With the NFL set to celebrate its 100th birthday on Sept. 17, 2020, here's a look at what transpired this week in Bears history:
In 1914, former running back Dick Plasman was born. Selected by the Bears in the third round of the 1937 draft out of Vanderbilt, he played six of his eight NFL seasons with the Bears from 1937-41 and in 1944. He was a member of the Bears' NFL championship teams in 1940 and '41 and was the last NFL player to play without a helmet, something he did in the Bears' 73-0 win over the Redskins in the 1940 title game. Plasman passed away on June 20, 1981 at the age of 67.
In 1948, former linebacker Ross Brupbacher was born. Chosen by the Bears in the fourth round of the 1970 draft out of Texas A&M, Brupbacher appeared in 56 games with 40 starts over four seasons with the Bears from 1970-72 and 1976, recording 12 interceptions and seven fumble recoveries. Between his two stints with the Bears, Brupbacher spent two seasons in the World Football League with the Birmingham Americans.
In 1910, Hall of Famer George Musso was born. An offensive and defensive lineman, Musso spent his entire 12-year NFL career with the Bears from 1933-44. He was the first player to be named All-NFL at two positions, tackle in 1935 and guard in 1937. He helped the Bears win four league titles and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1982. Musso served as a Bears captain for nine seasons and was named to the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team. He passed away on Sept. 5, 2000 at the age of 90.
In 2019, tight end Zach Miller was presented with the Ed Block Courage Award. The prestigious awards are presented to one player on all 32 NFL teams who best exemplifies a commitment to sportsmanship and courage and serves as an inspiration in the locker room. Miller received the award about 17 months after sustaining a career-ending injury that nearly cost him his left leg. On Oct. 29, 2017 in New Orleans, Miller suffered a dislocated knee and torn popliteal artery while catching an apparent 25-yard touchdown pass that was later reversed to an incomplete pass following a replay review.
In 2012, middle linebacker Brian Urlacher received the Ed Block Courage Award. Selected by the Bears with the ninth pick in the 2000 draft out of New Mexico, Urlacher played all 13 of his illustrious NFL seasons in Chicago. He was voted to eight Pro Bowls, was a four-time first-team All-Pro, was named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2000 and was selected NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2005. Urlacher was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018.
In 1916, Hall of Fame guard Danny Fortmann was born. Selected by the Bears in the ninth round of the first NFL Draft in 1936, Fortmann spent his entire eight-year NFL career with the Bears. He was voted first-team All-Pro seven times, helped the Bears win three NFL championships and was named to the NFL All-Decade Team for the 1930s. Fortmann was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1965 and was selected to the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team. He passed away on May 23, 1995 at the age of 79.
In 1972, former running back Ronnie Bull announced his retirement. Bull played nine of his 10 NFL seasons with the Bears from 1962-71 before spending his final year with the Eagles. Selected by the Bears with the seventh pick in the first round of the 1962 draft out of Baylor, Bull was named NFL rookie of the year in 1962 and helped the Bears win the league title in 1963. He appeared in 110 games with 78 starts for the Bears, rushing for 2,871 yards and nine touchdowns on 787 carries and catching 163 passes for 1,404 yards and four TDs.