Bill Roe (American football)

Bill Roe
No. 56, 54
Position: Linebacker
Personal information
Date of birth: (1958-02-06)February 6, 1958
Place of birth: South Bend, Indiana
Date of death: September 13, 2003(2003-09-13) (aged 45)
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight: 233 lb (106 kg)
Career information
High school: Thornwood (IL)
College: Colorado
NFL Draft: 1980 / Round: 3 / Pick: 78
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR

William Oliver Roe II (February 6, 1958 September 13, 2003) is a former professional American football linebacker in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys and the New Orleans Saints. He also played in the United States Football League for the Boston Breakers, Memphis Showboats and the Birmingham Stallions. He played college football at the University of Colorado.

Early years

Roe attended Thornwood High School before moving on to the University of Colorado Boulder. He became a starter at inside linebacker as a junior and received honorable mention All-Big Eight honors.[1]

As a senior he received All-Big Eight honors, after leading the conference in tackles (162) and the team in interceptions (3).[2] He had 10 or more tackles in seven games and became the first player to win Big Eight Defensive Player of the Week honors two weeks in a row (Nov. 17 and Nov. 24). His best game came against Kansas State University, when he registered 24 tackles (second most in school history) and 2 interceptions.[3]

Professional career

Dallas Cowboys

After the Dallas Cowboys entered the 1980 NFL Draft without their first and second round draft choices (traded to the Baltimore Colts for John Dutton), the team made Roe their first selection in the third round (78th overall). As a rookie he played mainly on special teams.

The Cowboys placed him on the injured reserve list on August 24, 1981.[4] He was released on September 3, 1982.[5]

Boston Breakers (USFL)

On January 1983, he signed with the Denver Gold of the United States Football League, which traded him along with the rights to Dick Jauron to the Boston Breakers in February, in exchange for the rights to Tom Davis and an eighth round draft choice.[6] The Breakers named him their starting inside linebacker.

Memphis Showboats (USFL)

In 1984, he was the Memphis Showboats starting inside linebacker, before being traded in May to the Birmingham Stallions in exchange for a future draft choice.

Birmingham Stallions (USFL)

With the Birmingham Stallions he was a standout linebacker on the league's top defense, before the United States Football League folded.[7]

New Orleans Saints

After the players went on a strike on the third week of the 1987 season, those contests were canceled (reducing the 16 game season to 15) and the NFL decided that the games would be played with replacement players. Roe was signed to be a part of the New Orleans Saints replacement team, that was given the mock name "Saint Elsewheres" by the media. He went on to start all three games at linebacker, before being released once the strike ended.[8]

Personal life

Roe died on September 13, 2003.


  1. "Sooners dominate All-Big Eight". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  2. "Buffs For Ever". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  3. "Buffs belt Wildcats, 21-6". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  4. "Cowboys lacking in consistency". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  5. "Pokes Keep Six Rookies". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  6. "Transactions". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  7. "U.S.F.L.; Stars Win, Gain Championship Berth". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  8. "Rosters Interesting If Nothing Else". Retrieved February 19, 2016.
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