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Hall of Fame NFL coach Chuck Noll dies at 82

Reuters
File photo of former professional football player Chuck Noll in Canton, Ohio
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Former professional football player Chuck Noll poses with a bust of himself upon being admitted into …

(Reuters) - Former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Chuck Noll, who helped transform the team into one of the league's dominant franchises, has died at the age of 82, the National Football League said late on Friday.

Noll, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1993, led Pittsburgh to four Super Bowl titles in the 1970s.

Citing the Allegheny County Medical Examiner, CNN reported Noll died of natural causes at his home in Sewickley, Pennsylvania, in the presence of family members. He had suffered from Alzheimer's and cardiac ailments. He was pronounced dead at 9:45 p.m. ET (0145 GMT) by an emergency medical technician.

Noll coached the Steelers for 23 seasons from 1969 until 1991, guiding the franchise to Super Bowl wins in the 1974, 1975, 1978 and 1979 seasons. Overall, he built a 209-156-1 record in all games.

In his first year at the helm the Steelers finished 1-13. Three years later, the Steelers reached the AFC championship game and two years after that they won their first Super Bowl.

"Through shrewd drafts and strong guidance, Noll helped team owner Art Rooney and the Steelers shed their 'lovable losers' image," according to a biography on the Pro Football Hall of Fame's website.

"He quickly established a building program with an emphasis on the annual college draft to realize the ultimate goal of an NFL championship."

(Reporting by Julian Linden in New York and Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Frank Pingue)

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