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Russ Grimm

Grimm (left) with Alan Faneca
No. 68     
Personal information
Date of birth: May 2, 1959 (1959-05-02) (age 50)
Place of birth: Scottdale, Pennsylvania
Career information
College: Pittsburgh
NFL Draft: 1981 / Round: 3 / Pick: 69
Debuted in 1981 for the Washington Redskins
Last played in 1991 for the Washington Redskins
Made coaching debut in 1992 for the Washington Redskins
Career history
 As player:
 As coach:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 1991
Games played     140
Games Started     114
Fumble recoveries     7
Stats at
Pro Football Hall of Fame

Russell Scott Grimm (born May 2, 1959 in Scottdale, Pennsylvania) is a former American football guard for the Washington Redskins of the National Football League. As a collegian, he was an All-American center at the University of Pittsburgh. As a professional, Grimm had multi-selections to both the All-Pro and Pro Bowl teams, and will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2010. Grimm played 11 seasons for the Redskins and was a first team selection to the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team. He is currently the assistant head coach and offensive line coach for the Arizona Cardinals.

Grimm is featured in the video game All-Pro Football 2K8. [1]


NFL Playing Career

He was drafted in the third round by the Redskins in the 1981 NFL Draft. Along with Jeff Bostic, Mark May, George Starke and Joe Jacoby, Russ Grimm was a founding member of the Redskins' renowned "Hogs" offensive line of the 1980s and early 1990s (deemed one of the best front fives of NFL history), which was a mainstay of the Redskins' glory years during the first Joe Gibbs era.

During his 11 seasons as the Redskins' starting guard, Russ Grimm helped lead his team to 4 Super Bowl appearances and 3 Super Bowl victories (Super Bowl XVII in 1983, Super Bowl XXII in 1988, and Super Bowl XXVI in 1992). Along the way, Grimm was selected to 4 consecutive Pro Bowl appearances (1983 through 1986). He was named an All-Pro in each of those years as well.

According to Mark May, a teammate both at Pittsburgh and on the Redskins, no one lived up to the "Hog" persona more than Grimm: "He was a blue collar stiff and proud of it." In his 2005 memoir, May recalled a Christmas party at his house in 1982: "I iced down a keg of beer and stationed it on the landing between the first floor and basement. Russ turned the landing into his headquarters for the evening. He grabbed a chair and a Hog shot glass (a 60-ounce pitcher) and parked his butt on the landing next to the keg. Except for an occasional trip to the bathroom, we didn't see Russ on the first level all night..."[2]

Grimm was a semifinalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004, and a finalist in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2010[3].

NFL Coaching Career

After hanging up his player's cleats, Grimm returned to the Redskins as a tight end coach (from 1992 through 1996, and offensive line coach from 1997 through 2000, during which he was instrumental in the development of tackles Chris Samuels and Jon Jansen. After his coaching stint with the Redskins, Grimm joined the Pittsburgh Steelers as offensive line coach in September 2000. In 2004 he was promoted to Assistant Head Coach/Offensive Line.

In 2004, after the Chicago Bears fired Dick Jauron, Bears management considered Grimm as a top candidate for the job. The job eventually went to then St. Louis Rams defensive coordinator Lovie Smith.

In 2005, Grimm added another Super Bowl ring (totalling 4) to his résumé as part of the Pittsburgh Steelers' coaching staff (Offensive Line Coach).Under Grimm guidance in 2005, the Super Bowl champion Steelers averaged nearly 140 yards rushing per game during the regular season to rank fifth in the NFL while also grinding out 181 rushing yards in their Super Bowl XL victory over the Seattle Seahawks. In 2006 Steelers offensive line helped pave the way for running back Willie Parker to gain 1,494 yards and 13 touchdowns on 337 carries with 4.4 yard avg. and earn his first Pro Bowl selection. Pittsburgh offense finished the 2006 season with the 10th best rushing attack in the NFL, helping to give the Steelers the 7th ranked total offense in the league. Parker finished the season with the second and third top rushing performances of the year in the NFL with 223 rushing yards 32 att., TD against Cleveland Browns and 213 yards with 22 att, 2 TD vs. New Orleans Saints.

On January 5 , 2007, Bill Cowher resigned as head coach of the Steelers. In the press conference that followed, Steeler's President Art Rooney II announced Russ Grimm as one of the candidates for the job. On January 15, 2007, he was named as a finalist for the job along with Ken Whisenhunt and Mike Tomlin. The Steelers would end up hiring Tomlin as their head coach. Shortly thereafter, Grimm was hired by the Arizona Cardinals to serve as their assistant head coach/offensive line coach. In Arizona, he serves under head coach Ken Whisenhunt who Grimm worked with under Bill Cowher in Pittsburgh. In his first season in Arizona, his offensive line allowed only 24 sacks, 6th best in the NFL and the fewest given up by the Cardinals since 1978 with 22. Grimm’s offensive line also paved the way for running back Edgerrin James to rush for 1,222 yards, the fifth best total in team history. The Cardinals offense finished with the 5th best passing attack in the NFL and threw for a team record 32 touchdowns.


Steelers coach candidacy

After the Arizona Cardinals hired Whisenhunt as their new head coach, on January 14, 2007, the finalists for the Steelers position were reduced to Grimm and Mike Tomlin. On January 22, 2007, Mike Prisuta of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported from an undisclosed source within the Pittsburgh Steelers organization that, then-asssistant coach, Grimm would replace Bill Cowher as the team's coach. A day earlier, ESPN and Sports Illustrated stated on their web sites that Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Mike Tomlin had been chosen to replace Cowher. However an NFL source confirmed on January 21, 2007 that Tomlin had not heard from the Steelers and no contract negotiations had taken place. Grimm was one of three finalists to replace Cowher, along with Tomlin and Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Ron Rivera.

24 hours later Tomlin was announced as the Steelers new coach. Steelers' President Art Rooney II told CBS Sports on January 23, 2007 that no formal offer was ever made to Grimm, explaining that team reps did talk about an offer and contract numbers with both Grimm and Tomlin on January 20th. Rooney explained, "We did tell Russ nothing would be final until Sunday". I feel bad if he got the wrong impression." As a result Prisuta's story was discredited[4] and he later resigned in 2009 from the Tribune-Review to accept a position with Pittsburgh's WDVE Radio.[5]


As a prep, Grimm punted, played quarterback and linebacker at Southmoreland High School while earning nine varsity letters and starring on the basketball team. Grimm was inducted into the Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. His younger brother, Donn , was a starting linebacker on Notre Dame 1988 national championship team and signed with the Cardinals as a rookie free agent in 1991. He has four children, Chad, Cody, and fraternal twins Devin and Dylan. All of his children attended Oakton High School in Fairfax County, Virginia. Chad played and Cody currently plays football at Virginia Tech, and Dylan plays lacrosse at Loyola University Maryland[6].


External links


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