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Oakland Raiders Need to Stay Away from Champ Bailey It's easy to fall in love with a player whose name is "Champ," especially a Champ whose 16-year career has more than enough accomplishments to land him in Canton. But when that Champ is in his mid-30s, fresh off an injury-plagued season that made him tons of money, it seems as if he's a Champ who just isn't worth taking a chance on. The Denver Broncos said goodbye to cornerback Champ Bailey ...
Oakland Raiders Add Pressure During Free Agency by Not Tagging Houston, Veldheer The Oakland Raiders are less than a week away from two of their best players becoming unrestricted free agents. Defensive end Lamarr Houston and left tackle Jared Veldheer will both be able to start talking with other teams in just a few days, which could lead to their departures from the team. Although the Raiders still have an exclusive window to negotiate with Veldheer and Houston until March ...
Reggie McKenzie Chose This Path. Now It's Time to Deliver I've been a pretty stalwart defender of Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie since he took over as the man in charge of making the football decisions at Raiders headquarters. Over the course of his tenure, however, it's started to feel like those of us who believe in what McKenzie is doing in Oakland are the last, sad survivors of a once robust civilization that has been forgotten ...
Team Report - OAKLAND RAIDERS Raiders poised to land coveted QB - or top prospect
Raiders offer tender to Burnett Dec 8, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith (7) avoids a tackle by Oakland Raiders linebacker Kaelin Burnett (95) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Jets defeated the Raiders 37-27.
Portland Raiders? Oregon NFL fans want it A group of football fans in Oregon want their governor to actively pursue bringing the NFL to the Portland area and have set their sights on the Oakland Raiders. “NFL to Oregon” recently posted a petition to Gov. John Kitzhaber on Change.org, asking the state to at least begin exploring the possibility. “Bringing an NFL team to Oregon would dramatically increase the footprint of this state ...
Oakland Raiders 2014 NFL Mock Draft Tracker What will the Oakland Raiders do in the 2014 NFL draft? Keep track of all the predictions made in our mock drafts leading up to Round 1 on May 8. We said: With more than $65 million in cap space, and positions to fill all over the roster, the Raiders are in desperate need of true playmakers.
Oakland Raiders: Do's and Don'ts in First Round of 2014 NFL Draft Like Oakland, the teams picking in the top four have plenty of needs, so it is especially difficult to predict who will still be available when the Raiders are on the clock.
McShay Mock 3.0 reax: Raiders Sticking with the Oakland-needs-a-playmaker storyline, ESPN NFL Insider draft guru Todd McShay has unveiled his Mock Draft 3.0 and adhered to such thinking when it comes to the Oakland Raiders. McShay has the Raiders selecting Clemson receiver Sammy Watkins at No. 5 overall now, after having Oakland go with Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel in his second mock and selecting Central Florida ...
Raiders Re-Sign Offensive Lineman Khalif Barnes The Oakland Raiders re-signed offensive lineman Khalif Barnes on Friday. The 6-foot-6, 321-pound former University of Washington player has spent five seasons with the Raiders after four with Jacksonville. He has made 46 starts in […]
The man they called "Tooz'' was the No. 1 pick in 1973, going to the Houston Oilers out of the University of Tampa. But that's not what the 6-foot-8, 282-pound defensive end is remembered for. His legacy was that of a brawling, incorrigible miscreant who occasionally played hard but always partied harder. It was inevitable that Matuszak ended up with the Raiders, where he spent the final six years of his career (1976-81), because Oakland by then had become a halfway house for the NFL's unrepentant, rowdier crowd.
Matuszak was born in Oak Creek, Wisconsin in 1950 and was always big for his age, which became an advantage as a defensive lineman in football. When he eventually turned pro, he stood 6 feet 8 inches (2.03 meters) and weighed over 280 pounds (127 kilograms). He attended the University of Tampa where he was the star of their football team. (Incidentally, the football program at the University of Tampa ended after the 1974 season.)
Matuszak, drafted by the Houston Oilers of the NFL, was the first draft pick of 1973. In addition to his contract with the Oilers, he joined the Houston Texans of the World Football League, but never played because of a restraining order that barred him from playing for two teams at the same time. The Oilers, displeased that he tried joining the WFL, traded him to the Kansas City Chiefs where he played until 1975. Then he found himself with the Raiders in 1976. He helped the Raiders win two Super Bowls (XI and XV) before retiring after the 1981 season. He played a total of 123 games in nine seasons of professional football.
His football career was often overshadowed by his even more famous (or infamous) partying and seemingly endless use of drugs. In his autobiography, he stated that he took many painkillers as well as other narcotics while playing professional football. Because of this, an article written for Sports Illustrated's website in January 2005 named him one of the top five all-time "bad boys" of the NFL.
During his playing career, Matuszak is said to have enjoyed what he considered the "breakfast of champions,'' a vodka and valium combination that can not be found on any Wheaties box. Before the Raiders played the Eagles in Super Bowl XV, Matuszak was quoted saying he was going to see to it that none of his teammates strayed too far from the team hotel, thereby risking a curfew violation.
"I'm going to see that there's no funny business,'' he said. "I've had enough parties for 20 people's lifetimes. I've grown up. I'll keep our young fellows out of trouble. If any players want to stray, they gotta go through Ol' Tooz.''
The only problem? The next night Matuszak was caught partying until at least 3 a.m. and was slapped with a $1,000 fine for his indiscretion.
After his playing days ended in 1981, Matuszak went on to a fairly successful career in movies, generally playing a version of himself.
Matuszak became a fairly successful actor in the 1980s, making appearances in movies and on television, often portraying football players and gentle giants. His first major role was in the 1979 movie North Dallas Forty as a football player. He appeared in the movies Caveman (1981) and The Ice Pirates (1984), but is frequently remembered as Sloth in The Goonies (1985). He had numerous guest appearances in popular TV shows such as M*A*S*H, The Dukes of Hazzard, Hunter, The A-Team, and Miami Vice.
His autobiography, Cruisin' with the Tooz, written with Steve Delsohn was published in 1987. John Matuszak died of heart failure in Hollywood, California at age 38. His early death has been blamed on his extreme lifestyle, including the possible use of anabolic steroids.
He died in 1989, of heart failure, at age 38.