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This Day in Buffalo Sports History: The second time around

   July 28, 1972 -- O.J. Simpson signed a four-year contract when he was drafted by the Buffalo Bills with the first overall pick in 1969. The dollar amount was said to be a total of $215,000.

   Simpson's best season in the first three years was nothing special. He ran for 742 yards and five touchdowns. Of course, Simpson didn't have much help. That team finished 1-13, the worst in the NFL.

   Even though the old deal hadn't expired, Simpson agreed on this day in the summer of 1972 to an extension of the old deal. Terms were not disclosed, but he probably got a raise.

   Then he went out and showed he deserved it. Whatever the final numbers turned out to be, it was a bargain. Simpson had one of the greatest stretches by a running back in the history of the NFL.

   He had five straight seasons of reaching at least 1,000 yards, and won four rushing titles. Simpson also was named the NFL's player of the year three times in that stretch.

   When his football career was over, Simpson quickly landed in Canton, Ohio, as a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

--- Budd Bailey


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About Sports, Ink

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has served in a variety of roles in Buffalo sports in the past 35 years, including reporter, talk-show host, baseball announcer, public relations staffer and author. He covers the Bandits and running for The News when not working as an editor.