Erich Barnes, the hard-hitting, speedy cornerback who helped propel the Giants to a few consecutive NFL championship video games within the early Sixties, died on Friday in Hastings-on-Hudson, NY He was 86.
His loss of life, in a hospital, was introduced by the Giants, who mentioned it got here after an extended sickness however didn’t present further particulars.
Enjoying for 14 seasons — three with the Chicago Bears, 4 with the Giants and 7 with the Cleveland Browns — Barnes was usually matched towards the league’s finest large receivers.
In his profession he intercepted 45 passes and ran seven again for touchdowns. He tied an NFL report for the longest interception return for a landing when he picked off a go by the Dallas Cowboys’ Eddie LeBaron in an October 1961 recreation and raced 102 yards for a rating.
At 6 toes 2 inches and 200 kilos, Barnes was of excellent measurement for a cornerback of his time.
“I used to be like a dictator or intimidator,” he instructed the web site scout.com in 2008. “I stored receivers off guard. I by no means allow them to get right into a rhythm. I at all times needed the receiver to go the place I needed him to go.”
Barnes was voted to the Professional Bowl with the Bears in 1959, with the Giants every season from 1961 to 1964, and with the Browns in 1968. He was chosen as a first-team All-Professional in 1961, when he intercepted seven passes, returning two for scores.
“Barnes was tall and lean, and he had a little bit imply streak in him,” the famously rugged Giants center linebacker Sam Huff recalled in “Powerful Stuff: The Man within the Center” (1988), written with Leonard Shapiro. “In case you caught a ball in entrance of Erich Barnes, he would make you pay for it. And while you caught one thing close to the sideline, you’d higher get means out of bounds as a result of Erich would come after you.”
Erich (pronounced EE-rich) Theodore Barnes was born on July 4, 1935, in Elkhart, Ind. His father, Sylvester, was an actual property investor; his mom, Lura, was a homemaker.
Erich grew up a Browns fan. Recruited by Purdue, he performed halfback on offense and protection and was a receiver as nicely. He was chosen by the Bears within the fourth spherical of the 1958 NFL draft.
Barnes joined the Giants in 1961 by way of a three-way commerce by which they despatched cornerback Lindon Crow to the Los Angeles Rams.
Coached by Allie Sherman, the Giants gained the Jap Convention title from 1961 by 1963 however misplaced yearly within the NFL championship recreation, twice to the Inexperienced Bay Packers after which to the Bears.
The Giants groups of that period, that includes Andy Robustelli, Dick Modzelewski, Roosevelt Grier and Jim Katcavage on the road, Huff at linebacker, Barnes and Dick Lynch at cornerback and Jim Patton at security, turned defensive play right into a glamorous a part of professional soccer. Quarterback YA Tittle, obtained from the San Francisco 49ers, grew to become a New York celeb along with his good passing.
Barnes intercepted 18 passes whereas taking part in for the Giants, and his block of a Packer punt within the 1962 NFL championship recreation resulted in an end-zone restoration by Jim Collier, giving the Giants their solely landing in a 16-7 loss.
One in every of Barnes’s most spectacular performs got here when the Giants performed the Philadelphia Eagles at Yankee Stadium in November 1961.
Pete Previte, a clubhouse attendant, instructed to the Big coaches that, when the time was ripe for an extended go, they put a number of the quickest gamers who weren’t usually used on offense right into a formation.
Late within the first half, Sherman inserted Barnes and Patton as slot receivers, changing two operating backs, whereas maintaining his common pass-catchers, flanker Kyle Rote and ends Del Shofner and Joe Walton, within the recreation. All 5 headed downfield, and Tittle threw a 62-yard landing go to Barnes. The Giants gained the sport, 38-21.
After the Giants’ three convention championship seasons, the core of the crew started to depart by trades or retirement. After going 2-10-2 in 1964, the Giants traded Barnes to the Browns in August 1965.
Barnes retired after the 1971 season and have become a planner of particular occasions for companies within the New York space.
He’s survived by his spouse, Violet Ward Barnes; his daughters, Charissa Barnes-Johnson, Djuna Barnes and Tessa Robinson; his sisters, Joan Murkey and Linda Turner; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He had houses in Yonkers, NY, and Joliet, Ailing.
Barnes was a heady participant, however his popularity for hits that generally went over the sting. Sports activities Illustrated as soon as quoted him as saying that “once I was with the Giants and I’d come into Cleveland, they used to name me soiled,” however that after he was traded to the Browns, “the Giants would name me soiled and Cleveland would name me aggressive.”
As he put it, “All of it depends upon the place you have been taking part in.”