A Pro Football Hall of Famer known for plenty of production during a legendary career, never winning the big one and being the subject of an iconic piece of American sports photography has died.
He’s NFL and LSU legend Y.A. Tittle. He was 90 years old.
When he retired at age 38 in 1962 after a 17-year career with the Colts, 49ers and Giants, he was the NFL’s career leader in passing touchdowns and yards. The two-time MVP racked up more than 33,000 yards and 242 touchdowns — marks that still rank 35th and 25th in league history despite massive changes in the game since then. His 36 touchdown passes in 1963 were a league record until it was topped by Dan Marino in 1984.
One of his most-memorable moments came in 1964, his final season, after he threw an interception to Pittsburgh’s Chuck Hinton, who returned it for a touchdown. Tittle was captured in a photo by Dozier Mobley bleeding and helmet-less after the play.
Tittle’s “agony of defeat” photo is one that he signed plenty of times through the years as well as on cards — of his nearly 1,000 different football cards, nearly 500 of those are certified autographs. Meanwhile, he has just one Rookie Card, an appearance in the 1950 Bowman set.
In recent years, the man born Yelberton Abraham Tittle battled memory and health issues and that, along with his career, was documented by ESPN The Magazine.
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