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Damon Huard playing against the Steelers in 2006.
|No. 11, 19|
|Date of birth:||July 9, 1973|
|Place of birth:||Yakima, Washington|
|Height:||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Weight:||218 lb (99 kg)|
|* Offseason and/or practice squad member only|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
Damon Paul Huard (born July 9, 1973) is a former American football quarterback. He is a Chief Administrator and fundraiser for the University of Washington football program, his alma mater. He was signed by the Cincinnati Bengals as an undrafted free agent in 1996. Huard also played for the Kansas City Chiefs, New England Patriots and Miami Dolphins. Huard won two Super Bowl rings with the Patriots.
Huard was the first to hold a snap for kicker Ryan Longwell in their junior-high years at Aylen Junior High. Huard attended Puyallup High School in Puyallup, Washington, where he was a letterman in football and basketball. In football, as a senior, he was named the Powerade State Player of the Year and won All-America honors. He took the Puyallup Vikings to the State AAA championship that year where they lost to Cascade High School. He has a younger brother, Brock, who also played quarterback for the University of Washington and in the NFL.
After graduating from high school, Huard attended the University of Washington, where he redshirted as a freshman in 1991. He started for the first time in 1993, and continued as a starter through his senior season in 1995. That season, he passed for 2,415 yards and 11 touchdowns. He finished his career as the Huskies' all-time passing leader with 5,692 yards.
After spending the 1996 season out of football, Huard signed with the Miami Dolphins on April 24, 1997. He was released during final cuts on August 24, 1997, but was re-signed to the team's practice squad two days later. He was promoted to the active roster on September 6 and spent the remainder of the season as the Dolphins' third quarterback. Following the season, Huard played in NFL Europe for the Frankfurt Galaxy. In 1998, Huard saw action in two games for the Dolphins as a reserve, while acting as the team's third quarterback in eight games. He finished the season six-of-nine for 85 yards and an interception.
Huard began the 1999 season as the Dolphins' holder on the field goal unit, but following an injury to starter Dan Marino, in the future Hall of Famer's final season, Huard started his first NFL game on October 24 after replacing Marino on October 17. He won his first three games that he started, tying a Dolphins record set by Earl Morrall in 1972. Huard would post a 4–1 record before Marino returned in November, finishing the regular season with eight touchdowns, four interceptions, and 1,288 passing yards. Huard would also see time in the playoffs, replacing Marino for the second half of a 62–7 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. He signed a two-year contract extension with the Dolphins on December 3, 1999.
Despite Huard's performance in 1999, Jay Fiedler was signed to be the Dolphins' starting quarterback in 2000. Huard would start one game in Fiedler's place, on November 26, a win for the Dolphins.
New England Patriots
Following the 2000 season, Huard was signed by the New England Patriots as a free agent. In the team's 2001 training camp, Huard competed with second-year Tom Brady and Michael Bishop for the backup job behind long-time starter Drew Bledsoe; Brady would become the team's second quarterback and Huard the third for the start of the season. When Bledsoe was injured in Week 2, Brady became the Patriots' starter for the remainder of the season, while Huard was the backup until Bledsoe returned in Week 10. Huard, as the third quarterback, won his first Super Bowl ring in February 2002 with a Patriots win over the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI.
Huard appeared in his first game as a Patriot in 2002, leading a touchdown drive in a blowout win over the Jets on September 15. Later in the season, Huard would enter the game in a punt formation and run a successful quarterback sneak for a first down.
While a backup for the Patriots in 2003, Huard saw time in two more games while also seeing time on the team's scout team during practice. For the AFC Championship against the Indianapolis Colts, Huard mimicked the line calls and audibles of Peyton Manning for the Patriots' defense during practice.
Kansas City Chiefs
Huard signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as a free agent following the 2003 season. He did not play in a game for his first two seasons with the Chiefs (2004 and 2005), acting as the team's third quarterback. In the 2006 season opener, starter Trent Green left the game after suffering a concussion and was replaced by Huard. He would start the Chiefs' next seven games, posting a 5–3 record until suffering a groin injury. Green started the remainder of the season and the team's playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts. However, following the season, the Chiefs signed Huard to a three-year contract extension, and Green was traded to the Miami Dolphins. During the 2006 NFL season, Huard set the NFL record for lowest percentage passes intercepted in a season among qualified players, with only one of his 244 attempts being intercepted.
In the Chiefs' 2007 training camp, Huard competed with second-year Brodie Croyle, the team's third-round draft choice in the 2006 NFL Draft. Huard was named the starter on August 25, and started the first nine games of the season, going 4–5. In his final start, Huard suffered a back injury and was replaced by Croyle, but Croyle himself was injured after his second start, both losses, and Huard returned as the starter in Week 13. Huard suffered a hand injury in the game and Croyle started the Chiefs' next two games. In Week 16, Croyle was injured again and Huard saw time in a reserve before Croyle returned to start the last game of the season. Croyle and Huard combined to post a nine-game losing streak to end the season.
Croyle started the first game of the 2008 season for the Chiefs, but again suffered an injury and was replaced by Huard. In Week 2, Huard started but suffered a concussion and was replaced by Tyler Thigpen, a seventh-round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft. Thigpen started the Chiefs' Week 3 game before Huard returned for Weeks 4 and 5. Croyle returned after the bye week in Week 7 to start, was injured again, and replaced by Huard, who suffered a thumb injury. He was placed on injured reserve the next week, ending his season. The same week, Croyle was also placed on injured reserve, leaving Thigpen as the Chiefs' starter for the remainder of the season.
Following the season, Scott Pioli, the Patriots' director of player personnel during Huard's tenure in New England, was hired to be the Chiefs' general manager. Huard was released by the Chiefs on February 24, 2009, roughly a week before Pioli traded for Matt Cassel, a Patriots backup who replaced an injured Brady in 2008, to be the Chiefs' starter.
San Francisco 49ers
Huard signed with the San Francisco 49ers on March 4, 2009, competing for a job behind Alex Smith and Shaun Hill with 2009 fifth-round pick Nate Davis. Huard lost the job and was released on September 1, 2009.
University of Washington
Washington announced on Monday, 23 July 2013 that former Husky Damon Huard had taken a new role as Chief Administrative Officer of the football program. Huard has been a fundraiser the last three seasons in the athletic department (2010).
- Lee, Brenden; Gellerman, Jacob; King, Robert, eds. (2015). Official 2015 National Football League Record & Fact Book (PDF). New York: National Football League. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 6, 2015.
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