Charlie Krueger, a star defensive tackle who spent his 16-year NFL career with the San Francisco 49ers, has died. He was 84.
The team said Saturday he died in Clayton, California, but did not disclose other details. The San Francisco Chronicle said the cause was heart and kidney failure.
Krueger played for the 49ers from 1958 to 1973, one of the longest tenured players in team history. He was part of teams that won three consecutive NFC West titles from 1970-72. His No. 70 jersey was retired in 1974 and he joined the club’s Hall of Fame in 2009.
“Charlie was known as the ‘Textbook Tackle’ for his reputation as a technician and his tremendous strength,” the team said in a statement. “He was a tough, resilient and smart player who looked out for his teammates, both on and off the field.”
He played in 198 games, the seventh most in franchise history and second most among defensive linemen. He earned Pro Bowl honors in 1960 and 1964 and was an All-Pro in 1960, 1965 and 1966.
Charles Andrew Krueger was born in Caldwell, Texas, and attended Texas A&M. In 1956 and 1957 he was an All-American under famed coach Bear Bryant. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1983. Krueger was drafted ninth overall by the 49ers in 1958 and sat out his rookie season because of injury.
Survivors include his wife, Kris.