Don Hutson redefined the game in many ways, and was the first true modern receiver.
Fluid in motion, wondrously elusive with the fake, inventive in his patterns, and magnificently at ease when catching the ball, Don Hutson set the standard for pass receivers.
Hutson and fellow Hall of Famer Millard "Dixie" Howell became football's most celebrated passing combination as they thrilled Alabama fans in the 1930's, the infant years of the aerial weapon. Tall, willowy and blessed with deceptive speed and varied gifts, Hutson was the first to perfect the techniques of catching the ball "in traffic."
He made the end-around a devastating threat and shifting speeds a must. When Hutson grabbed six passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns in the Crimson Tide's 29- 13 victory over Stanford in the Rose Bowl, West Coast writers hailed him as "the greatest pass-catching speed merchant end".
Hutson made All-America at Alabama in 1934. He scored the winning touchdown on a 9-yard, end-around play as Alabama beat Tennessee 13-6. He caught six passes, two for touchdowns, against Clemson.
Hutson, 6-1 in height, 183 pounds, was at one end for Alabama. The other end was Bear Bryant, a future coaching great.
Hutson also played centerfield for the baseball team and ran for the track team. He was timed in 9.8 seconds for the 100-yard dash, blazing fast for his day and age
After his Alabama days, Hutson played 11 years with the Green Bay Packers, 1935-45. He was all-pro nine times, led the league in pass receptions eight times, led the league in scoring five times, and twice was named Most Valuable Player. He finished his pro career with 488 pass receptions. The next best player at that time had 188.
Hutson was named to the all-time college football team in 1969 and the all-time pro team in 1996. He is a member of both the College and Pro Foootball Hall of Fames.