Name: Bill Hewitt
Pro Career: 1932 – 1939, 1943
Team Affiliation(s): Chicago Bears, Philadelphia Eagles, Phil-Pitt
Induction Class: 1971, posthumously
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Brief Bio: Of all of the original “iron men” of the gridiron, Bill Hewitt was perhaps the trickiest. He was consistently one of the fastest defensive ends off the line, giving him the nickname “The Offside Kid,” constantly foiled the opposition’s offensive schemes, and regularly devised trick plays of his own. Perhaps the most famous involved a jump pass from fullback and fellow HOFer Bronko Nagurski that Hewitt in turn lateraled to another end, Bill Karr, who would then race to the end zone. It was this play that lifted the Bears over the Giants in the first ever NFL Championship game in 1933. Hewitt was a force from day 1 in the league, winning All-NFL honors as a rookie. He went on to win the same honor four more times. Despite his standout play on both sides of the ball, Hewitt is perhaps best known for his stubborn refusal to wear a helmet. He only conceded for his final year in the league when a new NFL rulebook mandated he don the protective gear.
Career Stats: 101 games played; 103 receptions; 1,638 receiving yards; 23 receiving TDs; 3 passing TDs; 1 rushing TD; 1 fumble recovery for TD.
Featured Card: 1985 Football Immortals #53. Despite his stellar playing career, Bill Hewitt does not have an official rookie card, mostly due to his career ending in the pre-WWII era, long before football card sets were an annual expectation. There have been several HOF-focused, junk wax era sets produced, with this Football Immortals being one of the first. These cards are typically in the $1 bin or can be found in lots for very minimal prices. Hewitt does not appear to have been included in any of the modern cut signature or other various high-end legends sets, so your options are pretty limited for completing a HOF inductee collection.
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