andy uram packers

Packers History: The Unique Career of Andy Uram

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Andy Uram carved out a modest six-year career with the Packers, yet his name is still spotted in multiple parts of the Green Bay Packers’ record books. So, how does one of the lesser-recognized backs of the Lambeau era still have a mark in franchise lore?

In the history of the Green Bay Packers, Andy Uram’s career isn’t exactly the most heralded. After all, his stats across his six-year run with the Packers include 1,073 rushing yards and 1,083 receiving yards – totals that rank 40th and 56th, respectively in team history. Additionally, he received lower billing in backfields that also featured Tony Canadeo, Clarke Hinkle, Joe Laws, and Ted Fritsch. In fact, his 17 career interceptions on defense probably stand out just as much as his offensive numbers.

Yet, despite this, how is it that Uram finds his name in several spots in the franchise’s record books?

The Packers used their sixth round of the 1938 NFL Draft on Uram, who was known for his speed and “snake-like hip action” during his time at Minnesota. Though he played sparingly as a rookie, Curly Lambeau and the Packers’ coaching staff put that speed to good use beginning in Year 2.

On Oct. 8, 1939, Uram broke off a 97-yard touchdown run in the Packers’ 27-20 win over the Chicago Cardinals at State Fair Park, setting a franchise and National Football League record for longest run from scrimmage. The scamper stood as the NFL record until Tony Dorsett’s 99-yard run in 1983, while it remained a team record until Ahman Green’s 98-yard run in 2003.

To date, Uram’s run is still second in Packers history and is one of seven runs in league history of 97 yards or longer. Interestingly, Uram finished the ’39 season with just 272 rushing yards, meaning his record-setting run accounted for over 35 percent of the year’s total.

“He was one of the best open-field runners in those years,” said former lineman and teammate Charley Brock.

Two years later, Uram again put his name in the Green Bay records. In a 30-7 win over the Brooklyn Dodgers on Oct. 12, 1941, he ripped off a 90-yard punt return touchdown – a record that stood for 13 seasons and is still one of the 10 longest in franchise history.

Flash ahead just over one year and Uram put together the best entire game of his career, posting 174 yards and three touchdowns on just four receptions in a 55-24 rout of the Cardinals. He found the endzone on catches of 64, 36, and 62 yards, but even his day was overshadowed by that of Don Hutson, who had five grabs for 207 yards and three scores.

Nonetheless, Uram still holds the record for most single-game receiving yards by a Packers back, with Aaron Jones’ 159 aerial yards at Kansas City in 2019 coming in as the next highest. On top of that, his 43.5 yards per reception still ranks as the fifth-most in a single game in franchise history (minimum three catches).

Following a 1943 season in which he played sparingly, Uram joined the U.S. Navy until being discharged at the conclusion of World War II. He would attempt a comeback with Green Bay in ’47, but was cut after training camp.

However, in a career that spanned just 63 games and was overshadowed by many other franchise greats, Uram still ranks among the team’s best in several single-game categories.

  • 2nd, Longest run from scrimmage (97 yards)
  • 1st, Most single-game receiving yards by a running back (174 yards)
  • 5th, Highest yards per reception – minimum three catches (43.5 yards)
  • 8th, Longest punt return (90 yards)
  • T-4th, Most single-game receiving touchdowns (3)

Uram did eventually earn a spot in the Packers Hall of Fame in 1973 – part of the third class ever inducted. However, even then the ceremony was headlined by the likes of Canadeo, Fritsch, Brock, and Larry Craig among many others.

Still, Uram’s name still lives on through the franchise’s annals.

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