If there were one job in the world that I could have, it would have to be a punter for the NFL. While some may point to being a CEO, influencer, or President of the United States, to me, being a punter has to be one of the best jobs.
Think about it.
You practice, go out there a couple of possessions to boom a football downfield, and then you get the opportunity to hit someone.
Plus, if you're at the top of your game, you get paid handsomely.
I'm confident that I'm a punter in an alternate universe.
But enough of my aspirations and dreams, as there is a guy who was actually a punter in his life– and he played for the Dallas Cowboys during the 1970s.
While I didn't see him live, after seeing some footage of him, I have to admit he was pretty damn good.
Good enough to be the Greatest #10 in franchise history.
This player deserves his flowers because he not only finished among the leaders in punting average for the franchise, but he also still holds the record for the longest punt in franchise history of 84-yards.
Add in that he was a part of a Super-Bowl winning team–he was an easy shoo-in for today's honor.
So, without further ado, let's welcome Punter Ron Widby.
Rod Widby's Football Career
Before Widby got his feet wet for the Cowboys, it was interesting to discover that he got drafted in three professional sports leagues. Yes, three sports leagues, and no, I didn't stutter.
A four-year standout athlete at the University of Tennessee, Widby was “that guy” in his senior year as he averaged 42.8 yards on punts and 22 points and eight rebounds for the Volunteers basketball team, which ultimately got him noticed in professional football & basketball scenes.
The New Orleans Saints (NFL), New Orleans Buccaneers (ABA), and Chicago Bulls (NBA) were the three teams who spent draft capital on Widby in 1967.
While Widby would go with the Saints initially, after he got cut, he made his to the Buccaneers for one season– before coming to your beloved Cowboys in 1968.
In his first year with the franchise, Widby averaged 40.9 yards per punt, which was good enough for 8th in the NFL.
But, the ironic part for me was that he tied Philadelphia Eagles P Sam Baker, who previously punted for the Boys during the early 1960s. (I'm just a nerd, and I like numbers, so it's not that ironic. Just bear with me.)
For his remaining three years with the franchise, Widby would average 41.8 yards per punt and snag a Pro Bowl and Super Bowl Ring along the way. Although he did leave to the Green Bay Packers via trade in 1972, Widby is a Cowboys Legend in my book– even if he played only four seasons.
So with that in mind, let's all get up and celebrate Widby as he is the Greatest #10 in franchise history, and I hope he's booming footballs up in heaven.
May he rest in peace.