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Tony Tolbert: A 90’s Defensive Legend

Tony Tolbert was a northern kid with southern blood

Born in Tuskegee, Alabama but grew up in Englewood, New Jersey, Tony Tolbert was a northern kid with southern blood. He played defensive end at Dwight Morrow High School where he was an All-American. When it came time for college, Tolbert could not start away from his southern roots, accepting a football scholarship from the University of Texas-El Paso. Starting his Junior Year, he contributed to the program’s first winning season since 1970. As a senior, he earned ALL-WAC honors and helped his team become the winningest in school history with 10 wins.

Tolbert was drafted 85th overall in the 4th round of the 1989 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys. He fell in the draft due to being too slow to play linebacker but also too light to play defensive end. He converted into a defensive end during his rookie year and even started 5 games over Ed “Too Tall” Jones. Tolbert eventually got the starting position in 1991 and held it until 1998 when he was released due to declining performance due to chronic knee pains.

Tony Tolbert played an important role in the Cowboy’s rise to prominence in the 90’s and during their three Super Bowl victories. Over his career he recorded 59 sacks and 1 pick-six in 9 seasons. He had more sacks in the 90’s than any other Cowboys player.


Tony Tolbert: a 90’s defensive legend.



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