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Bill Byrne (American football)

Bill Byrne
No. 66
Personal information
Born:(1940-11-19)November 19, 1940
New York, New York, U.S.
Died:June 23, 2021(2021-06-23) (aged 80)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Height:6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight:240 lb (109 kg)
Career information
High school:Montclair
(Montclair, New Jersey)
College:Boston College
NFL draft:1962 / Round: 4 / Pick: 55
Career history
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at · PFR

William Joseph Byrne (November 19, 1940 – June 23, 2021) was an American football guard. He played professional football for the Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League (NFL).

Early life

Byrne was born in New York City in 1940. Raised in Montclair, New Jersey,[1] he played prep football at Montclair High School, leading a team that lost only one game in his final two seasons.[2] He played college football at Boston College from 1959 to 1961.[3][4]


He was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth round (55th overall pick) of the 1962 NFL Draft.[5] Despite having a matching offer from the Dallas Texans of the American Football League, he signed with the Eagles in December 1961.[6] He was the lone rookie slated to play in an early exhibition game in 1962,[7] but he sustained a slipped disc in a warmup prior to the game.[8] He missed the entire 1962 season due to the injury, and he was injured again during a pre-season game in 1963, this time injuring both his back and his knee. He was released by the Eagles at the start of the 1963 season but then recalled to the team.[9] He appeared in 12 games with the Eagles during the 1963 season.[5] He returned to the Eagles in 1964, but was cut at the end of August.[10]


Byrne died in June 2021 at age 80 in Atlanta.[5]


  1. ^ "Obituary: William J. Byrne", Dignity Memorial. Accessed December 20, 2021. "Bill was born to Helen and Michael Byrne in New York City and grew up in Montclair, NJ."
  2. ^ Tober, Steve. "A leader and great teammate: Byrne was part of Montclair's rich history", The Montclair Times, July 15, 2021. Accessed December 20, 2021, via "It was the heyday of Montclair High School football.... Lineman Bill Byrne was a big part of both the undefeated 1956 squad (9-0) – which is considered by some to be one of the two or three best teams in school history – and the once-beaten '57 edition, which battled back from late-season adversity to finish strong."
  3. ^ "Bill Byrne". Pro Football Archives. Retrieved December 19, 2021.
  4. ^ "Byrne Makes Van Cott Go". The Boston Globe. October 24, 1961. p. 53 – via
  5. ^ a b c "Bill Byrne". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved December 19, 2021.
  6. ^ "Byrne Becomes 3d B. C. Star to Sign Pro Pact". The Boston Globe. December 15, 1961. p. 43 – via
  7. ^ Herb Good (August 11, 1962). "Byrne Is Lone Rookie In Eagles' Lineup With Colts". The Philadelphia Inquirer. p. 14 – via
  8. ^ Herb Good (August 28, 1962). "'Surprises' Set In Eagles' Cuts". The Philadelphia Inquirer. p. 28 – via
  9. ^ "Byrne Need Operation; Other Eagles In NFL". The Heights. October 4, 1963.
  10. ^ "Eagles Cut 7, Get Carpenter". The Philadelphia Eagles. August 26, 1964. p. 54.
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Bill Byrne (American football)
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