Art Donovan

Art Donovan

Original Name Arthur James Donovan Jr
Bronx, Bronx County, New York, USA
Death 4 Aug 2013 (aged 89)
Timonium, Baltimore County, Maryland, USA
Burial Timonium, Baltimore County, Maryland, USA
Memorial ID 114921739 · View Source
Suggest Edits

Hall of Fame Professional Football Player. For twelve seasons (1950 to 1961), he played at the left-defensive tackle position in the National Football League with the New York Yanks, Dallas Texans and Baltimore Colts. He anchored the Baltimore Colts' defensive line during their NFL Championship years of 1958 and 1959. The son of a well-known boxing referee, he attended Mount Saint Michael's High School in the Bronx and earned an athletic scholarship to attend Notre Dame University. His time with the Fighting Irish was brief as his college activities yielded to his service with United States Marine Corps (in the Pacific Theater) during World War II. Upon returning home, he enrolled at Boston College where he continued his collegiate football experience. Not regarded as a player of potential, Donovan was selected by the New York Giants during the 22nd round of the 1947 NFL Draft. It would not be until 1950, when he made his league debut with the original Baltimore Colts' franchise which folded after that season. He went onto the lowly New York Yanks (1951), followed by the Dallas Texans in 1952 (not to be confused with the Dallas Texans of the AFL), prior to finding fame and experiencing the pinnacle of success in Baltimore. With a bevy of Hall of Fame players on both sides of the ball, under the guidance of Hall of Fame coach Weeb Ewbank, the Colts emerged from the 1950s as a league dynasty. Along with Gino Marchetti, Donovan proved to be an opposing quarterback's nightmare, as the pair reeked havoc on offensive lines and provided unbearable pressure on passers. Donovan, was known to his teammates as a tension-reliever with his ability to make light of situations during games. He became a favorite of fans with his colorful personality. He played in 138 regular season games and achieved Pro-Bowl honors five consecutive times (1953 to 1957). Following his football career, he was a frequent guest on the "Tonight Show with Johnny Carson" and was often seen in beer commercials. His autobiography "Fatso" was published in 1987. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1968 and is included on the NFL 1950s All-Decade Team. His uniform number 70 has been retired by the Colts' franchise. He died of complications from a respiratory ailment.

Bio by: C.S.

Family Members




How famous was Art Donovan?

Current rating:

70 votes

to cast your vote.

  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: C.S.
  • Added: 4 Aug 2013
  • Find a Grave Memorial 114921739
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Art Donovan (5 Jun 1924–4 Aug 2013), Find a Grave Memorial no. 114921739, citing Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens, Timonium, Baltimore County, Maryland, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .