Longtime NFL executive Bill Tobin dies at 83

Bill Tobin, whose long NFL career saw him serve as General Manager of both the Bears and the Colts, has died at the age of 83.

Tobin's death was announced today by the Bengals. Tobin spent two decades consulting with the Bengals, and his son Duke Tobin is the Bengals' director of player personnel.

Bill Tobin and his brother Vince Tobin both played college football at Missouri. Vince Tobin would go on to have a long coaching career, including a stint as head coach of the Cardinals. Vince Tobin died last year at the age of 79.

Bill Tobin was drafted by the Houston Oilers in 1963, played one season for them, and then played two seasons in the Canadian Football League. After his playing days ended, Tobin spent many years working in player personnel for the Bears, and he received a lot of the credit for building the 1985 Bears roster that won the Super Bowl.

In 1994 Tobin became General Manager of the Colts. He was running the draft room when they drafted future Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk in 1994, he built the team that made a surprise run to the AFC Championship Game in 1995, and he was running the draft room when they drafted future Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison Sr. in 1996.

It was also with the Colts that Tobin gained his greatest notoriety, helping to make the NFL draft must-see TV when he demanded to know, "Who in the hell is Mel Kiper anyway?" when Kiper criticized his picks on ESPN in 1994.

He was a true NFL success story,” Bengals owner Mike Brown said in a statement. “He was a good person and I considered him a good friend. With Bill, I respected everything he said. I just took it as a given. He had an eye for players and what they would develop into. If he said the guy was a good player, then he was a good player; that’s all I would need to know. We will miss him.”