The Pug (Anthony Pugliese) takes a look at the best players in the NFL’s history to wear every number from 0(00) up to 99.
In the first part of a ten part series, The Pug tells you who the best players to put on jersey numbers 0-9 were (or are).
#0: Jim Otto, Center
#NFL Kickoff Countdown:
IT'S TIME…..AT LONG LAST.
— Kevin Gallagher (@KevG163) September 8, 2016
Although Otto wore 00, technically 00 and 0 are the same number so they have been included together. Otto played 15 years at center for the Oakland Raiders from 1960 -1974, not missing a single game and that includes the preseason. He was an all-star in 13 of his 15 seasons, and was named the starting center on the AFL All-Time Team. Otto is also one of only 20 players to participate in every season of the AFL’s existence.
Jim Otto was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1980, his first year of eligibility.
“Football as a team game demands sacrifice and discipline. You’ve got to think of the guy playing next to you and try to help him. To do that you have to sacrifice.”
– Jim Otto via profootballhof.com
Otto punished his body during his career, resulting in over 70 surgeries and eventually having his leg amputated in 2007. He described his journey in his book Jim Otto: The Pain of Glory, but says that if he could do it again he would do it the same way. Otto is the poster child for toughness that the Raiders have been boasting about since the 1960’s.
Honorable Mention: Ken Burrough