. "Lavelli caught everything, but his family insists they received the most", The Plain Dealer, 2009-01-24. Retrieved on 2009-01-25. 
  3. "Browns Hall of Famer Dante Lavelli dies", WKYC, 2009-01-20. Retrieved on 2009-01-20. 

External linksEdit

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