Ritcher, Jim

Card: Fleer Ultra 1993
Acquired: Canton Acquisition, 2012

A so well-regarded center coming out of college in 1980, the Buffalo Bills drafted Jim Ritcher in the first round out of NC State. It almost didn’t come to pass, but coach Lou Holtz at the time had the ‘veer’ offense, which required an extremely mobile center. Ritcher was signed by the college to play defense, and had to make the adjustment (- never having played even on the offensive line during high school,) but by the end of his senior season in 1979, he’d win the Outland Trophy for being college’s best lineman.

The Bills liked him at guard so he moved there and Jim became a fixture for the team blocking up front for great backs like Joe Cribbs and Thurman Thomas. It took a while for the Bills to get to a point where they’d contend again, and after some some really lean years Ritcher was the last Bill standing from the original 1980 team when the team reached its first of 4 Superbowl appearances in 1990. By this time the offensive line consisted of Wolford, Hull, Davis, and Ballard- an impressive group. In 1991 and 1992 he’d be honored with Pro Bowl nominations and played for the franchise through 1993. ┬áRitcher moved to Atlanta and finished his career there after the 1995 season.