It was a different time in the 1960s. In today’s NFL, teams have a timeframe for making their selections in the NFL Draft, and if they don’t turn the card in on time, they lose their pick. We saw this happen in 2003 with the Minnesota Vikings as well as in 2011 with the Baltimore Ravens.
However, back in 1964 when the Cowboys were on the clock at No. 17 overall. They delayed the draft for six hours while a doctor checked out an injured wrist on Mel Renfro.
Eventually, they decided to make the selection but they didn’t use the collegiate running back on offense. Instead, they converted him to safety where he would go on to become a star.
Renfro proved to have a nose for the ball from the start as he had seven interceptions as a rookie. He was also deadly once he got the ball in his hands, quickly returning to his offensive roots.
A 10-time Pro Bowl selection to start his career, Renfro had a league-leading 10 picks in 1969 and finished with 52, which is the most in team history. On top of that, he had 626 yards and three touchdowns on interception returns.
In addition to his role on defense, Renfro was an accomplished return man who had three career touchdowns on special teams. After playing 14 seasons in the league, Renfro was inducted to the Hall of Fame in 1996.