Joe Lavender

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Joe Lavender
No. 30, 20
Personal information
Born: (1949-02-10) February 10, 1949 (age 70)
Rayville, Louisiana
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:190 lb (86 kg)
Career information
High school:El Centro (CA) Central Union
College:San Diego State
NFL Draft:1973 / Round: 12 / Pick: 288
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Fumble recoveries:7
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR

Joseph "Joe" Lavender (born February 10, 1949) is a former American football cornerback who played ten seasons in the National Football League (NFL) for the Philadelphia Eagles from 19731975, and the Washington Redskins from 19761982.[1]

Born in rural Rayville, Louisiana, Joe moved with his parents to Southern California as a boy, where he attended Central Union High School in El Centro, California. He played college football at nearby San Diego State from 1969-72, then was selected by the Eagles in the twelfth round of the 1973 NFL Draft.

Professional career[edit]

On September 23, 1974, the Eagles played the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football in Philadelphia. In the third quarter, Lavender scooped up a fumble at his own four-yard-line and returned it 96 yards for a touchdown -- the longest such play in Monday Night history. (It also proved to be the difference in the game, as the Eagles won, 13-10.) Just six days later, Lavender recorded another defensive touchdown against the Baltimore Colts, when he picked off a Bert Jones pass and brought it back 37 yards for the score.

Traded to Washington in 1976, he replaced Mike Bass as the starting cornerback opposite the other cornerback, Pat Fischer and had eight interceptions. Lavender was selected to the Pro Bowl twice, after the 1979 and 1980 seasons, pulling down six INTs both years (he would finish with 33 for his 139-game career). Hampered by injuries, Lavender was replaced as a starter during the truncated 1982 season, by rookie Vernon Dean. Lavender remained on the team as a backup, and the Redskins won Super Bowl XVII, which was also Lavender's final game.

After Football[edit]

In 1986, Lavender was arrested in El Cajon for carrying an illegal knife.[2]