Gil Brandt, Hall of Fame former Cowboys exec, dies at 91

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Former Dallas Cowboys executive and Pro Football Hall of Famer Gil Brandt died Thursday at the age of 91.

Brandt served as the vice president of player personnel for the Cowboys from 1960-1988. Brandt’s first full-time scouting job came with the San Francisco 49ers in 1958. He became the Cowboys’ chief talent scout in 1960, the season.

Brandt was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2019 as a contributor.

The Cowboys credit Brandt for the introduction of computers in scouting and evaluation along with the drafting of players such as Roger Staubach and Herschel Walker, as well as his work with undrafted players like Drew Pearson, Cliff Harris and Everson Walls.

In addition, Brandt worked for nearly two decades as an NFL media analyst.

A statement from Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on Brandt’s death:

“We are so deeply saddened by the passing of Gil Brandt – a true icon and pioneer of our sport. Gil was at the very core of the early success of the Dallas Cowboys and continued to serve as a great ambassador for the organization for decades beyond that. His contributions cemented his spot in the Ring of Honor. He was my friend and a mentor not only to me, but to countless executives, coaches, players and broadcasters across the National Football League, which rightfully earned him a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame where his legacy will be celebrated forever.

“He was an innovator and set the standard for excellence in player acquisition. From the creation of the NFL Combine to revolutionizing the NFL Draft, Gil finished his over six-decade NFL career with an eye towards the future of the league and teaching fans about the sport he loved as a radio broadcaster. Gil was as good a storyteller as it gets, with a memory as sharp as a tack. His dedication to, and passion for, this game left a lasting impact on generations of Hall of Fame players and coaches. There are very few people that have been able to have the kind of generational impact that he did. Gil was as dedicated to growing this league and sport as anyone ever was, and we are all grateful and better for it.

“Our hearts go out to Gil’s wife, Sara, his son Hunter and all of Gil’s family and friends.”

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(Photo: Joe Robbins / Getty Images)

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