Bob Mann (American football)

Bob Mann (American Football)

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Bob Mann (American football)

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Robert "Bob" Mann (April 8, 1924 – October 21, 2006) was an American football end. A native of New Bern, North Carolina, Mann played college football at Hampton Institute in 1942 and 1943 and at the University of Michigan in 1944, 1946 and 1947. He broke the Big Ten Conference record for receiving yardage in 1946 and again in 1947. Mann later played professional football in the NFL for the Detroit Lions (1948–1949) and Green Bay Packers (1950–1954). He was the first African-American player for both teams.

Mann led the NFL in receiving yardage (1,014 yards) and yards per reception (15.4) in 1949. Mann was asked to take a pay cut after the 1949 season and became a "hold out" when the Lions opened practice in July 1950. He was traded to the New York Yankees in August 1950 and released three weeks later. Mann charged that he had been "railroaded" out of professional football for refusing to take a pay cut. He signed with the Green Bay Packers near the end of the 1950 NFL season and was the Packers' leading receiver in 1951. He remained with the Packers through the 1954 season. He was inducted into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame in 1988.

Mann later became a lawyer and practiced law in Detroit.

Early years

Mann was born in New Bern, the county seat of Craven County, North Carolina, in 1924. His father, Dr. William Mann, was a physician, and his mother, Clara Mann, was a supervisor of elementary schools in...
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