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Richard Dent
Defensive end
Jersey #(s)
95, 96
Born December 13, 1960 (1960-12-13) (age 49)
Atlanta, Georgia
Career information
Year(s) 19831997
NFL Draft 1983 / Round: 8 / Pick: 203
College Tennessee State
Professional teams
Career stats
Sacks 137.5
Interceptions 8
Touchdowns 1
Stats at
Career highlights and awards

Richard Lamar Dent (born December 13, 1960 in Atlanta, Georgia) is a former American football defensive end who played primarily for the Chicago Bears of the National Football League. He was the MVP of Super Bowl XX.


Pro Football career


Chicago Bears

After playing 4 years at Tennessee State University, Dent was drafted in the eighth round by the Bears, with 203rd overall pick in the 1983 NFL Draft. At 6'5, 265 lb (120 kg)., Dent was a great pass rusher who beat offensive tackles with his speed. He was part of the core of great players who made the Bears' defenses of the 1980s legendary. Between 1984 and 1985, Dent recorded 34.5 sacks.

1985 season

In the 1985 season, Dent and the Bears had one of the most spectacular seasons in NFL history, finishing the season with a 15-1 record and shutting out both their opponents in the playoffs. Dent was a major factor in Chicago's success, leading the NFL with 17 sacks, while recovering 2 fumbles and intercepting 2 passes (1 of which was returned for a touchdown). In the 1985 playoffs, Dent was phenomenal, performing in what was quite possibly the most impressive defensive post-season performance in history. In the divisional playoff game in which the Bears hosted the New York Giants, Dent had one of the most dominant playoff performances in history. In the game, he recorded 7 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles. In the NFC Championship Game, Dent, along with teammate Wilber Marshall, provided one of the most memorable playoff moments in history. It was late in the 4th quarter and it had just started to snow. Quarterback Dieter Brock dropped back to pass, but Dent got there and sacked him, knocking the ball loose. Marshall picked up the loose ball and returned it for a touchdown, a moment that was said to be a perfect end to the Bears' season (at home) and others say that the snow was "Papa Bear" George Halas giving his thumbs-up to the team. And of course, when The Bears went on to crush the New England Patriots 46-10 in Super Bowl XX, Dent was selected the game's MVP, as he shared 2 sacks, forced 2 fumbles, and blocked a pass. Dent made a mere $90,000 in base salary for his efforts in 1985.[1] ($173,000 in 2007 dollars)[2] He was a featured soloist of the "Shuffling Crew" in the video The Super Bowl Shuffle in 1985.

After Chicago

Dent would remain with the team until the end of the 1993 season, after the Bears had won just one playoff game since their loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the 1988 NFC Championship Game, and head coach Mike Ditka had been replaced by Dave Wannstedt.

Dent won a Super Bowl ring after spending the 1994 season under contract with the 49ers, though he spent almost the whole year injured. Injuries would continue to hamper Dent after his return to Chicago in 1995. Dent would spend 1996 and 1997 with the Indianapolis Colts and Philadelphia Eagles respectively, playing the so-called designated pass rusher for them.

Dent retired after the 1997 season. His lifetime statistics included 137.5 sacks and 8 interceptions; he returned these picks for 89 yards and one touchdown. He also recovered 13 fumbles, returning them for 56 yards and one touchdown. 124.5 of his sacks came during his first stint with the Bears, from 1983 to 1993. At the time of his retirement, his 137.5 sacks ranked him third in NFL history behind Reggie White and Bruce Smith

Dent has been nominated several times for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but to this day he has not been enshrined. However, Dent remains a strong candidate for future enshrinement. In 2005-2008, he was among the top 15 finalists in the selection process. Regardless, Dent was inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame on February 15, 2008.

Preceded by
Joe Montana
NFL Super Bowl MVPs
Super Bowl XX, 1986
Succeeded by
Phil Simms



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