Ron Jaworski

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Ron Jaworski
refer to caption
Jaworski in 2010
No. 16, 7, 17
Position:Quarterback
Personal information
Born: (1951-03-23) March 23, 1951 (age 67)
Lackawanna, New York
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:196 lb (89 kg)
Career information
High school:Lackawanna (NY)
College:Youngstown State
NFL Draft:1973 / Round: 2 / Pick: 37
Career history
As player:
As administrator:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
TDINT:179–164
Yards:28,190
Passer rating:72.8
Player stats at NFL.com

Ronald Vincent Jaworski (born March 23, 1951) is a former American football quarterback. He was also an NFL analyst on ESPN. He is the CEO of Ron Jaworski Golf Management, Inc., based out of Blackwood, New Jersey, and manages golf courses in southern New Jersey, northeast Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. He also owns part interest in the Philadelphia Soul of the Arena Football League, where he also serves as Chairman of the Executive Committee for the league. Jaworski was nicknamed "Jaws" by Philadelphia 76ers player Doug Collins prior to Super Bowl XV.

Early years[edit]

Jaworski was born and raised in Lackawanna, New York. A three-sport star in high school, he turned down a professional baseball offer from the St. Louis Cardinals to attend college at Youngstown State University. Nicknamed "Rifle Ron", and the "Polish Rifle", he was able to showcase his skills as a quarterback for the pass-oriented offense of the Penguins, earning a selection in the Senior Bowl.[1]

Professional career[edit]

Los Angeles Rams[edit]

Drafted in the second round of the 1973 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams, Jaworski was originally an overlooked third-string quarterback. Due to injuries to John Hadl and James Harris, Jaworski saw considerable playing time in 1975, leading the Rams to a playoff win.[2] In 1976, he lost the starting quarterback job to Pat Haden.

Philadelphia Eagles[edit]

In the spring of 1977, Jaworski was traded by the Rams to the Philadelphia Eagles for former All-Pro tight end Charle Young; the trade was illegal under NFL by-laws since both Jaworski and Young had completed their contracts, but no one raised any objection to the deal so it was permitted to stand. With a young Dick Vermeil as his coach, he was given the opportunity to start for the up-and-coming Eagles. Things were not easy for the young quarterback, but Vermeil stood by his developing signal caller, and soon the Eagles became a playoff team. The Eagles made the playoffs in 1978 and 1979, but lost in the early rounds.

Slowly, Vermeil built the Eagles into a Super Bowl team, and Jaworski was its leader on offense. In 1980, the Eagles started out 11–1 in the regular season, including defeating the eventual Super Bowl champions Oakland Raiders, and won the NFC Eastern Division for the first time. Jaworski had a stellar season and was named the UPI "NFL Player of the Year". Also in that same year, he received the Bert Bell Award, The Maxwell Football Club's Professional Player of the Year award, and the Professional Athlete of the Year award sponsored by Dunlop Rubber.[citation needed] Jaworski led the Eagles past the Minnesota Vikings in the Divisional Round of the playoffs (31–16), and then defeated the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Championship Game (20–7) to reach the franchise's first Super Bowl. Tom Landry's Cowboys had previously dominated the Eagles, a divisional rival, since the formation of the National Football Conference in 1970. The Eagles lost Super Bowl XV to the Oakland Raiders, 27–10.

Following a shaky performance in the 1985 season-opener, Jaworski was benched and replaced by rookie Randall Cunningham in Week 2; Jaworski subsequently regained the starter's role and performed well, earning NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors in Week 7. He also tied an NFL record with a 99-yard overtime touchdown pass to Mike Quick in 1985 against the Atlanta Falcons. After Jaworski suffered another injury the next season, new Eagles coach Buddy Ryan made Randall Cunningham his starting quarterback for the rest of the season. The team did not re-sign Jaworski at the end of the season and he was subsequently released. He finished with 69 wins, 67 losses and one tie as the Eagles starting quarterback.[3]

Miami Dolphins[edit]

In the spring of 1987, he signed with the Miami Dolphins as a backup to quarterback Dan Marino. Jaworski never took the field in 1987, and he saw limited action in 1988.

Kansas City Chiefs[edit]

He moved on to the Kansas City Chiefs in 1989, starting a pair of games in a quarterback rotation that included Steve DeBerg and Steve Pelluer.[4] At one point, he and center Mike Webster formed the second oldest starting QB–center combo in NFL history.[5] He retired at the end of the season.

Career statistics[edit]

Jaworski finished his 17-season career with 2,187 completions on 4,117 attempts for 28,190 yards, 179 touchdowns, and 164 interceptions. He rushed for 859 yards and 16 touchdowns. He previously held the record for most consecutive starts by a quarterback with 116,[6] having since been surpassed by Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Philip Rivers and Joe Flacco. His 170 regular season touchdowns with the Philadelphia Eagles were the most in franchise history until he was surpassed by Donovan McNabb on September 21, 2008, 22 years after Jaworski left Philadelphia.

Awards[edit]

In 1979, he and Joe Pisarcik received medals from Pope John Paul II on the occasion of his visit to Philadelphia. Like the Pope, both men are of Polish ancestry, with Jaworski being nicknamed "The Polish Rifle."

He was voted by his teammates as the Ed Block Courage Award recipient in 1985 for the Philadelphia Eagles.

While still playing for the Eagles in 1986, Jaworski was inducted into the YSU Sports Hall of Fame at his collegiate alma mater, Youngstown State University.[7] Along with former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Cliff Stoudt (inducted 1987 and Jaworski's successor on the football team, though playing for the Cardinals at this point) and recently retired St. Louis Rams kicker Jeff Wilkins (inducted in 2003), Jaworski is one of only three former YSU football players to be inducted while still active in the NFL.

In 1991, Jaworski was inducted into the National Polish-American Hall of Fame.

In 1992, Jaworski was inducted into the Philadelphia Eagles Honor Roll, and in 1994 he was nominated for admission to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio (his first year of eligibility for this as he had retired five years earlier, in 1989).

In 1997, he received the Pinnacle Award from the South Jersey Chamber of Commerce for his outstanding volunteer work and longtime service to the South Jersey Chamber as well as the business community.

In 1997, Jaworski received the Bert Bell Man of the Year from the Eagles Fly for Leukemia, which is given to the person who had contributed significantly to the NFL.

In 1998, The United Way honored Ron with their Volunteer Leadership Award, which is the highest award given by the United Way.

In 2007, the Father's Day Council of the Greater Philadelphia chapter of the American Diabetes Association selected Ron to receive one of their "Father of the Year" awards.

Post-NFL career[edit]

Jaworski displaying his NFC Championship ring in 2008

Business[edit]

Jaworski is a part owner and team president of the Philadelphia Soul of the Arena Football League. He also serves as Chairman of the Executive Committee for the AFL. He is also among the primary investors and advisors for the Elite Football League of India. Other prominent American backers include former Chicago Bears head coach Mike Ditka, former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Michael Irvin, and NFL linebacker Brandon Chillar.[8][9] Jaworski is the owner/operator of Valleybrook Country Club in Blackwood, New Jersey and Running Deer Golf Club in Pittsgrove, New Jersey. In addition, Ron Jaworski Golf Management manages RiverWinds Golf & Tennis Club, West Deptford, New Jersey, and Blue Heron Pines Country Club in Egg Harbor City, New Jersey.

Broadcasting[edit]

Jaworski's first on air broadcast experience came in 1976 as the sports director on the Bob Shannon morning show in Orange County, California while Ron was still an NFL player with the Rams. He also worked as a sports commentator for WIP (Ron Jaworski Show, 1988), co-host Celebrity Sports Talk and Eagles wrap-around shows, 1990, and the Eagles post-game show WYSP, 1992.[10] He was part of ESPN's broadcasting team for the second half of its opening-night Monday Night Football doubleheader on September 11, 2006, with Brad Nessler and Dick Vermeil. Jaworski was also the color commentator for Tampa Bay Buccaneers preseason games on WFLA-TV from 2003 to 2006. In 2007, he replaced Joe Theismann as color commentator for ESPN's Monday Night Football broadcasts, where he and Mike Tirico teamed with Tony Kornheiser (2007–2008) and Jon Gruden (20092011). On February 15, 2012 ESPN announced that the Monday Night Football broadcast team would be reduced to just Gruden and Tirico in the booth. Jaworski signed a five-year contract extension with ESPN and would remain an NFL analyst on other programs.[11] In late April 2017, ESPN announced they would be laying off various on-air personalities from their channel. On May 2, 2017, Ed Werder, who was released a few days earlier from ESPN, even breaking the news of his release himself, hinted that Jaworski was also being let go after years with the network. "How is ESPN going to cover the NFL without all of the people who just lost their jobs? What happens without Merril Hoge and Ron Jaworski to NFL Matchup? Are we really about to see a time when ESPN can no longer afford to cover its most valuable property in the way that historically it has?" Werder said. Jaworski has yet to make a statement on if Werder's comments are true or not.[12]

Jaworski is also a published author. In 2010 his first book, The Games That Changed the Game, was published. The book highlights seven games in NFL history which greatly changed the strategies and tactics used in NFL football.

Personal life[edit]

Jaworski lives with his wife Liz in Voorhees Township, New Jersey.[13][14] They have three children.

References[edit]

Notes

  1. ^ "Ron Jaworski homepage". RonJaworski.com. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  2. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals at Los Angeles Rams – December 27th, 1975". Pro-Football-Reference.com. 1975-12-27. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  3. ^ "Ron Jaworski NFL & AFL Football Statistics". Pro-Football-Reference.com. 2011-09-22. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  4. ^ "1989 Kansas City Chiefs Statistics & Players". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  5. ^ Pierson, Don (1989-10-01). "Vikings' Troubles An Inside Story". Chicago Tribune.
  6. ^ "Iron Man". Profootballhof.com. November 29, 2004. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  7. ^ YSUsports.com- Hall of Fame Inductees By Class Archived November 3, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ "Topic Galleries". chicagotribune.com. 2011-10-19. Retrieved 2011-11-08.[permanent dead link]
  9. ^ "American football coming to India? | Sport". Dawn.Com. AP. 2011-08-06. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  10. ^ "Ron Jaworski." Marquis Who's Who TM. Marquis Who's Who, 2007. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Michigan: Gale, 2009. http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/BioRC. Document Number: K2017047902. Fee. Accessed 2009-12-21 via Fairfax County Public Library.
  11. ^ "Ron Jaworski leaving Monday Night Football". Northeast Sports Network website. 2012-02-15. Retrieved 2012-02-16.
  12. ^ http://thebiglead.com/2017/05/01/are-ron-jaworski-and-merril-hoge-also-out-at-espn-ed-werder-says-so/
  13. ^ Garber, Greg. "WITH ADRENALINE GONE, THROWING WILL BE A PAIN", Hartford Courant, November 25, 1998. Accessed March 17, 2011. "'I broke every finger on my passing hand at least once – some of them twice and three times,' Jaworski said Tuesday night from his Voorhees, N.J., home. 'Let me tell you, it's awful hard to throw a football without all your fingers. Any other position out there, it doesn't matter. But for a quarterback, a broken finger is a killer.'"
  14. ^ Ron Jaworski speaker profile, Leading Authorities. Accessed March 17, 2011. "A proud family man, Ron Jaworski currently resides in Voorhees, New Jersey with his wife, Liz."

Bibliography

  • "Ron(ald) (Vincent) Jaworski." Almanac of Famous People, 9th ed. Thomson Gale, 2007. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale, 2009. http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/BioRC. Document Number: K1601045895. Fee. Accessed 2009-12-21 via Fairfax County Public Library.
  • Biography Index. A cumulative index to biographical material in books and magazines. Volume 12: September, 1979-August, 1982. New York: H. W. Wilson Co., 1983.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Joe Ferguson
(107)
Consecutive starts by a quarterback in the NFL
(116)

1984–1999
Succeeded by
Brett Favre
(297)