Charlie Krueger

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Charlie Krueger
No. 70
Position:Defensive tackle
Personal information
Born:(1937-01-28)January 28, 1937
Caldwell, Texas
Died:February 5, 2021(2021-02-05) (aged 84)
Clayton, California
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:256 lb (116 kg)
Career information
High school:Caldwell (TX)
College:Texas A&M
NFL Draft:1958 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Safeties:3
Interceptions:1
Touchdowns:1
Player stats at NFL.com · PFR

Charles Andrew Krueger (January 28, 1937 – February 5, 2021) was an American professional football player who was a defensive tackle for 15 seasons in the National Football League (NFL), all with the San Francisco 49ers. He played college football at Texas A&M, where he was a two-time All-American. He is a member of several halls of fame, including the Texas A&M Athletics Hall of Fame, College Football Hall of Fame, San Francisco 49ers Hall of Fame, National Football Foundation Hall of Fame, and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.

Early life[edit]

Born and raised in Caldwell, Texas, Krueger was the second oldest of eight children. His family was poor; all the boys helped out in their father's mattress factory business. When he was 12, Kruger started playing football at halfback, but he soon grew in size to be more fit as a lineman. As a sophomore at Caldwell High School, he weighed 190 pounds and was 6 feet 2 inches tall.[1] He received college football offers from Texas A&M, Rice, and Texas, and after being convinced by new Aggies head coach Bear Bryant, decided to play for Texas A&M.[2]

His younger brother, Rolf Krueger, also played college football at Texas A&M and in the NFL.[2]

College career[edit]

Krueger played college football at Texas A&M. Under head coach Bear Bryant,[3] his teammates included 1957 Heisman Trophy winner John David Crow, future NFL All-Pro linebacker and coach Jack Pardee, and future Aggie coach Gene Stallings. Krueger received All-Southwest Conference (SWC) and All-American honors for the 1956 and 1957 seasons. He was part of the 1956 Aggies team that won the SWC championship. After his senior season, he played as captain of the 1958 College All-Star team, which defeated the Detroit Lions 35–19.

Krueger was inducted into the Texas A&M Athletics Hall of Fame in 1972 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 1983.[4] He was also included in the SWC 50-year team which covered the 1919–68 seasons.[1]

NFL career[edit]

Krueger was selected ninth overall in the 1958 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. He played defensive tackle for the team until his retirement in 1973.[5] He was selected to the Associated Press All-Pro second team in 1960 and 1965,[1] and the UPI All-Pro honorable mention team in 1966.[6][7]

Krueger wore number 70 and his number was retired by the 49ers.[7] Nicknamed the "Textbook Tackle,"[4] his defensive teammates included Pro Football Hall of Fame members Dave Wilcox at linebacker and Jimmy Johnson at cornerback. He was one of the last linemen in the NFL to wear a two-bar "quarterback" facemask. His brother Rolf (b.1946) was also an NFL player with the St. Louis Cardinals and the 49ers, where the two played together in 1972 and 1973.[8]

Krueger's 15-year tenure with the 49ers is tied with Len Rohde for fourth in team history, behind John Brodie, Jerry Rice, and Jimmy Johnson.[7]

Krueger was inducted into the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in 1983, and the 49ers Hall of Fame in 2009.[1]

After retirement[edit]

At age 51 in 1988, Krueger was awarded more than $2.3 million in damages stemming from a lawsuit against the San Francisco 49ers. The judge found that Krueger received repeated anesthetic injections during his NFL career so that he could continue to play in spite of significant knee injuries. The decision found that the 49ers were not truthful with Krueger regarding the seriousness of his injuries, which left him with severe chronic pain after his playing days.[5][9]

From 1960 to his death, Krueger lived in Clayton, California where he was involved with charitable organizations. He suffered health problems in his later years that prevented him from enjoying the outdoors.[2] In 2014, he was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.[1]

He died at the age of 84 on February 5, 2021, following heart and kidney failure, eight days after his birthday.[10] He was survived by his wife of 48 years, Kristin Adler Krueger.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Marquardt, Brad (February 8, 2021). "Hall of Famer Charlie Krueger Passes Away". Texas A&M Athletic Department. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c Werner, John (February 21, 2014). "Hall of Fame profile: Ex-Aggie DL Charlie Krueger 'would knock your brains out'". Waco Tribune-Herald. Retrieved March 26, 2021.
  3. ^ Charlie Krueger at the College Football Hall of Fame
  4. ^ a b Newser Editors and Wire Services (February 7, 2021). "'Textbook Tackle' Dies at 84". Retrieved March 26, 2021. {{cite web}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  5. ^ a b Padwe, Sandy (June 27, 1988). "When Trust is Betrayed: Charlie Krueger Gave the 49ers More Than They Deserved". Sports Illustrated. p. 80. Retrieved March 26, 2021.
  6. ^ "Charlie Krueger". pro-football-reference.com. Retrieved March 26, 2021.
  7. ^ a b c "San Francisco 49ers 2020 Media Guide" (PDF). Retrieved March 26, 2021.
  8. ^ "Rolf Krueger". pro-football-reference.com. Retrieved March 26, 2021.
  9. ^ Pierson, Don (June 3, 1988). "Crippled Former 49er Wins $2.36 Million for 'Concealed' Injury". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  10. ^ a b Branch, Eric (February 5, 2021). "49ers' Hall of Famer Charlie Krueger, rugged defensive tackle, dies at 84". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved February 5, 2021.

External links[edit]