By Clay Shannon
Tony Canadeo lived for 84 years, from 1919 to 2003.
Although he was born and grew up in Chicago, Canadeo attended college in the far west, at Gonzaga in Spokane, Washington. There he acquired the nickname “The Gray Ghost of Gonzaga” due to his prematurely graying hair.
What Canadeo was best known for were his years as a member of the Green Bay Packers, for whom he played from 1941 to 1952 (with the exception of most of 1944 and all of 1945, at the end of World War 2, when he was in the army). He was also in the Navy for awhile in 1943.
The 77th pick of the 1941 draft, Canadeo’s career surpassed that of most, if not all, of those selected before him. After all, he’s the only player from the 1941 draft who ended up in the NFL Hall of Fame.
Much like Herb Adderley a couple of decades later, the Packers already had two stars in the offensive backfield when Canadeo was signed (Clarke Hinkle and Arnie Herber) – yes, eventual cornerback Herb Adderley was drafted as a running back, and the Packers already had Paul Hornung and Jim Taylor – but future Hall of Famers Hinkle and Herber were nearing the end of their...