LYNCHBURG, Va. - Bill Dudley, a Hall of Fame player who in 1946 with the Pittsburgh Steelers led the NFL in rushing, punt returns and interceptions, has died at 88.
Dudley died Thursday after a short illness, son Jim Dudley said.
"Bullet" Bill Dudley was a runner, passer, punter, kicker and defensive back during his nine-year NFL career, highlighted by his 1946 season in which he was the league's most valuable player. While with the Washington Redskins, he shared an apartment with NFL great Sammy Baugh. Dudley later served in the Virginia Legislature.
Dudley starred in college at Virginia and was the No. 1 overall draft choice of the Steelers in 1942. He played three seasons with Pittsburgh, a stay interrupted in 1943 and 1944 because of Army service during World War II. He later played three years with the Detroit Lions and three with the Redskins, ending with his retirement in 1953.
The year after his MVP season, Dudley scored 11 touchdowns - on seven receptions, two rushes, a punt return and an interception return.
Born in Bluefield, Va., Dudley played at 5-foot-10 and 182 pounds. He was not especially fast, but he earned his "Bullet" nickname because he always hit his target.
Dudley was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1956 and the Pro Football Hall of Fame 10 years later. - AP