YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Have you ever wondered how many NFL players born in our area have had the chance to hoist the Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy?
According to Pro Football Reference, 23 locally-born NFL players have suited up for the Big Game.
Youngstown-area natives have won the Super Bowl in five consecutive decades. As it turns out, one local player on the Kansas City Chiefs could get his first ring this Sunday.
Do you recognize some of these names from Mahoning, Trumbull, Columbiana, Mercer and Lawrence counties?
Dan Benish: A Hubbard High School and Clemson University graduate, Benish was born in Youngstown. In 55 games in his five-year career, he recorded 7.5 sacks. He played four seasons in Atlanta before winning a Super Bowl ring with Washington in 1988.
Ross Browner: The Warren native made his mark early in the NFL after his playing days at Notre Dame. After being drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the first round in 1978, he was named second in the 1978 AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year voting. The defensive end played nine seasons with the Bengals and one with the Packers, but he failed to win a Super Bowl in 1982 against the 49ers. Browner died in January 2022.
Matt Cavanaugh: Over the course of his NFL playing career, Cavanaugh played quarterback for four different teams (Patriots, Eagles, 49ers, and Giants). The Chaney native won two Super Bowls: one with the 49ers (1985) and one with the Giants (1991). He finished with 4,332 passing yards and 28 touchdowns. He has been an offensive assistant coach with the New York Jets since 2021.
David Givens: The Youngstown-born wide receiver played college football at Notre Dame before he was drafted by the Patriots in the seventh round of the 2002 NFL Draft. In 58 career games with the Patriots and Titans, Givens finished with 2,318 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. Givens won two rings in New England in from 2004-2005 while Tom Brady was his quarterback.
Randy Gradishar: The Warren native was an accomplished linebacker in his nine seasons with the Denver Broncos. Gradishar qualified for the Pro Bowl in seven of those seasons and finished as an AP First-Team All-Pro from 1977-1978. The Champion graduate and former Ohio State Buckeye lost to the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XII in 1978.
Troy Hill: The Youngstown-born defensive back first entered the league as a member of the Bengals before signing with the Los Angeles Rams in 2016. Hill and the Rams went on to lose to the Patriots in the Super Bowl in 2019. Hill signed with the Cleveland Browns in 2021 before he returned to the Rams in 2022. He finished with 67 tackles and one interception in 12 games this past season.
Marlin Jackson: The Sharon defensive back was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft. Jackson finished with 291 tackles and four interceptions over five seasons. He won one ring with the Colts in 2007, but he lost his opportunity to win a second title against the New Orleans Saints in 2010.
Rich Karlis: A kicker from Salem, Karlis played nine seasons in the NFL. Karis and the Denver Broncos did not beat the Giants and win the Super Bowl in 1987. However, he did lead the NFL in field goals made (31) in 1989 with the Minnesota Vikings. Karis made 61 of 68 field goal attempts in his career with the Broncos, Vikings, and Lions.
Darian Kinnard: This Youngstown-born rookie is the youngest player on this list at 23 years old. Kinnard was selected by the Kansas City Chiefs as the 145th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. The offensive tackle has played in one game this season, which was a 30-29 win over the Las Vegas Raiders on October 10. Will Kinnard and the Chiefs win on Sunday? It remains to be seen.
Bernie Kosar: A Boardman High School product, Kosar threw for over 21,900 yards when he was a longtime star of the Cleveland Browns. In 1993, after seven games played, former Browns head coach and current Patriots coach Bill Belichick cut the QB after he lost playing time to Mike Tomczak. Later that season, Kosar went on to win a championship as a backup with the Dallas Cowboys. After that season, he played three seasons with the Miami Dolphins before retiring.
Mario Manningham: The Warren G. Harding standout played six seasons in the NFL. Manningham won a title with the New York Giants in 2012. He came out on the losing end the following season with the San Francisco 49ers. The wide receiver finished with 2,849 and 19 touchdowns in his career.
Anthony Mitchell: The Youngstown-born defensive back won a championship at the conclusion of his rookie season with the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV in 2001. He also played for the Jaguars and Bengals during his five years in the NFL. Mitchell finished with 160 tackles and 3 interceptions in his career.
Ed Muransky: The Cardinal Mooney graduate played at the University of Michigan before he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders as an offensive tackle in the 1982 NFL Draft. Muransky won a ring in Super Bowl XVIII in 1984. He is now the CEO of Surgical Hospital at Southwoods in Boardman. He is also the founder, chairman and CEO of Chestnut Land Company, the holding company for Auntie Anne’s Soft Pretzel franchises.
Jerry Olsavsky: A Youngstown native and Chaney graduate, Olsavsky played for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens during his decade-long career. Olsavsky and the Steelers lost to the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XXX in 1996. The linebacker finished with 232 tackles, 2.5 sacks, one interception and four forced fumbles.
Rick Razzano: A teammate of Ross Browner, Razzano was a native of New Castle. Razzano and the Bengals came up short in the Super Bowl in 1982. The linebacker finished with one interception and four fumble recoveries in five seasons in Cincinnati.
John Simon: A standout at Cardinal Mooney, Simon was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the 2013 NFL Draft. After stints in Baltimore, Houston and Indianapolis, he won a Super Bowl with the New England Patriots in 2019. Simon played two more seasons in New England before signing with the Titans in 2021. In 2022, he signed a futures deal with the Steelers.
Anthony Smith: A Hubbard High School graduate, Smith won a Super Bowl ring with the Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII in 2009. While on injured reserve, he won another title with the Green Bay Packers in 2011. He also was a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars and St. Louis Rams in his six-year career. Smith finished with 181 tackles and seven interceptions.
Jason Spitz: The Boardman-born offensive guard was teammates with fellow Packers Super Bowl champion and Valley native Anthony Smith. Spitz started in 45 of his 75 career games in the NFL. He was a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars in his final season.
Danny Trevathan: The Youngstown-born linebacker lost his first opportunity at a title in 2014, but he and the Broncos redeemed themselves in 2016 when they beat the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50. During his 10-year career with the Broncos and Bears, he had 741 tackles, 10 sacks, eight interceptions and seven forced fumbles.
Steve Vallos: The Boardman High School graduate was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the seventh round of the 2008 NFL Draft. Vallos started in nine of his 59 career NFL games with the Seahawks, Browns, Jaguars, Eagles and Broncos. Vallos and the Broncos lost to the Seahawks in the Super Bowl before he retired.
Paul Warfield: The Warren G. Harding graduate and former Ohio State Buckeye is the only member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame on this list. In his time with the Cleveland Browns and Miami Dolphins, he qualified for the Pro Bowl eight times, finished as a First-Team AP All-Pro twice, and led the league in receiving touchdowns twice. Even though Warfield and the Dolphins lost their first Super Bowl appearance, they went undefeated in the following year in the 1972 season. Warfield and the Dolphins repeated as champions the next year.
Jeff Wilkins: The former Austintown graduate and YSU Penguin had two opportunities at the Super Bowl in his career. Wilkins and the Rams beat the Titans in 2000, but they lost to the Patriots in 2002. Wilkins finished with an 81.9% field goal percentage in 200 games with the Eagles, 49ers and Rams.
Derek Wolfe: The Beaver Local standout made the most of his second Super Bowl appearance with the Broncos, helping Denver win Super Bowl 50. Wolfe played eight seasons in Denver before joining the Ravens for one season. Wolfe retired from the NFL in July 2022. Wolfe finished with 350 tackles and 34 sacks in his career.
The kick-off of Super Bowl LVII between the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles is at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, February 12 on Fox Youngstown (WYFX).