Rusty Tillman

For the Major League Baseball player, see Rusty Tillman (baseball).
Rusty Tillman
No. 67
Position: Linebacker
Kick returner
Personal information
Date of birth: (1946-02-27) February 27, 1946
Place of birth: Beloit, Wisconsin
Career information
High school: Beloit Memorial (WI)
College: Northern Arizona
Undrafted: 1970
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played: 107
Fumble recoveries: 3
Kick return average: 9.9
Player stats at

Russell Arthur Tillman (born February 27, 1946) is a former American football player who played linebacker in the National Football League for the Washington Redskins from 1970 to 1977.

Tillman was nicknamed “The King” for his special teams mastery. He played seven different special teams positions and served as special teams captain from 1974 to 1977. He was a member of Washington’s 1972 NFC Championship squad.

After retiring from football, Tillman stayed in the NFL as an assistant coach for the Seattle Seahawks for 16 years, where he coached special teams, tight ends, linebackers before becoming defensive coordinator. He also spent time as assistant with Tampa Bay, Oakland, Indianapolis and Minnesota. He served as head coach of the XFL’s New York/New Jersey Hitmen. Tillman was called "Gutless Rusty" by WWF announcer and sitting Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura. But he was also called "The only sane man in the XFL".

Tillman also spent one season assistant coaching a GEJFA team in Washington, the Woodinville Falcons, where his son played. Tillman was a special teams coach in the NFL for the Seattle Seahawks in the 1980s and the Minnesota Vikings under Mike Tice.

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