Robert Duke Osborn was born on February 1, 1897 in Falls Creek, Pennsylvania.
After high school, Osborn attended Penn State University.
Osborn made his professional debut in the National Football League in 1921 with the Canton Bulldogs. During the course of his career, Osborn also played for the Cleveland Bulldogs and Pottsville Maroons. He spent a total of 8 years in the NFL. Osborne also became part owner of the Maroons in 1928, when team"s owner, Doctor John G. Streigel, "loaned" the team to three players Wilbur "Pete" Henry, Herb Stein and Osborn.
After his career in football Osborn became a general superintendent for Oldsmobile’s assembly division.