Al Wistert - Professional Football

Professional Football

After being drafted in the fifth round by the Philadelphia Eagles and signing for $3800 ($51,037 today), he encountered animosity from veteran players for having signed such a large contract (though they thought he signed for $4500). He earned All-Pro honors in eight (five by consensus) of his nine seasons. As a two-way player, he played his entire nine-year career for the Philadelphia Eagles (who operated as a merged team with the Pittsburgh Steelers for one season during World War II.) The National Football League had no All-Star games between 1943 and 1950. Thus, although Wistert was a perennial All-Pro selection, it is difficult to compare him to more modern players who are often measured by Pro Bowl invitations. He served as Eagles captain for five consecutive seasons, from 1946 to 1950, and was named All-Pro in each season. In Wistert's next to last season he was selected to the first Pro Bowl. In his final season, he recovered three fumbles. The Eagles won the 1948 and 1949 National Football League Championships with Wistert. These were the only consecutive National Football League champions to win by shutout. His number 70 was retired by the Eagles in 1952. According to his College football hall of fame biography, during his career he started every game the Eagles played except for the 1950 season opener against the Cleveland Browns. However, according to other statistical databases he only started about 2/3 of his career games. His is one of only seven retired Eagles Jerseys. Wistert lamented not having been enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and on Philadelphia Eagles Honor Roll:

The two things that would really make my career complete is to be inducted into both the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the Philadelphia Eagles Honor Roll.

Wistert was inducted into the Philadelphia Eagles Honor Roll on September 29, 2009 along with Randall Cunningham.

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