I’m back for the second installment of my draft pick countdown. This list runs all the way to what would be the end of the 12th round from 1979 through 1992. I’m almost finished compiling all the names of the late round picks that run up until 336, with picks like the Broncos Karl Mecklenburg & Tyrone Braxton, Browns QB Brian Sipe, former Redskins C Matt Elliott & DE Fred Stokes, Vikings WR Anthony Carter, and Ravens K Matt Stover. As usual, they’re not all going to be all stars. In some cases, i’m lucky just finding a guy that made an NFL roster with a pick so late. There’s going to be alot more consecutive picks once we get inside pick 300. I think there’s only three or four picks out of the first 300 that I couldn’t find a player for.
So, for now, here’s the latest list to hold you over until part three:
14th round-375th pick. Kansas City Chiefs-Robert Holmes, RB, Southern University, 1968
He played seven years with the Chiefs, Oilers and Chargers. He was an AFL All Star in 1969, and even contributed to their Super Bowl victory over the Vikings in the final AFL-NFL Championship game before the two leagues officially merged.
15th round-373rd pick. New Orleans Saints-Larry Cipa, QB, Michigan, 1974
He was forced to start in one game as a rookie when starter Archie Manning and backup Bobby Scott went down. He only stuck around for two seasons before he was traded to the Buccaneers. He was waived by Tampa Bay after failing a physical.
15th round-365th pick. Houston Oilers-Billy “White Shoes” Johnson, WR, Widener, 1974
Nicknamed “White Shoes” because he dyed his shoes white after a dare by a teammate in high school. He was one of the most well known kick returners in the 70’s, scoring 5 touchdowns on punt returns and 2 on kickoff returns, all in his first four seasons. He spent seven seasons as an Oiler. Then went to Montreal of the CFL for the 1981 season. He returned to the NFL with Atlanta in 1982, and won the Comeback Player of the Year Award in 1983. He was also named to the Pro Bowl that year after leading the Falcons in receiving. He played with the Falcons through the 1987 season, then came back for one last game with the Redskins in 1988.
14th round-364th pick. Pittsburgh Steelers-Mike Collier, RB, Morgan State, 1975
He got a Super Bowl ring during his only season with the Steelers. He averaged 5.9 yards a carry, ran for 124 yards and scored three touchdowns as a rookie. He played for the Bills in 1977 & 1979, but didn’t do enough to stick around.
14th round-357th pick. Denver Broncos-Marlin Briscoe, QB/WR, Nebraska-Omaha, 1968
He started out at quarterback as a rookie, and became the first black starting quarterback. He threw for 14 touchdowns as a rookie, but only completed 41.5 percent of his passes. He was released by Denver in 1969 and claimed by the Bills, who moved him to wide receiver. The move went really well, as he led the Bills in touchdowns catches in each of his three seasons there. They traded him to the Dolphins in 1972 for a first round pick, and that #1 pick turned out to be Hall of Fame guard Joe DeLamielleure. He led the undefeated Dolphins team in touchdown catches, and even had more catches than Paul Warfield during the 1973 season. He went on to play for the Chargers (1975), Lions (1975) and Patriots (1976) before retiring with 224 catches, 3,537 yards, and 30 touchdowns.
14th round-356th pick. Dallas Cowboys-Scott Laidlaw, RB, Stanford, 1975
He played five seasons (1975-1979) with the Cowboys, earning a Super Bowl ring on their championship team that won Super Bowl XII. He didn’t play much behind guys like Tony Dorsett, his career high was 424 yards in 1976.
14th round-355th pick. L.A. Rams-Larry Brooks, DT, Virginia State, 1972
He spent his entire 11 year career (1972-1982) with the L.A. Rams. He became a starter midway thru his rookie season. He had 9 sacks in his second year, but their defensive line was so awesome he was still ranked behind Jack Youngblood and Fred Dryer. He was named to 5 consecutive Pro Bowls from 1976 to 1980, so he certainly got the credit he deserved. After retiring from football he became an assistant coach, and he spent more than 20 years as a defensive line coach in the NFL.
14th round-349th pick. N.Y. Jets-Joe Fields, C, Widener, 1975
He played center and guard for the Jets from 1975 thru 1987, and made the Pro Bowl in 1981 and 1982. After his 14 seasons with the Jets, he spent one last year with the Giants in 1988. I have to say, getting 15 years out of a 14th round pick is pretty impressive, but believe it or not, there’s one player down below that lasted a little longer.
14th round-348th pick. New Orleans Saints-Doug Sutherland, DE, Wisconsin Superior, 1970
He made a name for himself as part of the famed Purple People Eaters defense with the Vikings. He was picked up by Minnesota in 1971 after spending his rookie season with the Saints. He went on to play in Super Bowls VIII, IX, and XI during his ten years (1971-1980) as a Viking. He played one more year with the Seahawks in 1981 before retiring.
14th round-346th pick. Philadelphia Eagles-Mark Moseley, K, Stephen F. Austin, 1970
Spent his rookie season with the Eagles, then two seasons with the Oilers (1971-1972), before going on to a stellar career with the Redskins. He joined the Redskins in 1974 after spending a year out of football. He went on to be a three time Pro Bowl player, and led the NFL in scoring four times. He was named the NFL MVP in the strike shortened 1982 season, and got a Super Bowl ring that year when they won Super Bowl XVII. He lasted 16 years in the NFL, retiring after finishing the 1986 season with the Browns.
12th round-344th pick. L.A. Rams-Jim Jodat, RB, Carthage, 1976
He played seven seasons in the NFL with the Rams (1977-1979), Seahawks (1980-1981), and Chargers (1982-1983). He had a career high 632 yards and 5 touchdowns with the Seahawks in 1980. He never could duplicate that success, and moved on to San Diego in 1982.
13th round-338th pick. N. Y. Jets-Steve O’Neal, P, Texas A & M, 1969
He only played 5 years in the NFL, four with the Jets (1969-1972), and one with the Saints (1973), but he set a record that can never be beaten. As a rookie, he had a punt where he was forced to kick from the one yard line. That punt went over the returner’s head, and rolled almost to the end zone. By the time it was picked up, he was tackled at the one yard line, resulting in a record long 98 yard punt. It can’t ever be beaten since a longer punt would go into the end zone, but it is possible that someone could eventually tie it.
13th round-337th pick. Washington Redskins-Dennis Johnson, DT, Delaware, 1973
He played four years with the Redskins (1974-1977), and one (1978) with the Bills. He had a 57 yard interception return in the second season, and one for two yards in his third year.
Information obtained using nfl.com’s historical players search engine, and wikipedia bios.