Green Bay fullback Jim Taylor, the first of the Vince Lombardi-era players enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, died Saturday morning at the age of 83.
The announcement was made by the Packers, with no cause of death.
Taylor played for Green Bay from 1958-66, running for 8,207 yards, including five consecutive seasons with more than 1,000 yards, and scoring 91 touchdowns.
The NFL’s 1962 MVP when he led the league in rushing with 1,474 yards, Taylor was the Packers’ all-time rushing leader until 2009 when Ahman Green broke his franchise record.
“Jim Taylor lived life the same way he played football,” said Hall-of-Fame president and CEO David Baker in a prepared statement, “with passion, determination and love for all he did. The entire Hall-of-Fame family mourns the loss of a true hero of the game and extends heartfelt condolences to his wife, Helen, during this difficult time.
“While Jim’s spirit forever resides at the Hall, we will miss his smile that would light up a room. The Pro Football Hall of Fame will keep Jim’s legacy alive so generations of fans will remember his rugged running style, ability to block and leadership in coach Vince Lombardi’s ‘run to daylight’ philosophy that made him the first from the Lombardi-era Packers to earn a place in Canton.
“Jim Taylor’s accomplishments on the football field and throughout his life represent values like commitment, teamwork, sacrifice and passion that serve as inspirations to us all.”
Taylor was part of the Packers’ NFL championship teams in 1961, 1962 and 1965, as well as the Super Bowl I club.