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Former Eagles DB/HB Craft dies at 89

PHILADELPHIA -- William Russell "Russ" Craft, a member of the Eagles' 1948 and 1949 championship teams and who shares the NFL record of four interceptions in a game, died Tuesday. He was 89.

Craft, a 10-year NFL veteran who also was a player and a defensive coach with the Pittsburgh Steelers, died in Wellsburg, W.Va., the Eagles said in a statement Thursday. No cause of death was immediately given.

Craft was a defensive back and halfback who played with the Eagles from 1946 to 1953 and with the Steelers from 1953 to 1955. The two-time Pro Bowl selection had 22 career interceptions, including four in a game against the Chicago Cardinals in September 1950. He shares that NFL record with 17 players.

Selected in the 15th round of the 1943 draft out of Alabama, Craft played in 100 career NFL games. He scored seven regular-season touchdowns and also had one TD in the Eagles' 28-21 loss to the Cardinals in the 1947 title game.

He ran the Craft Service Station in Weirton, W.Va., from 1951 to 1985, and served two terms as the Brooke County Sheriff (1960 to 1972).

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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