Gale Sayers, one of the most electric NFL players of the 1960s, has died. He was 77 years old.

The Pro Football Hall of Famer was a brilliant running back and returner who spent only seven years in the league, all with the Chicago Bears, from 1965 to 1971.

Nicknamed the “Kansas Comet” after a brilliant college career with the Jayhawks, Sayers had one of the NFL’s all-time best rookie seasons after entering the league as the fourth overall selection in the 1965 NFL draft.

Sayers set a league record that first season by scoring 22 touchdowns — including a record-tying six in a single game — and gained 2,272 all-purpose yards, also throwing for a TD pass and running back one punt and one kickoff for scores in 14 games in 1965. He was named the NFL’s Rookie of the Year and would earn four Pro Bowl appearances and five first-team All-Pro selections in his first five seasons.

Asked how he always seemed able to escape from traffic on the field and break open big runs, Sayers once said: “Just give me 18 inches of daylight. That’s all I need.”

The greatness during Sayers’ relatively short run was undeniable, however. Sayers was the only player to make the NFL’s 75th anniversary team at two different positions, running back and kick returner. Only three other Pro Football Hall of Famers played fewer than Sayers’ 68 games. 

In 1968, Sayers suffered a serious knee injury. Without the medical technology of today, he was never the same, though he reinvented himself and led the NFL in rushing in 1969 as he ran with power and toughness. After another serious knee injury in the preseason of 1970, he played in only four more games and rushed for just 90 more yards.

To this day Sayers is still the youngest ever Pro Football Hall Of Fame inductee at age 34, in 1977.

The Sayers family helped settle, and was a 

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