American Football Database
Mark Walen
No. 95     
Defensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1963-03-10) March 10, 1963 (age 59)
Place of birth: San Francisco, California
Career information
College: UCLA
NFL Draft: 1986 / Round: 3 / Pick: 74
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
* Dallas Cowboys ( 1986)
Career highlights and awards
* Second-team All-American (1985)
  • All-Pac-10 (1985)
  • Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year (1985)
Stats at

Mark Hartley Walen (born March 10, 1963) is a former professional American football defensive tackle in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys. He played college football at UCLA.

Early years

As a fifth-year senior he was a key part of the seventh-ranked total defense (number 1 in rush defense),[1] that included the play of Ken Norton Jr., Carnell Lake, James Washington, Jim Wahler and Darryl Henley. After finishing the season with 74 tackles (third on the team) and 9 sacks (led the team), he received Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, second-team All-American and All-Pac-10 honors.[2]

In his college career, he recorded 185 tackles, 20 sacks and 30 tackles for loss. In 2005, he was inducted into the San Mateo County Sports Hall of Fame.

Professional career

Walen was selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the third round of the 1986 NFL Draft. As a rookie, he was lost for the year after fracturing a bone in his right ankle, while completing a 1 1/2-mile run on the last day of the Cowboys' rookie orientation in May.[3] The next year he had some few snaps on passing situations.

In 1988, he had his best season when in a reserve role (started only 2 games) he registered 4 sacks (fifth on the team). On September 25, he replaced and ineffective Kevin Brooks against the Atlanta Falcons, making 4 tackles and one sack. On October 30, he started in place of Brooks against the Phoenix Cardinals, registering 9 tackles, 2 sacks and blocked an extra point.

The next season, he emerged as one of the full-time starters on the defensive line at left tackle, but was placed on the injured reserve list after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during the second pre-season game against the Los Angeles Raiders.[4]

On August 22, 1990, he was waived after leaving the team in training camp, in reaction to being moved to the offensive line and then back again to the defensive line in the span of a week.[5]