Zatkoff in 1952
|No. 74, 57|
|Position:||Linebacker, defensive end|
|Date of birth:||March 25, 1931|
|Place of birth:||Hamtramck, Michigan|
|Height:||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight:||216 lb (98 kg)|
|High school:||Hamtramck (MI)|
|NFL Draft:||1953 / Round: 5 / Pick: 55|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at PFR|
Roger Zatkoff (born March 25, 1931) is a former American football player and businessman.
A native of Hamtramck, Michigan, Zatkoff played college football for the University of Michigan from 1950 to 1952 and was selected as a first-team All-Big Ten Conference player in both 1951 and 1952. He later played professional football in the National Football League (NFL) for the Green Bay Packers from 1953 to 1956 and for the Detroit Lions in 1957 and 1958. He was selected as an All-Pro player by in 1954 (UP first team, AP second team), 1955 (AP and TSN first team), 1956 (NEA second team). He was also a member of the 1957 Detroit Lions team that won the NFL championship.
After retiring from football, Zatkoff operated a manufacturing supply company based in the Detroit area. The company became the largest independent distributor of seals in North America.
University of Michigan
Zatkoff enrolled at the University of Michigan in 1949 and played college football for Bennie Oosterbaan's Michigan Wolverines football teams from 1950 to 1952. As a freshman, he was awarded the Meyer Morton Award as the freshman player showing the most promise. He started nine games at linebacker for the 1950 Michigan Wolverines football team that defeated Ohio State in the famous Snow Bowl game, won the Big ten championship, and defeated the University of California in the 1951 Rose Bowl. He started all nine games at linebacker for the 1951 Wolverines, and he was selected by the Associated Press as a first-team linebacker on the 1951 All-Big Ten Conference football team. As a senior in 1952, he started all nine games for Michigan at the linebacker position and was selected as a first-team All-Big Ten player by both the Associated Press and United Press.
Zatkoff was selected by the Green Bay Packers in the fifth round (55th overall pick) of the 1953 NFL Draft. He played linebacker for the Packers and appeared in 48 games from 1953 to 1956. The Packers ranked in the NFL's lower tier while Zatkoff was with them, finishing 2–9–1 in 1953, 4–8 in 1954, 6–6 in 1955, and 4–8 in 1956. Despite the Packers' woes, Zatkoff earned a reputation as one of the best linebackers in the NFL in the mid-1950 and was selected as an All-Pro player by in 1954 (UP first team, AP second team), 1955 (AP and TSN first team), 1956 (NEA second team).
In April 1957, the Packers traded Zatkoff and Bobby Garrett to the Cleveland Browns in exchange for six players, including Babe Parilli. Zatkoff announced that, for family and business reasons, he would retire rather than play for the Browns. The Browns tried to trade Zatkoff to the Los Angeles Rams, but Zatkoff refused to join the Rams, and the deal was called off. In September 1957, the Browns finally traded Zatkoff to the Detroit Lions, the team Zatkoff preferred, in exchange for Lew Carpenter, the Lions' leading rusher in 1954 and 1955, and a future draft pick.
In March 1959, Zatkoff announced that he was retiring from football to focus on business.
In 1959, Zatkoff formed a company known as Zatkoff Seals & Packings, a supplier to manufacturing companies in the Detroit and Toledo areas. The company grew to eight locations in three states and became "the largest independent distributor of seals in North America." Other companies include Zatkoff Properties, Ltd., and the Roger Zatkoff Company.
Roger Zatkoff Award
Since 1991, the University of Michigan has presented the Roger Zatkoff Award to the Michigan Wolverines football team's best linebacker at the end of each season. The past winners are listed below.
|1991||Erick Anderson||2000||Victor Hobson||2009||Stevie Brown|
|1992||Steve Morrison||2001||Larry Foote||2010||Jonas Mouton|
|1993||Gannon Dudlar||2002||Victor Hobson||2011||Kenny Demens|
|1994||Steve Morrison||2003||Lawrence Reid||2012||Jake Ryan|
|1995||Jarrett Irons||2004||Roy Manning||2013||Jake Ryan|
|1996||Jarrett Irons||2005||David Harris||2014||Jake Ryan|
|1997||Sam Sword||2006||David Harris||2015||Desmond Morgan|
|1998||Sam Sword||2007||Chris Graham|
|1999||Ian Gold||2008||Obi Ezeh|
- "Roger Zatkoff profile". pro-football-reference.com.
- Lyall Smith (March 25, 1959). "Zatkoff Quits the Lions to Tackle Customers". Detroit Free Press. p. 29 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Michigan Football Roster Database". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
- "1950 Football Team". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library.
- "1951 Football Team". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library.
- "Coaches Select All-Big Ten Team". The Ludington Daily News. November 26, 1951.
- "1952 Football Team". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library.
- "3 Badgers on AP All Big Ten Team". The Capital Times, Madison, Wisconsin. November 24, 1952. p. 19.
- Ed Sainsbury (November 26, 1952). "Michigan, Badgers Each Land Trio On All-Big Ten Squad". Nevada State Journal. p. 11.
- "Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library.
- "Brown-Packer Deal Involves Bobby Garrett". The Record Argus (PA). April 19, 1957. p. 10 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Paul Brown After Zatkoff's Name On Cleveland Contract". Marysville (OH) Journal-Tribune. May 10, 1957. p. 7 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Zatkoff Tells Browns He's Not Playing". The Sandusky (OH) Register. June 5, 1957. p. 20 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Zatkoff Balks; Rams, Browns Call Off Deal". Detroit Free Press. September 4, 1957. p. 37 – via Newspapers.com.
- George Puscas (September 6, 1957). "Squeeze Play Gets Zatkoff 'Home' To Lions". Detroit Free Press. p. 41 – via Newspapers.com.
- "1957 Detroit Lions". pro-football-reference.com.
- "About Zatkoff". Zatkoff Seals & Packings. Retrieved March 15, 2016.
- "Michigan Football Roger Zatkoff Award". MGoBlue.com. University of Michigan. Retrieved March 25, 2015.