Billy Ray Smith was a hell of a football player – All-America in Arkansas and both a Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champion in the NFL.
The stats are impressive – 23 NFL seasons, 97 career sacks, 16 fumble recoveries, 15 interceptions.
If that sounds a bit much for a player, it is. There were two Billy Ray Smiths, father and son, and both have a spot on the University of Arkansas NFL team. The stat line above is a combination of their careers.
Billy Ray Smith Sr. was a defensive tackle who played 13 NFL seasons and won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Colts. He went to two Pro Bowls and amassed 70 career sacks, 16 fumble recoveries and one interception.
Billy Ray Smith Jr. was a two-time Arkansas All-America linebacker who played 10 NFL seasons with the San Diego Chargers. He accumulated 27 sacks, 15 interceptions and 14 fumble recoveries. He is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame and was also elected to the San Diego 50th Anniversary team.
The Smiths are inducted into the Razorbacks’ all-time NFL team by three Hall of Famers — Lance Alworth, Dan Hampton and Steve Atwater. But this team’s strength may lie on the sidelines.
Arkansas has produced an NFL Hall of Famer owner (Jerry Jones) and two Super Bowl-winning coaches, Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer. Jimmy Johnson is inducted into both the Pro Football and College Football Halls of Fame and is joined by Barry Switzer in the College Football Hall of Fame. Arkansas also produced Red Hickey, who introduced the shotgun formation to the NFL back in 1960.
Here’s the University of Arkansas’ all-time NFL team:
QB—Joe Ferguson, 1977 NFL Passing Champion
HB—Darren McFadden, 10 seasons, 5,421 rushing yards, 33 touchdowns
FB—Peyton Hillis, 7 relays, 2,832 rushing yards, 134 catches
WR—Lance Alworth, hall of fame
WR—Jim Benton, 1940s NFL decade team
*-TE – hunter Heinrich, 6 seasons, 246 catches, 30 TDs
*-T—Jason Peters, 9 Pro Bowls, 19 seasons, 218 starts
T—Glen Ray Hines, 2 Pro Bowls, 8 seasons, 106 starts
G—RC Thielemann, 3 Pro Bowls, 12 seasons, 148 starts
G—Shawn Andrews, 2 Pro Bowls, 6 seasons, 57 starts
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*-C—Frank Ragnow, Pro Bowl, 5 seasons, 49 starts
EN—Wayne Martin, Pro Bowl, 13 seasons, 83 sacks
EN—Raylee Johnson, 11 seasons, 47 sacks
DT—Dan Hamptonhall of fame
DT—Billy Ray Smith Sr., 2 Pro Bowls, 13 seasons, 70 sacks
LB—Billy Ray Smith Jr., 10 relays, 15 interceptions, 27 sacks
LB—Dennis “Dirt” Winston, 10 squadrons, 13 interceptions
*-LB—Dre Greenlaw, 3 seasons, 24 starts, 199 duels
CB—Chris Houston, 7 seasons, 13 interceptions
CB—Kenny Wright, 9 seasons, 13 interceptions
S—Steve Atwater, hall of fame
S—Ken HamlinPro Bowl, 8 seasons, 15 interceptions
K—Pat Summerall, 10 seasons, 563 points, 100 field goals
P—Steve Cox6 seasons, 42.0 yard average
KR—Gary Anderson, Pro Bowl, 7 seasons, 1,919 return yards, TD
ST—Ravin Caldwell, 7 seasons, 2 Super Bowl rings
LS—Bret Goode, 11 Seasons, Super Bowl Ring