Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - Former Carolina Panthers president and Pro Football Hall of Fame offensive lineman Mike McCormack died Friday morning. He was 83 years old.
McCormack was a six-time Pro Bowl pick with the New York Yankees and Cleveland Browns from 1951-62 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1984. He was an assistant coach under Vince Lombardi and George Allen before taking head coaching positions with the Philadelphia Eagles (1973-75), Baltimore Colts (1980-81) and Seattle Seahawks (1982).
After serving as president and general manager of the Seahawks until 1988, he was hired by Jerry Richardson in 1989 to help bring the NFL to the Carolinas. Charlotte was awarded an expansion franchise in 1993 and the Panthers began play two years later.
McCormack became the team's first president and retired after the Panthers reached the NFC title game in their second year of existence in 1996.
"It is safe to say that we would probably not have a team in the Carolinas if it were not for Mike McCormack," said Richardson in a statement. "He had the contacts in the National Football league and was universally respected by everyone associated with professional football. He was a wonderful and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Ann, and the entire McCormack family."
McCormack helped the Browns win NFL championships in 1954 and '55. He had a record of 29-51-1 in 81 games as an NFL head coach.