One of the most famous names in Raiders History Jack Tatum died from a heart attack on 27th July 2010 age just 61. Actually christened John David Tatum, he played Safety for the Oakland Raiders for most of his career which spanned 1971-1980. His ultra hard hitting style gained him the nickname “The Assassin” and he will probably be best remembered for his unfortunate involvement in the “Immaculate reception” which remains one of the NFL’s most famous play off incidents.
His playing career began at college where as a member of the Ohio State Buckeyes he had a 27-2 record as a starter and this led to him being drafted in the first round. He managed 30 interceptions in the Raiders shirt and gained a Super Bowl Winners Ring in Super Bowl XI when the Raiders beat The Minnesota Vikings 32-14.
The blackest moment of his career came in 1978 when one of his trademark tackles left New England Wide Receiver Darryl Stingley paralyzed a tackle he reportedly refused to apologise for claiming it was a clean tackle.
Despite making 3 Pro Bowls Jack Tatum has so far not made it into the NFL Hall of Fame, although he might still be elected posthumously.
Jack Tatum suffered from Diabetes latter in life and went on to set up a fund to research into the disease so although he may not have been the best loved of NFL players he did attempt to do some good in the world after his football career ended.
Anyone interested in learning more about his career can check out his books which were all best sellers:-
They Call Me Assassin from 1980
They Still Call Me Assassin from 1989
Final Confessions of NFL Assassin Jack Tatum from 1996