Ron Fellows (American football)

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Ron Fellows
No. 27, 21
Position: Cornerback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1957-11-07) November 7, 1957 (age 59)
Place of birth: South Bend, Indiana
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 178 lb (81 kg)
Career information
High school: South Bend (IN) Washington
College: Missouri
NFL Draft: 1981 / Round: 7 / Pick: 173
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played: 112
Interceptions: 19
Fumble recoveries: 9
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Ronald Lee Fellows (born November 7, 1957 in South Bend, Indiana) is a former American football cornerback in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys and Los Angeles Raiders. He played college football at the University of Missouri.

Early years[edit]

Fellows attended Washington High School, where he lettered in football, track and basketball. In football, he was a two-way player, as a running back and safety. He helped his team win the Northern Indiana Conference chamionship in 1975 and 1976. As a senior, he received South Bend Tribune Offensive Player of the Year and All-State offensive/defensive back honors.

He was named All-Conference in track and basketball. In 1977, he won the IHSAA 120 yards high hurdles state championship.

In 2014, he was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame.[1]

College career[edit]

Fellows moved on to Butler Community College, where he played as a cornerback for two seasons.[2] He also ran the hurdles.

He transferred to the University of Missouri after his sophomore season. Midway through the 1979 season, he was converted into a wide receiver, posting 4 receptions for 44 yards and no touchdowns. As a senior, he led the Big Eight Conference in receiving with 587 yards on 33 receptions, while also catching 4 touchdowns.[3]

Professional career[edit]

Dallas Cowboys[edit]

Fellows was selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the seventh round (173rd overall) of the 1981 NFL draft, with the intention of playing him at cornerback. By the eleventh game of his rookie season, he was being used on the nickel defense.

The next year he played right corner on obvious passing downs, with starter Dennis Thurman being moved to safety. He also led the team in punt and kickoff returns.

In 1983, he played nickel cornerback over former first-round draft choice Rod Hill, while posting 5 interceptions (second on the team). Against the New Orleans Saints he returned a blocked field goal for a game winning 62-yard touchdown, the first such return by a Cowboy in 19 years. Against the Minnesota Vikings he returned an interception for a 58-yard touchdown. He also tied a team record with 43 kickoff returns.

Fellows was part of an opportunistic Cowboys secondary that earned the nickname "Thurman's Thieves", because of the amount of plays and turnovers they generated. In 1985, he became the starter at right cornerback opposite of Everson Walls.

In 1984, after Thurman made the permanent switch to safety, he became the starter at right cornerback opposite Everson Walls, and posted 3 interceptions.

The next year he struggled with a sprained knee he suffered in the first quarter of the season opener against the Washington Redskins, that caused him to miss 3 games and 2 starts, eventually requiring offseason surgery. He still managed to make 4 interceptions and 20 passes defensed (second on the team).

In 1986, he finished first on the team with 15 passes defensed and second on the team with 5 interceptions, including a 34-yard return for a touchdown against the St. Louis Cardinals. Against the Chicago Bears, he accounted for 4 turnovers (2 interceptions and 2 fumble recoveries).

On August 2, 1987, after being involved in a contract holdout and with the Cowboys needing help at wide receiver, the team felt they had depth at cornerback after drafting Ron Francis, so he was traded to the Los Angeles Raiders in exchange for Rod Barksdale.[4]

Los Angeles Raiders[edit]

In 1987, Fellows was the team's nickel cornerback, appearing in 12 games with 2 starts. He was waived on August 29, 1988,[5] but was re-signed after Terry McDaniel was lost for the year with a broken leg in the second game of the season. He appeared in 14 games with 10 starts at left cornerback, registering 2 interceptions and 2 fumble recoveries. He was not re-signed after the season.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Indiana Football Hall of Fame bio". Retrieved February 19, 2017. 
  2. ^ "Cowley, Butler Romp To Openning Victories". Retrieved February 19, 2017. 
  3. ^ "Liberty Bowl". Retrieved February 19, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Raiders, Overstocked With Receivers, Trade One for a Cornerback". Retrieved February 19, 2017. 
  5. ^ "Hilger Cut By Raiders". Retrieved February 19, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Martin, Two Others Waived by Raiders". Retrieved February 19, 2017.