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Reggie Roby
Jersey #(s)
4, 1, 7
Born July 30, 1961(1961-07-30)
Waterloo, Iowa
Died February 22, 2005 (aged 43)
Nashville, Tennessee
Career information
Year(s) 19831998
NFL Draft 1983 / Round: 6 / Pick: 167
College Iowa
Professional teams
Career stats
Punts 992
Punting yards 42,951
Punting Avg 43.3
Stats at
Career highlights and awards

Reginald Henry Roby[1] (July 30, 1961 – February 22, 2005) was an American football punter in the National Football League and a three-time Pro Bowler. He was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the sixth round of the 1983 NFL Draft out of the University of Iowa. He also played for the Washington Redskins, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Houston/Tennessee Oilers, and the San Francisco 49ers, retiring in 1999 after 16 seasons. Roby, who was also a standout pitcher on the Waterloo East High School team was drafted by Major League Baseball's Cincinnati Reds. Roby instead chose to attend college. Despite the fact that he had experience at quarterback and possessed a strong leg, University of Iowa head coach Hayden Fry made the 6'-4", 250 pound Roby a punter exclusively.


College career

Before he arrived, the University of Iowa football squad had not had a winning season in 20 years. With Roby, the 1981 team earned its first Rose Bowl invitation in 23 years on the strength of being co-Big Ten champions with Ohio State. Roby set an NCAA season record with a 49.8-yard average. In 1982, he led the nation with a 48.1-yard average. His career average of 45.4 yards ranks among college football's best and is still a school record.

Professional career

As a professional, his 38.7 net average led the league in 1986, and his 45.7 average yards led the NFL in 1991, and he set a Pro Bowl record with 10 punts in the 1985 game. His 58.5-yard single-game average on September 28, 1986 remains a Dolphin team record. At Rich Stadium, Roby punted the ball a team record 77 yards, but the punt was returned 70 yards. He completed the only pass attempt of his career, a 48-yarder to John Booty in 1995. Roby was selected as a punter for the NFL's 1980s All-Decade Team.

Roby finished his 16 NFL seasons with 992 punts for 42,951 yards, with 298 punts in the 20 and 112 touchbacks. His career yards per punt average was 43.3, with a net average of 34.0.

In 1993, Roby's financial difficulties led to him filing for bankruptcy (Miami had cut him after the 1992 season largely because a corollary of this filing would have meant he could have become a free agent and left Miami at any point of the following season), but he rebounded and later became marketing and development director for Backfield in Motion, a non-profit group mixing athletics and academics to help inner city boys.

Reggie Roby helped popularize the now-standard two-step approach, and often wore a watch to gauge his hangtime.


On February 22, 2005, Roby was found at his Nashville, Tennessee home without a pulse by his wife. To date, the cause of death remains unannounced. He left behind six children, Brittany, Bry, Julian, Dominic, Sophia, and Jovita.

In the days after Roby's death, former Miami Dolphins head coach Don Shula praised Reggie Roby: "He was an outstanding punter for us and his booming kicks often helped us win the field position battle."


Reggie's cousin, Courtney Roby, is a wide receiver in the NFL.


External links

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