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Meet the First Ever African American Head Coach in NFL History

Frederick Douglass Fritz Pollard

In 1920, Frederick Douglass "Fritz" Pollard became one of the first two African American players in the NFL. The team he played for was called the Akron Pros, and in 1921, he became the team's head coach - making him the first African American head coach in NFL history.An Expert On and Off the Field

Pollard started out as player on Brown University's football team. Along with Bobby Marshall, Pollard was one of the first pro African American football players in the United States.

Later, his experience as a football player helped him to strategize as a coach. Though he experienced discrimination and was looked down upon due to his race, Pollard remained an excellent coach and is known today as an excellent player and coach.

A History of Greatness

After playing in and coaching for the NFL, Pollard explored various other avenues of work. Pollard's love of football remained throughout his life; He was the athletic director for Lincoln University in Pennsylvania and founded the Brown Bombers, a professional football team. Later, he worked in music and film production. Though met with challenges, Pollard worked hard and was rewarded with success.

Pollard's experience as an NFL player and the first African American head coach in NFL history is one to be remembered. Pollard helped to pave the way for many champion football players and coaches, and left behind an amazing legacy.