The Official Web Site of Dick "Night Train" Lane
The Official Web Site of Dick "Night Train" Lane The Official Web Site of Dick "Night Train" Lane
The Official Web Site of Dick "Night Train" Lane

Few players in pro-football history instilled more fear in wide receivers or running backs than Dick "Night Train" Lane, whose style of play was one of ferocity, intimidation and raw power. Known around the league for his open-field tackling and cat-like reflexes, Lane was single-handedly responsible for the banishment of the clothesline tackle and still holds the modern-day NFL record for interceptions by a rookie cornerback with 14.

Lanes journey to gridiron glory, however, is a story with many chapters, and it is a story that begins on April 16, 1928 in Austin, Texas. Born to a mother who was a prostitute and a father who was a pimp, Lanes life very well could have ended prematurely, long before he was able to achieve greatness on the football field.

At three months of age, he was adopted by Ella Lane, a widow with two children. She found the infant lying in a dumpster, left for dead. She rescued Richard from the dumpster and welcomed him whole-heartedly into her home. She treated him as one of her own, giving him the love and affection that had eluded him for the first three months of his life.

As Lane grew older, he developed an interest in football and spent many of Austins humid, summer days and nights participating in scrimmages against fellow neighborhood children. Worried about the safety and well-being of her son, Lanes foster mother constantly encouraged him to try other hobbies. Ever the competitor, Lane simply ignored her pleas.

Lane eventually decided to join the army and served his country as a Lt. Col. in World War II and the Korean War. Afterwards, he found himself sad and depressed and stuck in a job that he despised - lifting large sheets of oil-covered metal into bins. Frustrated with his employment situation, Lane went out to seek other work. By happenstance, he found his way into the Los Angeles Rams office and asked for a tryout. With only his scrapbook of high school and junior college football clippings, the Rams decided to take a gamble on Lane.

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