A star at Northeastern University, Dan Ross was chosen in the 2nd round of the 1979 NFL Draft (30th selection overall) by the Cincinnati Bengals, a team on whom Ross made an immediate impact.  In 1981 he caught 71 receptions for 910 yards and 5 touchdowns, a single season franchise record for catches that was unbroken until 1995.  Helping the Bengals go from the cellar to an appearance in Super Bowl XVI, Ross set a Super Bowl record by catching 11 Ken Anderson passes in the contest, but it wasn't enough to prevent the San Francisco 49'ers from winning their first of five NFL titles.

Selected to the Pro Bowl after the 1982 season, Ross was one of the first "name" players to jump leagues, running out his contract with the Bengals in 1983 and signing with the New Orleans Breakers for 1984.  In New Orleans the tight end equalled his NFL performances, catching 65 passes for 833 yards.  Moving with the team to Portland for 1985, Ross again was a featured part of Dick Coury's offense, catching 41 passes for 522 yards and 5 touchdowns.  Released by the Breakers once it was evident that the USFL wouldn't be returning to play anytime soon, Ross rejoined the Bengals that fall, but ended 1985 in a Seattle Seahawks uniform.  In 1986 he'd wrap up his football career playing for the Green Bay Packers in a back-up role.

After football, Ross returned to New England and started his own company, Power House Supply.  On the evening of May 16, 2006, Ross collapsed at his home in Atkinson, New Hampshire following a run.  Rushed to a nearby hospital, doctors were unable to revive him.  Ross was just 49 years old.

DAN ROSS

New Orleans/Portland Breakers

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