Ring of Honor member Rayfield Wright. Photo taken Dec. 20, 2008.
Okay Zack Martin, the bar is set at Rayfield Wright. Ready. Set. Hall of Fame?
Probably a smidge premature to be setting such lofty goals for the Cowboys’ first-round draft pick, but the offensive lineman from Notre Dame already has something in common with Wright:
To be fair, '81 first-round pick (bust?) Howard Richards also wore that uniform number. So maybe Martin, for now, should be more realistic and shoot for being the second-best No. 70 in franchise history.
A look at the Cowboys’ draft choices, their new jersey numbers and the footprints they have to follow:
Zack Martin, No. 70 – If he even flirts with Rayfield Wright’s Canton legacy he’ll be a shrewd, splendid choice.
Demarcus Lawrence, No. 90 – Instead of DeMarcus Ware’s impossible No. 94, he’ll attempt instead to fill Jay Ratliff’s jersey.
Anthony Hitchens, No. 59 – Darrin Smith started at linebacker on a No. 1 defense and won two Super Bowl rings. Good luck.
Devin Street, No. 15 – Forgettable ‘80s receiver Cornell Burbage and future TV sports anchor Babe Laufenberg also wore the number, but since the ‘70s it’s belonged to kicker Toni Fritsch.
Ben Gardner, No. 71 – People forget just how dominant an offensive lineman Mark Tuinei was.
Will Smith, No. 40 – If he has half of Bill Bates’ tenacity he’ll at least make the roster.
Ahmad Dixon, No. 36 – Vince Albritton wore the number as an underwhelming 1980s safety, but it – by default – is owned by '70s backup running back Larry Brinson.
Ken Bishop, No. 66 – George Andrie was one of the lesser-known, most underrated members of the Cowboys’ original Doomsday Defense in the late '60s/early ‘70s.
Terrance Mitchell, No. 30 – Dan Reeves blocked, ran, caught – and threw – passes, won two Super Bowls as a player and coached (as an assistant and head coach) in seven more. Top that, 7th-rounder.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.