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Joe Ehrmann
Date of birth: March 29, 1949 (1949-03-29) (age 61)
Place of birth: Buffalo, New York, United States
Career information
Position(s): Defensive Tackle
College: Syracuse
NFL Draft: 1973 / Round: 1 / Pick 10
 As player:
Baltimore Colts
Detroit Lions
Chicago Blitz (USFL)
Arizona Wranglers (USFL)
Orlando Renegades (USFL)
Career highlights and awards
Pro Bowls: 1
Playing stats at

Joe Ehrmann (born March 29, 1949) is a former NFL defensive lineman, originally drafted as the 10th pick in the first round of the 1973 NFL Draft out of Syracuse University to the Baltimore Colts. Ehrmann played with Baltimore for eight years, and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1978. He finished his NFL career with the Detroit Lions as part of their vaunted defensive line in the early 1980s. He was a National Football League defensive tackle from 1973 through 1982. He then played in the USFL for the Chicago Blitz, Arizona Wranglers and Orlando Renegades.

Service Off the Field

In the same year Ehrmann played in the Pro Bowl, he watched his brother Billy lose his fight with cancer. This experience caused Ehrmann to rethink and reorder his priorities in life. Ehrmann spearheaded the construction of a Ronald McDonald House in Baltimore in memory of Billy. In the off-season, Ehrmann attended classes at Dallas Theological Seminary and, following his football career, he graduated from Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, specializing in urban ministry. He was ordained in 1985.

In the years since then, Joe and his wife Paula created Building Men and Women for Others, an organization that addesses many societal challenges including violence, child advocacy, and much more. They also co-founded "The Door," a community center in inner-city Baltimore. He has also served as a pastor of the 4,000-member Grace Fellowship Church in Baltimore.[1]

Season of Life

Prompted by an article about the demolition of the Colt's legendary Memorial Stadium (Baltimore), author Jeffrey Marx (who first met and was inspired by Ehrmann as a ball boy for the Baltimore Colts) reconnected with Ehrmann and became fascinated both with his ministry and his work as a volunteer Defensive Coordinator coach for the football team at Gilman School, an all-boys school in Baltimore, where he and Head Coach Biff Poggi continue to teach/coach football with a 'building men for others' strategy.

In 2004, Marx's book, Season of Life was published, featuring the Gilman Football team and the life lessons Coaches Poggi and Ehrmann teach. The book became a New York Times best-seller and winner of the Pulitzer Prize. He also supports the Choose Civility movement, sponsored by the Howard County Maryland Library, by attending seminars as a celebrity guest.


  1. ^ "Joe Ehrmann to speak at FUMA". Fork Union Military Academy. Retrieved 2008-10-27. 

The Season of life written by Jeffrey Marx is more than just a book about a football team, it connects to the reader on a much deeper level. This book is meant to show young men that it is okay to show emotion and that masculinity is not purely driven by power and sexual endeavors. it shows how Joe and Biff go about teaching the game of life more than football. it is widely eye opening to any young man who has not been able to connect with others on a emotional level. it also focuses on the relationships that young boys have with there fathers. The author alludes to the fact that many boys do not connect with their fathers at a young age and that this trend continues to persist as they grow older. The authors own struggles with his paternal relationship highlighted this fact. However, the book shows young men that they should not be afraid to display signs of emotion to those that they love, and that creating this bond will help them become better men.



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