Who Was The First Ever Pro Football Player?
William ‘Pudge’ Walter Heffelfinger was an American football player and coach. He is considered the first person to play football professionally.
He was the first person to get payed to play the game, making him the first ‘pro’ football player in the world. This historic happening took place on November 12, 1892.
I wonder if he had any idea of how this would catch on and turn into million dollar contracts for players of the future. I would say no, based on what he got payed.
Heffelfinger was paid $25 by the Allegheny Athletic Association to play in a game against the rival Pittsburgh Athletic Club. Yes, $25 was the first big money deal in football.
And the deal was actually even bigger as he was offered a $500 bonus. That was big money in 1892 considering no one else had ever got paid to play.
How much was $500 in 1892? In 2013 dollars, it would be 13 thousand bucks.
Heffelfinger was born in Minneapolis, MN.