Green Bay Packers in the Hall of Fame: Paul Hornung

(Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
(Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) /

“The Golden Boy” (Paul Vernon Hornung) was born 1935 in Louisville, Kentucky (seven years before Cassius Clay/Muhammad Ali was born in that same city).

Hornung lettered in all three major sports (football, basketball, and baseball) all four of his high school years.

In college, he dropped baseball, continuing with basketball and football.

As to the latter sport, during his collegiate career, Hornung won the Heisman Trophy, and was eventually inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.

In the pros, he was the first player chosen in the 1957 draft, won an MVP, and ended up in the NFL Hall of Fame, too (in 1986).

Hornung was primarily a running back for the Green Bay Packers from 1957 to 1966, but was also a placekicker and played quarterback a bit.

After playing for Packers News for 10 years, Hornung was selected in 1967 by the New Orleans Saints, being picked by that nascent team in the expansion draft. Still bothered by the injury that kept him out of the Super Bowl the year before, though, Hornung never played a game for them, retiring in training camp.

While with the Packers, Hornung contributed to four NFL championships, including the first Super Bowl (although an injury kept him out of the game, he had certainly been instrumental in the Packers making it to that contest in the first place).

In his pro career, Hornung scored 50 rushing touchdowns, 12 receiving touchdowns, and also kicked 66 field goals and 190 extra points for 760 all-purpose points (62 x 6 + 66 x 3 + 190 x 1).

Coach Lombardi said of Hornung that “inside the 20-yard line…he smells that goal line.”

Next: Top 30 moments in Green Bay Packers history

Hornung was the NFL’s leading scorer for three consecutive years (1959, 1960, and 1961). He set a new single-season record in 1960 with 176 points, a record that stood for almost half a century (even though more games were gradually added) until 2006, when LaDainian Tomlinson amassed 180 points on 30 touchdowns.

Paul Hornung currently resides in the town of his birth, Louisville, Kentucky.