1973 - 1986 (14 Seasons)
207 Games Played
42.4 Yard Average Per Punt
7 Pro Bowls
William Ray Guy was a first round draft pick of the Oakland Raiders in the 1973 draft. He was the 23rd player picked overall.
Ray attended college at the University of Southern Mississippi. There, he set school records in placekicking, punting and as a defensive back.
He finished with a career punting average of 44.7 yards a kick, which is the highest average in NCAA history for punters with 200-249 attempts in their careers.
Guy was the NCAA punting champion in 1972 with a 46.2 average. He averaged 45.3 and 42.9 in his other seasons.
Guy's 8 interception in one season is still a Golden Eagles record. Guy is second All Time in school history with 18 career interceptions. His 268 interception return yardage is currently the third most in school history.
Guy also set a then NCAA record when he kicked a 61 yard field goal, and still ranks fourth in school history in the most field goals made in a career.
In 1972, he was a member of The Sporting News, Football Writers Association, Walter Camp, Gridiron, Football News, Playboy and Associated Press All-America teams as a Safety and Punter.
Guy was named Most Valuable Player of the 1972 College All-Star game, in which college all-stars played the current Super Bowl champion.
Ray was also outstanding in baseball. He struck out 266 players in 220.2 innings, and threw 14 complete games in 31 total games in his career. He was drafted by Major League Baseball for 3 straight years.
Ray Guy is the first Golden Eagle to ever play in the NFL. He is also the first player to have his jersey retired in school history.
Guy is not only a member of Southern Mississippi's All Century Team, but he is also a member of the schools Hall of Fame, the Mississippi and Georgia Sports Halls of Fame, and the National High School Sports Hall of Fame.
Guy is also the first punter to ever be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Ray Guy is considered the greatest Punter to have ever played college football, and has a trophy named after him. The Ray Guy Award is given annually to the best collegiate punter in the nation.
Ray Guy is the first punter to ever be drafted in the first round by the NFL. His impact was immediate. He was named to the Pro Bowl as a rookie, when he averaged 45.3 yards per punt.
Guy would be named the Pro Bowl Punter every year up until 1978. At the 1976 Pro Bowl, Ray Guy became the first punter to hit the Louisiana Superdome video screen.
In 1979, he was named to the UPI All Conference Second Team, and the Newspaper Ent. Association All-NFL Second Team. He was named to his final Pro Bowl in 1980 after averaging 43.6 yards per punt. He also booted a career long punt of 77 yards that year.
For some unknown reason, he was not named to the 1981 Pro Bowl, despite punting a career high 96 times and having a 43.7 average. He was named to the UPI All Conference Second Team.
Guy booted the ball over 70 yards in four of his seasons, and kicked five over 60 yards in one season alone. His shortest season long was 57, in the strike shortened 1982 season.
That season also was the only season of his career when he did not average over 40 yards per punt, finishing with a 39.1 average. Guy ended the last three years of his career averaging 90 punts per season, when he retired after the 1986 season.
Ray Guy did more than just punt for the Raiders. He threw 3 career passes, completing 2 for 54 yards. His first career pass was intercepted. Guy also rushed for 43 yards on 11 attempts. In 1976, Guy was asked to kick an extra point, but missed.
Ray only had 3 punts blocked in his entire career, and never had a punt returned for a touchdown. He led the NFL in punting three times also. He also kicked off for aging kicker George Blanda, a Hall of Famer.
Ray Guy was an integral part of the Raiders. He also was on 3 Super Bowl winning teams in Oakland during his career. The highlight of his Super Bowls was in 1983. His punt in Super Bowl XVIII pinned Washington inside their 12 yard line, which led to a Raiders touchdown via a turnover the next play.
Ray was named the punter on the National Football League's 75th Anniversary Team, the Super Bowl Silver Anniversary Team and as a member of the NFL 1970's All Century team. He was recently inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame.
If you saw Ray Guy, you must be scratching your head right now as to why he isn't yet in Canton. His punts were legendary. Other teams would test the balls that he punted for helium, due to the heights his punts attained.
I had thought, after seeing Kicker Jan Stenerud inducted in 1991, that the voters were FINALLY recognizing the importance of special teams. In 1994, Guy was the first punter to be nominated, but he still has not been elected.
I find myself often questioning the football knowledge of the voters. Some claim to be "purists", saying that specialist do not belong because they only get on the field for a few plays each game. Still, isn't Cantons reason for existence based upon what players do once on the field?
There is NO DOUBT that Ray Guy helped the Raiders win many games. Even if you disregard his statistics, you cannot look past his impact on football at all levels. Wake up the voter in the media that represents your area. Ray Guy deserves his place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame right now!
Notable Players Drafted In 1973 (* Denotes Canton Inductee)
1. John Matuszak, DE, Houston Oilers
2. Bert Jones, QB, Baltimore Colts
3. Jerry Sisemore, OT,Philadelphia
4. John Hannah, G, New England *
5. Dave Butz, DT, Saint Louis Cardinals
6. Charle Young, TE, Philadelphia
8. Wally Chambers, DT, Chicago
9. Otis Armstrong, RB, Denver
10. Joe Ehrmann, DT, Baltimore
11. Sam Cunningham, FB, New England
12. Chuck Foreman, RB, Minnesota
13. Burgess Owens, DB, NY Jets
15. Isaac Curtis, WR, Cincinnati
19. Darryl Stingley, WR, New England
20. Billy Joe Dupree, TE, Dallas
24. J.T. Thomas, DB, Pittsburgh
26. Joe DeLamielleure. G, Buffalo *
28. Guy Morriss, C, Philadelphia
29. Derland Moore, DT, New Orleans
30. Greg Pruitt, RB, Cleveland
31. Cullen Bryant, RB, LA Rams
35. Mike Barnes, DT, Baltimore
36. Barney Chavous, DE, Denver
37. Ron Jaworski, QB, LA Rams
40. Brad Van Pelt, LB, NY Giants
41. Willie Harper, LB, San Francisco
42. Jim Youngblood, LB, LA Rams
49. Monte Johnson, LB, Oakland
53. Harvey Martin, DE, Dallas
54. Paul Howard, G, Denver
55. Randy Logan, DB, Philadelphia
56. Brad Dusek, LB, New England
63. Terry Metcalf, RB, Saint Louis
64. Dan Fouts, QB, San Diego *
71. Jim Laslavic, LB, Detroit
78. Leon Gray, OT, Miami
79. Gregg Bingham, LB, Houston
88. Tom Jackson, LB, Denver
91. Dick Jauron, DB, Detroit
92. Perry Smith, DB, Oakland
93. Andy Dorris, DE, Cleveland
103. Jeff Yeates, DE, Buffalo
106. Dave Reavis, OT, Pittsburgh
107. Allan Ellis, DB, Chicago
109. Tom Brahaney, C, Saint Louis
110. Wallace Francis, WR, Buffalo
111. Don Strock, QB, Miami
115. Cody Jones, DT, LA Rams
118. Brent McClanahan, RB, Minnesota
156. Ed Newman, G, Miami
157. Shelby Jordan, T, Houston
166. John Grant, DT, Denver
189. Ray Oldham, DB, Baltimore
192. Loren Toews, LB, Pittsburgh
217. Lyle Blackwood, DB, Denver
245. Ken Stone, DB, Washington
248. Nick Mike-Mayer, K, Atlanta
249. Lenvil Elliott, RB, Cincinnati
270. Dan Neal, C, Baltimore
281. Carl Barisich, DT, Cleveland
288. Joe Lavender, CB, Philadelphia
289. Paul Orndorff, RB, New Orleans (WWE Hall of Fame)
300. Garry Puetz, G, NY Jets
302. Boobie Clark, RB, Cincinnati
308. Larry McCarren, C, Green Bay
342. Ray Hamilton, DT, New England
353. Brian Kelley, LB, NY Giants
429. Dave Winfield, TE, Minnesota (MLB Hall of Fame)