Buster Ramsey

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Garrard S. "Buster" Ramsey
Personal information
Date of birth (1920-03-16)March 16, 1920
Place of birth Townsend, Tennessee
Date of death September 16, 2007(2007-09-16) (aged 87)
Place of death Signal Mountain, Tennessee
Career information
Position(s) Guard
College William and Mary
NFL Draft 1943 / Round 14 / Pick 124
Career highlights
Honors College Football HOF
Head coaching record
Career record 11-16-1
Stats
Playing stats DatabaseFootball
Coaching stats DatabaseFootball
Team(s) as a player
1946–1951 NFL Chicago Cardinals
Team(s) as a coach/administrator
1960–1961 AFL Buffalo Bills
College Football Hall of Fame

Garrard Sliger "Buster" Ramsey (March 16, 1920 – September 16, 2007) was an American football player who starred at William and Mary and was the first head coach of the American Football League's Buffalo Bills in 1960. Prior to coaching the Bills, and after a stint in the United States Navy during World War II, Ramsey played for the Chicago Cardinals from 1946–1951, a member of the 1947 World Champions. In 1951, Ramsey became a player-coach for the Cardinals before becoming the Defensive Coach for the Detroit Lions in 1952. During his tenure with the Lions, Ramsey is credited with devising the 4-3 defense, a staple of modern football, and being the first coach to blitz linebackers, a package he called Red Dog. The Lions won three World Championships in the 1950s with Ramsey running the defense. He developed Lions greats such as Yale Lary, Jack Christiansen, Jim David, and many others. In 1960, he was lured to the new AFL as coach of the Buffalo Bills. Though fired by Bills' owner Ralph C. Wilson Jr. after the 1961 AFL season, Ramsey is credited for laying the foundation of one of the best defensive teams in the history of the AFL. He also had a brother, Knox Ramsey, who also starred for the College of William and Mary, the Chicago Cardinals, and the Washington Redskins. Ramsey was elected into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in 1974, and the College Football Hall of Fame in 1978.

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