Leo Barker

Leo Barker
Date of birth (1959-11-07) November 7, 1959
Place of birth Cristobal, Panama Canal Zone
Career information
Position(s) Linebacker
College New Mexico State
NFL draft 1984 / Round: 7 / Pick 177
Career history
As player
1984–1991 Cincinnati Bengals
Career stats

Leonardo Barker (born November 7, 1959 in Cristobal, Panama Canal Zone) was the first person born in Panama to play in the NFL. He played for the Cincinnati Bengals from 1984 until 1991. He played varsity football at Rainbow City/Cristobal in his native Panama. From 2008 to 2010, he was the head coach of the Hornets of Roswell High School.[1] He lived in Roswell, Georgia, with his family, and taught Spanish. Currently, he lives with his family in Alpharetta,GA and is the defensive back coach for the Cambridge Bears.

College career

Barker was a member of the New Mexico State University Aggies football team from 1979 to 1983. He was a starting (linebacker) every year he played and was second on the team in tackles his junior and senior seasons. At New Mexico State, Barker racked up 378 career tackles; enough to place him number four on the all-time Aggie list. In 2003, Leo Barker was inducted into the New Mexico State University Intercollegiate Athletic Hall of Fame.

NFL career

He was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the seventh round of the NFL draft in 1983. He played for the Bengals until 1992, when he retired. Barker was an integral part of the Bengals’ nickel-package defense. In 1989, Barker helped lead them to a league best 12-4 record and an appearance in Super Bowl XXIII.


  1. "Roswell Picks Former NFLer as New Coach". Atlanta Journal Constitution. April 21, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-21.
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