(SportsNetwork.com) – Ed Sabol, whose revolutionary NFL Films was key to the
league’s growth over the decades since he founded the production company in
the 1960s, has died at the age of 98.
The NFL said Sabol died Monday at his home in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Sabol founded NFL Films in his 40s and led it until 1985, when his son Steve
Steve Sabol, who started out as a cameraman for his father’s company, died of
brain cancer in September 2012 just weeks from his 70th birthday.
After starting the production company that eventually became NFL Films, Ed
Sabol acquired the rights to film the 1962 NFL Championship Game, famously
offering NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle double the $1,500 bid.
He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame almost 50 years later in
2011, having overseen many of the innovations fans might now take for granted.
Among them are the use of microphones on players, coaches and officials and
the addition of music to footage of games.
NFL Films, an iconic brand which has impacted the way the sport is consumed
for generations, won 52 Emmy Awards during Sabol’s tenure and has claimed many
NFL teams and players were quick to offer their condolences and NFL Network
scheduled a broadcast of “Ed Sabol: A Football Life” for Monday evening.
“His impact on the game is everlasting,” the Tampa Bay Buccaneers said in a