Best of the Packers: Top 10 defensive backs since 1960

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1. Willie Wood (1960-71)

As amazing as it seems, Willie Wood came to the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted free agent in 1960 because there wasn’t a team that was going to draft a black quarterback in that era.

Wood had played quarterback at USC, but upon his arrival in Green Bay he was recast as a free safety.

By 1962, he led the NFL with nine interceptions and in 1964 he was named to the first of his five All-Pro teams (1964-67, 1969). He was also named to eight Pro Bowls and led the NFL in punt returns with a 16.1 yard average in 1961.

He was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s All-1960s team and retired after the 1971 season.

In 12 seasons, Wood had 48 interceptions (second in Packer history) and his 699 yards in returns ranks third.

Part of five championship teams, Wood was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989, 12 years after he entered the Packers Hall of Fame.

He became a pioneer in coaching, becoming the first black head coach in the modern era of professional football when he was named to lead the Philadelphia Bell of the World Football League and later became the Canadian Football League’s first black head coach.

Next: Packers, Badgers Headline NFL's Top 100 List

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