Stephen W. Van Buren
(born December 28, 1920) is a former professional American football halfback
who played for the Philadelphia Eagles
of the National Football League
, and is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame
Van Buren was born in La Ceiba
but, after he was orphaned as a boy, he was sent to live with relatives in New Orleans
. From Easton High School in New Orleans, he received an athletic scholarship to Louisiana State University
, where he led the nation in points (110) and touchdowns (16) as a senior.
A first-round draft pick in the 1944 NFL Draft
, Van Buren ran for 444 yards in nine games during his first season with the Philadelphia Eagles. He also led the league in returning punts as a rookie. The following season, Van Buren led the NFL in rushing for the first time. He would win three additional rushing crowns in 1947, 1948 and 1949, becoming the first running back in NFL history to achieve three consecutive rushing titles. Jim Brown (1957–1961, 1963–1965) twice, Earl Campbell (1978–1980), and Emmitt Smith (1991–1993) have since managed that feat. All four are in the Pro Football Hall Of Fame.
1948 NFL Championship game
Van Buren's signature game came on December 26, 1948. Playing in a blizzard for the NFL Championship against the Chicago Cardinals
, Van Buren scored the only touchdown of the game to give the Eagles their first league... Read More