Canadian Football League career
Drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League in the 1954 NFL Draft, Hal Patterson opted to sign with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League in 1954. Known as "Prince" Hal, in 1956, he won the Jeff Russel Memorial Trophy then the Schenley Award as the CFL's Outstanding Player. That same year, Patterson set a record that has yet to be matched when he caught passes for 338 yards in a single game and set the record of 88 catches that stood up for 11 years before Terry Evanshen broke it in 1967.
Patterson was a member of the Alouettes until being part of a controversial trade in 1960 that sent him to the last-place Hamilton Tiger-Cats with fellow Montreal star quarterback Sam Etcheverry. Patterson's impact was immediate, as he helped to lead the Tiger-Cats to the 1961 Grey Cup, where the Ti-Cats lost in overtime to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Hal Patterson still holds the record of 580 yards for Most Pass Receiving Yards in Grey Cup history. Patterson scored 54 touchdowns in his 14-year CFL career and had 34 games with at least 100 yards in pass receptions. He was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 1971. In November, 2006, Patterson was voted one of the CFL's top 50 players (#13) in a poll conducted by Canadian sports network TSN.