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Ray Alexander (gridiron football)
No. 80, 87     
Personal information
Date of birth: (1962-01-08) January 8, 1962 (age 58)
Place of birth: Miami, Florida
Career information
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
Roster status: Retired
Career highlights and awards
  • N/A

Vernest Raynard Alexander (born January 8, 1962) is a former gridiron football wide receiver in the National Football League for the Denver Broncos and Dallas Cowboys.[1] He also played eight seasons in the Canadian Football League for three teams. He played college football at Florida A&M University.[2]

Early yearsEdit

Alexander attended John Shaw High School, before moving on to Florida A&M University. He became a starter at wide receiver as a sophomore, posting 38 receptions for 535 yards and one touchdown. The next year, he registered 41 receptions for 941 yards and 10 touchdowns.

He was a dominant player as a senior, earning MEAC offensive player of the year honors, while tallying 57 receptions for 1,079 yards and 9 touchdowns.

Alexander finished his college career with school records for career receptions, career receiving yards (2,632), career touchdown receptions (20), career 100-yard receiving games (6), single-season receiving yards (1,079), single-season receptions (57), single-game receptions, single-game receiving yards and single-game receiving touchdowns (3).

In 1995, he was inducted into the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Hall of Fame.[3]

Professional careerEdit

Denver BroncosEdit

Alexander was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Denver Broncos after the 1984 NFL Draft. He played as a reserve in 8 games, registering 8 receptions for 132 yards and one touchdown.[4] He was waived on August 26, 1985.[5]

Calgary StampedersEdit

In 1986, he signed with the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League. He was named a starter at wide receiver, registering 88 catches (third in the league) for 1,590 yards (second in the league) and 10 touchdowns, while receiving West All-Star honors.

Dallas CowboysEdit

On March 23, 1987, the Dallas Cowboys signed him as a free agent, hoping that his success in Canada could translate into the National Football League.[6] He suffered a broken left wrist during training camp and was placed on the injured reserve list.[7]

The next year, the team lost promising wide receiver Mike Sherrard to injury for a second year in a row and Alexander became a starter in a young receivers corps, that included rookie Michael Irvin. He led the team with 54 ctaches for 788 yards and 6 touchdowns. Almost a third of his 54 receptions were a first down (11) or a touchdown (5) on third or fourth down situations. He had a career-high 112 yards on 8 receptions against the Philadelphia Eagles. He was released on September 1, 1989,[8] and later re-signed on September 18 to play in two games.[9]

BC LionsEdit

On March 13, 1990, he returned for a second stint in the Canadian Football League, signing as a free agent with the BC Lions.[10] In his first season back, he recorded 65 receptions for 1,120 yards and his second West All-Star award.

In 1991, he had a career-year with 104 catches for 1,650 yards and received both West and CFL All-Star honors. He was released in June 1992, only to be re-signed in August, finishing with 10 games and 56 receptions for 786 yards.

In 1993, he returned to form with 77 receptions for 1,300 yards and 4 touchdowns. The next year, he recorded 85 catches for 1,234 yards and 6 touchdowns, receiving his last West All-Star nod.

Ottawa Rough RidersEdit

In 1995, he was signed as a free agent by the Ottawa Rough Riders, posting 59 receptions for 801 yards and 5 touchdowns in 14 games. On March 13, 1996, he was traded back to the BC Lions in exchange for wide receiver Robert Gordon, but never played another game.[11]

ReferencesEdit

  1. Total Football II: The Official Encyclopedia of the National Football League. New York: HarperCollins, 1999. 554.
  2. Hollander, Zander. The Complete Handbook of Pro Football, 1989. Canada: Penguin, 1989. 72.
  3. "Johnson Among B-cc Trio Honored". http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/1995-05-26/sports/9505260285_1_meac-b-cc-hall-of-fame. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  4. "Youth will be served in the Denver Broncos' training camp". http://www.upi.com/Archives/1984/07/06/Youth-will-be-served-in-the-Denver-Broncos-training/7253457934400/. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  5. "Transactions". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1979&dat=19850827&id=5ZAiAAAAIBAJ&sjid=5q0FAAAAIBAJ&pg=3941,9348172&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  6. "Cowboys ink Alexander". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1665&dat=19870324&id=Qc8dAAAAIBAJ&sjid=cCQEAAAAIBAJ&pg=3176,6444488&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  7. "Florida Players". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1901&dat=19870805&id=A9ApAAAAIBAJ&sjid=FsoEAAAAIBAJ&pg=1355,2502808&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  8. "Sports Transactions". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1916&dat=19890902&id=Tv8gAAAAIBAJ&sjid=anQFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1327,510440&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  9. "Johnson Searching For Winning Answers". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=861&dat=19890919&id=00NSAAAAIBAJ&sjid=JDYNAAAAIBAJ&pg=5364,3895377&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  10. "Tuesday's Moves". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1755&dat=19900314&id=2rUcAAAAIBAJ&sjid=BXoEAAAAIBAJ&pg=5276,5556597&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  11. "Wednesday Moves". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1755&dat=19960314&id=7H8fAAAAIBAJ&sjid=5XwEAAAAIBAJ&pg=2546,4075075&hl=es. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
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