Joe Wendryhoski
Date of birth: (1939-03-01)March 1, 1939
Place of birth: West Frankfort, Illinois
Date of death: November 6, 2008(2008-11-06) (aged 69)
Career information
Position(s): Guard
College: University of Illinois
 As player:
British Columbia Lions (CFL)
Los Angeles Rams
New Orleans Saints
Playing stats at

Joseph Stanley "Joe" Wendryhoski (March 1, 1939 – November 6, 2008) was a professional American football player who played guard for five seasons in the National Football League.

Wendryhoski was born on March 1, 1939 in West Frankfort, Illinois, where he attended West Frankfort High School. He played college football at the University of Illinois from 1958 to 1961 and was voted all-Big Ten Conference in 1960.[1]

At 6 feet (1.8 m), 2-inches tall and 245 pounds, Wendryhoski played Center, Guard and Offensive guard.[1] He played briefly for the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League and was drafted by the Chicago Bears in 1964 before being traded to the Rams.[2] He played for the Los Angeles Rams for three seasons, from 1964 to 1966, appearing in a total of 31 games for the team. Selected by the team in the 1967 NFL Expansion Draft, he was an inaugural member of the New Orleans Saints, playing for the team in both 1967 and 1968 and played every offensive snap as the starting center under head coach Tom Fears, appearing in 14 games each season with the Saints. He recovered a fumble for the Saints in 1968, the only fumble recovery of his career.[1][2]

Wendryhoski, along with several of his Saints teammates, appeared in the film Number One, which starred Charlton Heston as a fading New Orleans quarterback.

After retiring from the Saints, Wendryhoski served as a Vice President for the Saints Hall of Fame Museum (now located in the Louisiana Superdome) from its inception in 1988. Wendryhoski lived in Metairie, Louisiana, where he ran a real estate business, and also had a residence in Wisconsin.[3]

He died at age 69 on November 6, 2008 after a short illness in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, after having battled with cancer.[2][3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Joe Wendryhoski, database Football. Accessed November 8, 2008.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Kider, Teddy. "New Orleans Saints' Matt Lehr happy to get a fresh start", The Times-Picayune, November 6, 2008.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Trahan, Ken. "Former Saint Joe Wendryhoski Passes Away", New Orleans Saints, November 6, 2008.

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