THE TOP10: Best Pro Careers

In today's installment of Tiger Rag's Top 10, we present the top "pro careers" of former LSU players. On Monday, we look at "bad breaks," the worst things that have happened to LSU over the years.



Who were the top Tigers in the pro ranks?


1. Steve Van Buren – Eagles, Pro Football Hall of Fame, oldest living member of HOF

A first-round draft pick in 1944, Van Buren ran for 444 yards in nine games during his first season. He also led the league in returning punts as a rookie. The following season, Van Buren led the NFL in rushing for the first time. He would win three additional rushing crowns during his career.


2. Jimmy Taylor – Packers, Pro Football HOF, five NFL Championships, one Super Bowl ring, first Lombardi Packer to be inducted into HOF

Taylor was drafted in the second round, the 15th overall pick. He holds many Packers records, including career rushing yards, touchdowns, and single-season touchdowns. His 1962 single-season yardage mark (1,474) was not surpassed by a Packer until Ahman Green ran for 1,883 yards in 2003. At retirement, Taylor's 83 career rushing touchdowns placed him behind only Jim Brown.


3. Y.A. Tittle – 49ers, Giants, Pro Football Hall of Fame

In a career lasting 17 years, Tittle passed for 33,070 yards and 242 touchdowns, and he twice received the NFL Most Valuable Player Award. In 1971, he was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. One of pro football's greatest quarterbacks never to win the NFL Championship, Tittle did throw seven touchdown passes in the October 28, 1962, game against the Washington Redskins that the Giants won 49-34.


4. Johnny Robinson – KC Chiefs, All-Time All-AFL team, started two Super Bowls

Robinson was a six-time All-American Football League selection who played a Super Bowl game with three broken ribs. Five times the interception leader on the Chiefs, Robinson redefined the role of the safety in professional football.


5. Bert Jones – Baltimore Colts, L.A. Rams, All-Pro and Offensive POY (1976)

Jones was chosen in the first round (2nd overall) of the NFL Draft by the Baltimore Colts. During his eight-year tenure as the Colts' starting QB, Jones and his teammates enjoyed three consecutive AFC East division titles (1975–77). The 1976 regular season was his finest as a professional as he threw for 3,104 yards and a career-high 24 touchdowns, compiling a passer rating of 102.5. Jones was one of only three quarterbacks to achieve a 100+ passer rating during the entire decade of the 1970s.


6. Alan Faneca Pittsburgh Steelers, six-time All-Pro

Faneca was picked by Pittsburgh in the first round (26th overall) of the 1998 NFL Draft. After battling through injuries early in his career, Faneca was named All-Pro in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007.


7. Kevin Mawae 14-year active veteran, Seahawks, Jets, Titans, six-time All-Pro

Mawae is one of the top centers of recent times, having been selected to the Pro Bowl on six consecutive occasions (1999-2004). His unbroken streak of 177 games came to an end in October 2005 with a serious tricep injury to his left arm, and he missed the rest of the season.


8. Jerry Stovall – St. Louis Cardinals, All-Pro

Stovall was the 2nd overall pick in the 1963 NFL Draft, selected by the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals converted him to full-time defensive back. During his nine seasons with the Cardinals, Stovall had 18 interceptions in 97 games and was selected to the Pro Bowl after the 1966, 1967 and 1969 seasons.


9. Tommy Casanova – Cincinnati Bengals, All-Pro

In 1972, Casanova was drafted 29th overall by the Cincinnati Bengals. He played safety for the Bengals from 1972 to 1977, being selected to the Pro Bowl in 1974, 1975, 1976, and 1977. Known as a faster-than-average, hard-hitting free safety, Casanova also collected 17 career interceptions in what is considered a short career.


10. Fred Miller – Baltimore Colts, All-Pro, two Super Bowls, one ring

Miller taken in seventh round as the 93rd pick in the 1962 NFL Draft. A defensive lineman from 1963 through 1972, he appeared in Super Bowl III and Super Bowl V for the Baltimore Colts.



Honorable Mention:


Billy Cannon - Houston, Okaland, Kansas City, led league rushing 1961, injury forced him to change positions to tight end, caught 45 TD passes through the 1960s


Jim Cason – 49ers, Rams, All-Pro


Kevin Faulk Patriots, three Super Bowl rings


Domanick Davis Texans, 2003-04 NFL Rookie of the Year


Eddie Kennison Rams, Saints, Bears, Broncos, Chiefs, 11-year active veteran


Kenny Konz – Cleveland Browns, three NFL championship teams, All-Pro

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