Willie Roaf

American football player (born 1970)

American football player
Willie Roaf
refer to caption
Roaf in February 2008
No. 77
Position:Offensive tackle
Personal information
Born: (1970-04-18) April 18, 1970 (age 54)
Pine Bluff, Arkansas, U.S.
Height:6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Weight:320 lb (145 kg)
Career information
High school:Pine Bluff
College:Louisiana Tech
NFL draft:1993 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8
Career history
  • New Orleans Saints (1993–2001)
  • Kansas City Chiefs (2002–2005)
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:189
Games started:189
Player stats at PFR
Pro Football Hall of Fame
College Football Hall of Fame

William Layton Roaf (born April 18, 1970), nicknamed "Nasty",[1] is an American former professional football player who was an offensive tackle in the National Football League (NFL) for 13 seasons. He played college football for Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, where he earned consensus All-American honors. He was a first-round pick in the 1993 NFL draft, and played professionally for the New Orleans Saints and Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL. An 11-time Pro Bowl selection and nine-time All-Pro, he was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 2014.

Early years

Roaf was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.[2] He graduated from Pine Bluff High School,[3] where he played for the Pine Bluff Zebras high school football and basketball teams. He was lightly recruited out of high school, and even considered pursuing basketball instead of football in college.

His father, Clifton George Roaf, was a dentist[4] and his mother, Andree Layton Roaf, was the first black woman to serve on the Arkansas Supreme Court.[5][6]

College football career

Roaf received an athletic scholarship to attend Louisiana Tech University, where he had an outstanding career for the Bulldogs from 1989 to 1992. Known for his blocking ability and his considerable speed for his size, he was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American, and was also a finalist in his senior year for the Outland Trophy for the best offensive lineman in college.[4] Roaf made appearances in the Hula Bowl and the East–West Shrine Game.

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span 40-yard dash 10-yard split 20-yard split 20-yard shuttle Vertical jump Broad jump Bench press
6 ft 4+12 in
(1.94 m)
308 lb
(140 kg)
34+78 in
(0.89 m)
10+34 in
(0.27 m)
5.03 s 1.76 s 2.92 s 4.82 s 24.0 in
(0.61 m)
9 ft 4 in
(2.84 m)
25 reps
All values from NFL Combine[7]

He began his professional football career with the NFL's New Orleans Saints, who selected him with the eighth pick of the first round in the 1993 NFL draft.[8] The draft pick was acquired from the Detroit Lions for the rights to Pat Swilling.[9] Roaf played nine seasons for the Saints;[10] he was named to seven Pro Bowls, and won a spot on both the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team and the 2000s All-Decade Team, making him the most awarded player in Saints history.[4] Roaf suffered a season-ending injury in 2001 and then was traded to the Kansas City Chiefs in March 2002 for a conditional draft choice. He played four more seasons with the Chiefs, and was selected for the Pro Bowl in each of those four years, for a total of 11 Pro Bowl selections.[4] His election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame was announced on February 4, 2012. Roaf played a pivotal role in the run block on the offense with the most rushing touchdowns back to back seasons in NFL history. #1,4 & 5.

On July 28, 2006, Roaf told the Kansas City Star that he was retiring from football. General manager Carl Peterson said he was holding out hoping that Roaf would reverse his decision, but Roaf said he was "solid" on retirement.[11] In 2009 Roaf took his first coaching job, as the offensive line coach at Santa Monica College in Santa Monica, California.[12]

Roaf has been elected to Sports Halls of Fame for Louisiana Tech Athletics (in 2003), Arkansas (in 2007),[13] Louisiana (in 2009),[4][14] Greater New Orleans (in 2012), and the New Orleans Saints (in 2008).[15] East West Shrine (2018) He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on February 4, 2012, in his second year of eligibility.[16] Roaf went into the Saints Ring of Honor (2013) Arkansas Black Hall of Fame along with his mother, a legacy inductee. (2013) Roaf was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2014.[17][18] Roaf is also in the Kansas Chiefs Chiefs Hall of Honor (2011), was as NFL 100th Anniversary Team finalist (2019), and has been inducted to the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame (2022).[citation needed]

Personal life

Roaf has two sisters and one brother. His sister Phoebe Alison Roaf is the Episcopal Bishop for the Diocese of West Tennessee.[19]

Roaf has four children and one step daughter.[20] He is married to Angela Hernandez Roaf.[21]


  1. ^ Damon Hack, "The Fall Hunt Is On at Arrowhead," New York Times (September 5, 2004). Retrieved February 15, 2012.
  2. ^ National Football League, Historical Players, Willie Roaf. Retrieved February 15, 2012.
  3. ^ databaseFootball.com, Players, Willie Roaf Archived March 2, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved February 15, 2012.
  4. ^ a b c d e Mickles, Sheldon (June 21, 2009). "Saints' Roaf ruled the line". The Advocate. p. 3C.
  5. ^ "Andree Yvonne Layton Roaf (1941–)" at Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture (retrieved July 1, 2009).
  6. ^ "Andree Layton Roaf, first black woman to serve on Arkansas Supreme Court, dies at 68" Archived July 3, 2009, at the Wayback Machine, Associated Press at KFSM-TV website, July 1, 2009.
  7. ^ "Willie Roaf, Combine Results, OT - Louisiana Tech". nflcombineresults.com. Retrieved October 19, 2022.
  8. ^ "1993 NFL Draft Listing". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved March 31, 2023.
  9. ^ Peter King, "Inside The NFL Draft," CNNSI (May 3, 1993).
  10. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com, Players, Willie Roaf. Retrieved February 15, 2012.
  11. ^ Len Pasquarelli,"Chiefs Pro Bowl tackle Roaf retires", ESPN.com, July 28, 2006
  12. ^ "Willie Roaf brings expertise to Area Combine: Former Chiefs tackle to coach linemen", Amarillo Globe-News, May 17, 2009.
  13. ^ "Willie Roaf" at Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame website (retrieved July 4, 2009).
  14. ^ Brian Allee-Walsh, "Ex-New Orleans Saints tackle Willie Roaf to make stop at the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame" Archived June 24, 2009, at the Wayback Machine, The Times-Picayune, June 20, 2009
  15. ^ Mike Triplett, "Roaf chosen for Saints' Hall of Fame", The Times-Picayune, May 21, 2008.
  16. ^ "Class of 2011 finalists". Pro Football HOF. January 9, 2011. Archived from the original on November 12, 2011. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
  17. ^ "Willie Roaf Selected to 2014 College Football Hall of Fame". Sporting Life Arkansas. May 22, 2014. Retrieved December 1, 2021.
  18. ^ "Roaf selected for college hall". Arkansas Online. May 22, 2014. Retrieved December 1, 2021.
  19. ^ Kuruvilla, Carol (May 9, 2019). "Former Lawyer Becomes First Black Female Episcopal Bishop In The South". HuffPost. Retrieved December 1, 2020.
  20. ^ Johnson, Luke (May 22, 2020). "Q&A: Willie Roaf on the toughest player he ever faced and his favorite Saints memory". nola.com. Retrieved April 12, 2022.
  21. ^ Cunningham, Jimmy (September 28, 2021). "William (Willie) Roaf (1970–)". Encyclopedia of Arkansas. Retrieved April 12, 2022.
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