Marlin Briscoe, Pro Football’s First Black Starting QB, Dies At 76

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FILE - St. Louis Cardinals football player Marlin Briscoe (86) is shown in August 1975. Marlin Briscoe, the first Black starting quarterback in the American Football League, died Monday, June 27, 2022. His daughter, Angela Marriott, told The Associated Press that Briscoe, 76, died of pneumonia at a hospital in Norwalk, California. (AP Photo/File)
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Marlin Briscoe, the first Black starting quarterback in professional football and a member of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, died on June 27, 2022. He was 76 years old.

According to the Associated Press, Briscoe’s daughter Angela Marriott said her father passed away from pneumonia at a hospital in Norwalk, California. He had been hospitalized with circulation issues in his legs.

An Omaha, Nebraska native, Briscoe was a star quarterback for Omaha University before he was drafted by the Denver Broncos (at the time an American Football League team) in the 14th round in 1968. Drafted as a cornerback, he informed the Broncos that he’d return home to become a teacher if he wasn’t permitted to tryout at QB. Denver agreed.

In 1972, he was traded to the Miami and took part in the Dolphins’ undefeated season that year.

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