Former NFL Owner Art Modell Dies at 87: National Football League legend Art Modell passed away at John Hopkins Hospital today. His death is attributed to natural causes. His son David Modell announced the death saying that he and his brother John were at their father’s deathbed.
According to reports, Art Modell died very peacefully without any serious ailments. He was 87 years old. Art’s wife Pat Modell also passed away last year at the age of 80.
Art Modell was a man who gave professional football a place among the other widely popular games. The National Football League owes its success and popularity to him. He was also eyed with regret by many fans after he moved the Cleveland franchise to Baltimore in the year 1996. This act left his entire career with a blotch and the Ohio fans never forgave him.
Art Modell was owner of the Cleveland Browns for a very long time, precisely 1961 to 1995. During this period they won their last championship in year 1964. Later in 1996 he moved the beloved team to Baltimore and renamed it the Ravens. This caused quite uproar among Cleveland NFL fans. This event left Cleveland without a football team for three seasons; this was fixed later as Alfred Lerner returned the Browns as a franchise in year 1999.
In 2000, the Ravens won the coveted Super Bowl title under Modell’s leadership. In seven years following that year the Ravens had qualified till the semifinals. In addition, Modell played a great role in the NFL agreements and various decisions. He was the NFL president from year 1967 to 1969. In 1970 he initiated the contract between the NFL and the ABC television network for the live game broadcasts.
He was born as Arthur Bertram Modell on June 23, 1925 in Brooklyn, New York. He is survived by his two sons and six grandchildren.