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Luther Elliss
No. 94     
Defensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1973-03-22) March 22, 1973 (age 46)
Place of birth: Mancos, Colorado
Career information
College: Utah
NFL Draft: 1995 / Round: 1 / Pick: 20
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
 As player:
* Detroit Lions ( 1995)
 As coach:
* Idaho (2017-present) (DL)
Career highlights and awards
* 2× Pro Bowl (1999, 2000)
  • Consensus All-American (1994)
  • WAC Defensive Player of the Year (1994)
  • 3× First-team All-WAC (1992–1994)
Games played     134
Games started     119
Tackles     331
Quarterback sacks     29.0
Fumbles recovered     7
Stats at NFL.com
Stats at pro-football-reference.com

Luther John Elliss (born March 22, 1973) is a former American college and professional football player who was a defensive tackle in the National Football League (NFL) for ten seasons. He played college football for the University of Utah, and was recognized as an All-American. Drafted in the first round of the 1995 NFL Draft, Elliss played professionally for the Detroit Lions and Denver Broncos of the NFL. He was a two-time Pro Bowler.

Elliss currently coaches college football, serving as the defensive line coach for the Idaho Vandals football team.

Early yearsEdit

Elliss was born in Mancos, Colorado.[1] He attended Mancos High School,[2] and played for the Mancos Blue Jays high school football and basketball teams.

College careerEdit

Elliss received an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Utah, and played for the Utah Utes football team as a defensive lineman from 1991 to 1994. He chose Utah since basketball coach Ron McBride told him that he could also play on the basketball team under coach Rick Majerus. After one season he decided to play football full-time. He was a first-team All-Western Athletic Conference (WAC) selection in 1992, 1993 and 1994. As a senior in 1994, he was recognized as a consensus first-team All American, and was named the WAC Defensive Player of the Year.

Professional careerEdit

The Detroit Lions selected Elliss in the first round (20th pick overall) of the 1995 NFL Draft,[3] and he played for the Lions from 1995 to 2003.[1] His nickname during his time in Detroit was "Pass Rushing Luther," and earned it with 324 tackles and 27.0 quarterback sacks with the Lions.[4] The Lions released him after appearing in only five games in 2003. He played his final season with the Denver Broncos in 2004, seeing action in eight games and registering two sacks.[4]

In his ten-season NFL career, he played in 134 regular season games, started 119 of them, and compiled 331 tackles, 29.0 sacks, seven fumble recoveries, four forced fumbles, and four deflected passes.[4] He was a Pro Bowl selection in 1999 and 2000.[4]

NFL statisticsEdit

Year Team Games Combined Tackles Tackles Assisted Tackles Sacks Forced Fumbles Fumble Recoveries
1995 DET 16 19 9 10 0.0 0 0
1996 DET 14 49 26 23 6.5 0 0
1997 DET 16 59 35 24 8.5 0 2
1998 DET 16 49 37 12 3.0 0 1
1999 DET 15 45 29 16 3.5 3 2
2000 DET 16 39 23 16 3.0 0 2
2001 DET 14 30 25 5 0.0 1 0
2002 DET 14 25 18 7 2.5 1 0
2004 DEN 8 7 6 1 2.0 0 0
Career 129 322 208 114 29.0 5 7
[5]

Coaching careerEdit

On February 27, 2017, Elliss was announced as the new defensive line coach for the Idaho Vandals football team under head coach Paul Petrino.[6] Prior to joining the Vandals, he spent two seasons as the team chaplain for the Denver Broncos of the NFL.[7]

Personal lifeEdit

Elliss and his wife, Rebecca, have 12 children – seven of whom are adopted.[8] Two of his sons, Christian and Kaden, play (or played) football for Idaho. In 2019, his son Kaden Elliss was drafted by the New Orleans Saints[9].

Elliss is a former resident of Oakland Township, Michigan, in suburban Detroit.[10]

ReferencesEdit

Template:Lions1995DraftPicks

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