Ron Kostelnik

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Ron Kostelnik
No. 77, 65
Position:Defensive tackle
Personal information
Born:(1940-01-14)January 14, 1940
Colver, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died:January 29, 1993(1993-01-29) (aged 53)
Scott County, Kentucky
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:260 lb (118 kg)
Career information
High school:Central Cambria (PA)
NFL Draft:1961 / Round: 2 / Pick: 26
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at

Ronald Michael Kostelnik (January 14, 1940 - January 29, 1993) was an American football player, a defensive tackle in the National Football League for eight seasons with the Green Bay Packers and one with the Baltimore Colts.[1]

Early years[edit]

Born in Colver, Pennsylvania, Kostelnik was the son of a Polish American miner.[2] He graduated from Central Cambria High School in 1957 and played college football at the University of Cincinnati.

Playing career[edit]

Kostelnik was selected in the second round of the 1961 NFL draft, 26th overall, by the Packers. For his first several seasons, he backed up veteran Dave Hanner, then became a starter in 1964.[3] Alongside Willie Davis, Henry Jordan, and Lionel Aldridge, Kostelnik was the unheralded member of the Green Bay defensive line. Teammate Jerry Kramer said of him: "There aren't statistics for steady dependable guys who plug up the middle and allow other guys to excel. But that's what Ron did."[1]

In his eight seasons in Green Bay, the Packers won five NFL championships and the first two Super Bowls. He was traded in August 1969 to the Baltimore Colts,[4][5] then retired after the season.

After football[edit]

With a bachelor's and master's degree in education from Cincinnati, Kostelnik planned to be a school administrator. He began working for Mainline Industrial Distributors Inc. of Appleton in sales in the off-season in 1965, became president in 1970,[6][7] and later was its chief executive officer.[1][8]


While returning to Wisconsin from a Florida vacation with his wife Peggy in 1993, Kostelnik suffered a fatal heart attack and lost control of his car on Interstate 75 in Scott County, Kentucky.[9][10][11] He was age 53 and was survived by his wife, three daughters, and a son.[11]


  1. ^ a b c Hendricks, Martin (November 20, 2012). "Kostelnik got the job done without a fuss". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
  2. ^ Irwin, Mrs. James B. (August 11, 1968). "Sports: minorities' friend". Milwaukee Journal. p. 2, part 4.
  3. ^ "Ron Kostelnik finds home as defensive Pacer tackle". Reading Eagle. Pennsylvania. Associated Press. October 7, 1965. p. 26.
  4. ^ Lea, Bud (August 20, 1969). "Colts get Kostelnik". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 2.
  5. ^ Lea, Bud (November 6, 1969). "Ron restless as a reserve". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 2.
  6. ^ Stafford, Roger A. (March 19, 1973). "Kostelnik quarterback now". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 9, part 2.
  7. ^ Kenney, Ray (September 20, 1984). "From lineman to Mainline". Milwaukee Journal. p. 12, part 3.
  8. ^ Savage, Mark (June 29, 1991). "New position". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1D.
  9. ^ "Ron Kostelnik, tackle For Packers, dies at 53". New York Times. Associated Press. February 1, 1993. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
  10. ^ "Ex-Packer Kostelnik dies at 53". Milwaukee Sentinel. Associated Press. January 30, 1993. p. 1B.
  11. ^ a b "Ex-Packer Kostelnik, 53, killed in car crash". Milwaukee Journal. Associated Press. January 30, 1993. p. A9.

External links[edit]