Friday, June 24, 2016

1977 Profile: Dan Jilek

No. 51
"This guy makes you wonder about the Bills' scouting department. The Bills have blown some first- and second-round draft choices on linebacking mistakes the past few years, but got a good one when they stumbled onto Jilek in the fourth round a year ago. Buffalo's most pleasant surprise of 1976, he made the mistakes you would expect from a rookie linebacker, but could become an excellent one. He's an opportunistic player, although more weight would help.
A defensive end at Michigan and twice an All-Big Ten choice, Jilek still has a lot to learn about his new position. He was the second-busiest Bill defender last year with 60 tackles and 39 assists and intercepted two passes.
Jilek was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. His father is a high school football coach in Detroit."

-Rich Kucner, The Complete Handbook of Pro Football, 1977 Edition

"Jilek started all 14 games at outside linebacker in 1976 and earned a berth on the NFL All-Rookie team. He was the second leading tackler on the squad with 60 solos and 39 assists, and had two pass interceptions, two fumble recoveries and a sack. Dan moved into the starting lineup midway through training camp and continued to improve all year.
He has excellent reactions with an instinct for the ball and could develop into a top NFL linebacker.
Jilek was a two-time All-Big Ten selection of both AP and UPI at defensive end. An honorable mention All-America, he played in the Hula Bowl and the Japan Bowl and was a candidate for Academic All-America honors. Dan ranked sixth on the Michigan squad last year with 99 tackles, including 70 solo stops, and also had a pass interception. He was involved in 80 tackles as a junior, including 10 for losses of 53 yards.
A speech and political science major, Dan's father is the football and basketball coach at Henry Ford High School in Detroit."

-Buffalo Bills 1977 Press-TV-Radio Guide

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