He played eight seasons for the Chargers, through the 1967 season. He played the next four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, including in their inaugural season of 1968. In 1968 and 1969, the Bengals were in the AFL; in 1970, they moved to the NFL as the two leagues merged. He returned to the Chargers to finish his career in 1972.
Wright was one of only 20 men who played all 10 years of the AFL's existence.
In 1994, Wright founded The Pro Kids Golf Academy and Learning Center, a nonprofit organization for inner-city youth in San Diego. Wright was the first winner of the Ernie H. Wright Humanitarian Award, which the San Diego Hall of Champions had established in his honor. The award was presented to Wright during the hall's awards banquet in 2007.
He became a sports talent agent and later became the western regional chief for the NFL Players Association. He later operated a series of installations for people convicted of misdemeanors.