Cliff Livingston, 79, an NFL linebacker who played the first eight seasons of his 12-year pro football career for the New York Giants before ending it with the Los Angeles Rams, died recently at his home in Las Vegas from complications of Lewy body dementia, Parkinson’s disease and congestive heart failure.
Livingston, who played defensive end at UCLA under Coach Red Sanders in 1950 and ‘51, became a linebacker and special teams player in New York from 1954 through the 1961 season.
During his time with the Giants, the team won the NFL championship game in 1956 over the Chicago Bears and appeared in three more title games, losing to the Baltimore Colts in 1958 (often called “the greatest game ever played”) and 1959 and to the Green Bay Packers in 1961.
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Livingston was traded to the Minnesota Vikings in 1962 and he retired after one year there. He came back to play for the Rams the next season, when his former Giants teammate Harlan Svare became the Rams’ coach. After three seasons, Livingston retired for good.
Born July 2, 1930, in Compton, Livingston served in the Army between his time at UCLA and with the Giants. His older brother Howie also played in the NFL.
When Livingston’s football career ended, he capitalized on his rugged good looks by landing minor acting roles in TV shows and commercials.