Former Rams receiver Jessie dies at 57

Updated: January 17, 2006, 7:27 PM ET
Associated Press

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. -- Ron Jessie, a former receiver who played 11 seasons in the NFL, has died. He was 57.

Jessie died Friday after suffering a heart attack in his Huntington Beach home, said Brandon Jessie, one of his two sons.

Jessie was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the eighth round of the 1971 draft, but was traded that summer to the Detroit Lions, where he played for four seasons. Detroit traded him to the Los Angeles Rams in 1975 for a first-round draft pick.

Jessie's best year was 1976, when he made the Pro Bowl after catching 34 passes for 779 yards and six touchdowns for the Rams.

He was a member of the 1979 team that went to the Super Bowl, but injuries prevented him from playing in the 31-19 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He played two more years with the Buffalo Bills before retiring after the 1981 season. He finished his career with 265 receptions for 4,276 yards and 30 touchdowns.

Jessie played college football at the University of Kansas, where he was also an All-American long jumper.

Jessie is survived by his wife, Sharon; a daughter, Felicia; and another son, Ron Jr.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press