American Football Database
American Football Database
For other people of that name, see Michael Connelly (disambiguation).
Mike Connelly
Date of birth: (1935-10-16) October 16, 1935 (age 85)
Place of birth: Monrovia, California
Career information
Position(s): Center
College: Utah State
NFL Draft: 1959 / Round: 12 / Pick: 141
(By the Los Angeles Rams)
 As player:
Dallas Cowboys
Pittsburgh Steelers
Playing stats at

Michael James Connelly (born October 16, 1935 in Monrovia, California) is a former American football offensive lineman in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers. He played college football at Utah State University and was drafted in the 12th round of the 1959 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams.

Early Years

He attended Pasadena High School. After a 2 year stint with the United States Marine Corps, he went on to play at Utah State University from 1958 to 1959, where he was a two-way player, center and guard on offense and linebacker on defense. He garnered All-Skyline Conference honors as a senior.

Professional career

Los Angeles Rams

He was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams in the 12th round of the 1959 NFL Draft and was also offered a contract to play with the Buffalo Bills of the AFL.

He was released by the Rams at the end of the 1960 preseason.

Dallas Cowboys

Connelly was claimed by the Cowboys, where he played as a backup guard during the 1960 season.

He was switched over to center before the 1961 campaign, becoming a regular starter there for four years. Connelly was very quick for his position, and as an avid weightlifter, he also became one of the strongest players on the team.

In 1965 he started to split time with Dave Manders who eventually won the starting job. He then served as a backup center and guard, until an injury to Manders put Connelly back in the starting lineup during all of the 1967 season, which included the Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers, popularly known as the Ice Bowl.

Connelly reported to training camp in 1968 and told head coach Tom Landry that he'd only play one more year. The next day he was traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers for kicker Mike Clark.

Pittsburgh Steelers

True to his word, he played only the 1968 season before retiring.