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Billy Parks

Billy Parks
No. 32, 21, 20
Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1948-01-01)January 1, 1948
Place of birth: Santa Monica, California
Date of death: July 22, 2009(2009-07-22) (aged 61) Hawaii
Career information
College: Long Beach State University
NFL Draft: 1970 / Round: 6 / Pick: 146
Debuted in 1971
Last played in 1975
Career history
Career highlights and awards

Career NFL statistics

William James "Billy" Parks (January 1, 1948 – July 22, 2009) was a professional American football wide receiver in the National Football League. He played five seasons for the San Diego Chargers, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Houston Oilers.

Parks was one of the players (along with running back Mike Montgomery) acquired by the Dallas Cowboys in the August 1, 1972 trade that sent running back Duane Thomas to the San Diego Chargers.[1][2]

Early years

Parks played quarterback at Culver City High School in the mid-1960s but converted to wide receiver at Santa Monica College. He later transferred to Long Beach State University where he became the school's first All-American. He had his best season as a sophomore in 1967 caching 79 passes (second in the nation) for 1294 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was named All-American in 1968 as a junior, but was injured much of his senior year.

Parks holds the school marks for receiving yards in a career (2,919), receiving yards in a game (298, versus UCSB in 1968), yards in a season (1,294 in 1967) and career touchdowns (22). He also recorded 169 career receptions.

In 1986, he was inducted into the Long Beach State University Hall of Fame.

Professional career

San Diego Chargers

Parks was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the 6th round of the 1970 NFL draft, but he sat the entire 1970 season because of injuries. In 1971 as a rookie, he replaced Lance Alworth in the lineup and led the NFL in catches (41 catches) during the first ten games of the season, before being sidelined with a broken arm. He was named to the 1971 NFL All-rookie team.[3]

The Chargers coveted running back Duane Thomas and before the start of the 1972 season, the team traded Parks along with running back Mike Montgomery to the Dallas Cowboys in exchange for him.

Dallas Cowboys

In 1972 he was a backup until the eighth game, when he was promoted to replace Lance Alworth.[4] He would have a disappointing regular season with only 18 receptions, but he was a key player in the come from behind win over the San Francisco 49ers in the playoffs, catching 7 passes for 136 yards and a touchdown, in what turned out to be his best game as a professional.

Parks was traded along with Tody Smith before the start of the 1973 season to the Houston Oilers, in exchange for their first and third round draft picks in the 1974 NFL Draft. For the first time in their history, the Dallas Cowboys had the first overall draft choice which they used to select Ed "Too Tall" Jones. The team used the third round draft choice to select Danny White.

Houston Oilers

During his first season with the Oilers in 1973, he had a career high of 43 catches. He grabbed another 20 passes in 1974, but only caught 1 pass in 10 games in 1975.

Parks retired after the 1975 season having played in the NFL for 5 seasons. He caught 123 passes for 1,826 yards and 7 touchdowns in his career.

Personal life

Parks succumbed to melanoma at age 61 in Hawaii.[5]


External links

  • Long Beach State University Hall of Fame Profile
  • Billy Parks' obituary
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