Shar Pourdanesh

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Shar Pourdanesh
Date of birth: (1970-07-19) July 19, 1970 (age 44)
Place of birth: Tehran, Iran
Career information
Status: Retired
CFL status: International
Position(s): OT
College: Nevada
High school: University
Organizations
As player:
1993
1994-1995
1996-1998
1999-2000
2001
Cleveland Browns
Baltimore Stallions (CFL)
Washington Redskins
Pittsburgh Steelers
Oakland Raiders
Career highlights and awards
CFL All-Star: 1994
CFL East All-Star: 1994
Awards: 1994 - Leo Dandurand Trophy
Honors: 1995 - Grey Cup champion
Career stats
Playing stats at NFL.com

Shahriar Pourdanesh (born July 19, 1970 in Tehran, Iran) is a former American football offensive lineman who played in the National Football League for the Washington Redskins, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Oakland Raiders from 1996 to 2001 when in 2001 a severe knee injury cut his career short.

He previously played with the Baltimore Stallions of the Canadian Football League from 1994–1995, where he was an All-Star and won the CFL's Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman Award in 1994 (the first ever rookie to be honored so), and was a member of the Grey Cup Championship team in 1995. He was also signed to a one-year deal with the Cleveland Browns in 1993 under coach Bill Belichick. He is the only Iranian-born football player in NFL history and has over 80 professional starts in his career.

An All-American and All Conference selection, and two time team captain for the University of Nevada at Reno, where in 1992 he was awarded Nevada's Most Outstanding Offensive Player award. He was an integral part and leader of one of the nation's top offenses during that span, and helped lead the Wolfpack to three conference titles and a spot in the 1990 1AA National Title game. He was inducted into the Nevada athletic Hall of Fame in 2005.

He is a graduate of University High School in Irvine, California.

Shar and his family escaped revolution in 1979 and fled to Europe. The Pourdanesh Family settled in Irvine, California in 1983 after 3 years of exile in West Germany. He was introduced to football at age 15 and parlayed his athletic ability into a successful football career.