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  • 2006 USC News

  • Ken Ruettgers (born August 20, 1962 in Bakersfield, CA) is a retired National Football League offensive lineman who played for the Green Bay Packers from 1985 to 1996.

    Ruettgers played college football under scholarship at the University of Southern California, where he was named to the All-Pac 10 Conference Team in 1984.

    This first round draft choice, 89 Packers' Offensive MVP, and 12-year NFL veteran did not set his sights on a pro career until he was almost there. He was not a big fan of pro football. He just enjoyed the activity in sports. He liked being competitive in whatever level I played at.

    His career at Central Valley High School in Bakersfield, California was focused on the immediate fun and immediate challenges. Not until his junior year did Ken even find out that colleges would pay for your education if you would come play football....he learned about "football scholarships", decided that was a good goal, and he got it!

    Ken joined a strong USC squad and was on the offensive line protecting USC runner and Heisman trophy winner Marcus Allen. Other teammates were Bruce Matthews and Rodney Pete... but for Ken, being a USC star paled in comparison to the fun he was having on the field!

    After graduating from USC, he was drafted in the first-round of the 1985 NFL Draft (7th pick) by Green Bay where he remained for his professional career.

    Ken's pro career is summed up by the word consistent. Facing the best pass rushers in the league every week, guys like Richard Dent and Lawrence Taylor, Ken's job was to beat the odds. Ken's 12-year stint itself beat the odds... his NFL career endured longer than average... most of his former USC teammates had retired before 1996!

    Ken, the team's offensive left tackle, had to officially retire from football in the middle of the 1996 season (bad knee pain made playing unbearable), he was on the sidelines amid the thrill of victory in Super Bowl XXXI. The Packers' 35-21 victory over the New England Patriots brought the Vince Lombardi trophy home-- Green Bay was the team that the legendary Lombardi coached so successfully!


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