LA Rams: 15 greatest wide receivers of All Time
It’s really hard to imagine the fact that someone who could make a Top-15 list would be undrafted, but that is indeed the story for LA Rams wide receiver Preston Dennard. After all, he played in the late 1970s, at a time when the rules did not protect defenseless players. So when the 6-foot-1 178-pound wide receiver Preston Dennard failed to hear his name in the 1978 NFL Draft, it was not because anyone doubted whether he could catch the ball in the NFL.
It was about doubting his ability to endure a big ole NFL tackle after he did.
"“Harold Daniels was my agent, and after that last pick, I got frustrated and went for a walk,” Dennard said. “When I got back, Harold said eight teams called (about signing as a free agent), but we’re going to go to L.A. and we’re going to sign a contract with them. So I went out there and met (the Rams’ scout) Jack Faulkner and (general manager) Don Klosterman, and I got what was considered the first free agent signing bonus, $1,500.” – as per Jim Gehman of therams.com"
Even as early as 1978, the LA Rams made a name for themselves via signing undrafted free agent rookies? That’s interesting.
Standing 6-foot-1 and weighing 185-pounds (he muscled up as a Rams player) is not uncommon for the modern-day wide receiver, but in the late 70s, it was not as common as you might think. Wide receivers were not the skyscrapers of the modern era. They hovered between 5-foot-10 and 6-foot-0 and had a bit more muscle mass. They were far more active in run blocking and run support then, and a more muscular frame helped them move defenders off the line of scrimmage.
He is now the Director of Sales and Marketing for Sports Surfacing Distributing Inc. and now lives with his wife Angela in Alberquerque, New Mexico.
Sports was not only his childhood athletic outlet, but it was the participation and observation of the excitement in football that helped him to overcome a childhood speech impediment – stuttering.
Preston Dennard is putting the finishing touches to his autobiography – A Walk in my Shoes, which should find its way into the home libraries of all Rams fans. He starts this list at 15.