Former standout wideout with Pittsburgh Steelers, Baltimore Colts dies at 85
Jimmy Orr, a sure-handed wide receiver who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Colts after starring at the University of Georgia, has died. He was 85.
Orr passed away Tuesday night. His death was confirmed Wednesday by Edo Smith and Sons Funeral Home in Brunswick, Georgia.
Jim Irsay, owner of the Indianapolis Colts, said on Twitter: “Rest in peace to another NFL legend, JIMMY ORR. … “Orr’s Corner” in the south endzone at Baltimore’s Memorial Stadium was sacred ground. Our condolences to Jimmy’s family.”
Hall of Fame quarterback Johnny Unitas had plenty of targets to choose from in 1960s, including Raymond Berry, John Mackey and Lenny Moore. But he often connected with Orr in a place that became known to many as “Orrsville.”
“I must have caught 45 or 50 touchdowns in that right corner,” Orr once said. “It was sloped some, a little downhill, which helped me, speed-wise. I wasn’t all that fast.”
After playing with the Steelers from 1958-61, Orr teamed with Unitas to form a formidable passing combination.
Over 13 NFL seasons, Orr caught 400 passes for 7,914 yards and 66 touchdowns over 149 games. He averaged a whopping 19.8 yards per catch and three times led the league in yards per catch.
Orr was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1959 with Pittsburgh and in 1965 with Baltimore after catching 45 passes for 847 yards and 10 scores. His best season was in 1962, when he had 55 receptions for 874 yards and 11 TDs.
One of the most notable plays of Orr’s career came in the third Super Bowl, when the heavily favored Colts lost to the New York Jets. On a flea-flicker late in the first half, Orr was wide open and waving his arms in an effort to get the attention of quarterback Earl Morrall, who never saw him and threw an interception.
At Georgia, Orr led the Southeast Conference in receiving twice, catching 24 passes for 443 yards in 1955, and 16 passes for 237 yards in 1957. He also punted for the Bulldogs.
Orr played at Georgia with Bill Curry, who ended up being the head coach at Alabama, Georgia Tech, Kentucky and Georgia State.
Curry tweeted: “My wonderful friend/teammate Jimmy Orr died last night. He was one of those few men who could find the good when the rest of us could not. As a WR no one could cover him-He quietly put up incredible numbers, and didn’t know it! Thanks Jimmy, Love you Man.”