One of the premier defensive ends in professional football for nearly two decades, 260-pound Lyle Alzado played 16 years (as defensive end and tackle) with three National Football League (NFL) American Conference teams--Denver Broncos (1971), Cleveland Browns (79) and Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders (82).
Named All-Pro in 1977, 1978 and 1980, Alzado won the Whizzer White Award as NFL Players’ Association Man of the Year in 1977 (voted by the NFL players), and NFLPA Defensive Lineman of the Year the same season. He played in numerous Pro Bowl games. In 1983, he sparked the L.A. Raiders to a Super Bowl championship.
Alzado's speciality was “sacks” (tackling the quarterback behind the line of scrimage). During his pro career, he was not only good, but durable. Sidelined only occasionally in a sport in which business practice often results in disabling injuries, Alzado played in 185 regular season games, menacing opponents for more than thirteen games each season.
The Yankton College (South Dakota) star was selected in the 4th round of the 1971 NFL draft by the Denver Broncos. A small college All-America and recipient of the Lombardi Trophy, Alzado was a two-time All Tri-State Conference selection and MVP in the Copper Bowl.
Lyle was voted Comeback Player of the Year in 1982 (his first season with the Raiders) by Pro Football Weekly. He died from a brain tumor in 1992 at the age of 43.