|Steve Bartkowski Bio|
Steven Joseph “Steve” Bartkowski was born on November 12, 1952 in Des Moines, Iowa. He is a former National Football League quarterback who played for the Atlanta Falcons from 1975-1985 and the Los Angeles Rams in 1986. Bartkowski was a consensus All-American his senior season in 1974 at the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently on the Falcons’ Board of Directors.
Bartkowski was chosen with the first overall pick in the 1975 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons and was the NFL Rookie of the Year as well as The Sporting News NFC Rookie of the Year in 1975. He was the first client of legendary sports agent Leigh Steinberg.
Early in his career, Bartkowski was hampered by injuries that stunted his growth as an NFL quarterback. He had three knee surgeries amongst other problems including an elbow injury and rib injuries.
Steve Bartkowski Becomes a Christian
According to The Daily Herald on 11-21-1980, Bartkowski was benched in favor of June Jones for the first three games of the 1978 season. Bartkowski said, “That’s when I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior. I put my priorities in order, and football has been more fun since.” That season, Bartkowski led the Falcons to the playoffs with a 9-7 record after his benching.
Bartkowski to Pro Bowl
In 1980, Steve Bartkowski emerged as a Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons. During that season, he threw for 3544 yards, 31 touchdown passes and only 16 interceptions. Bartkowski was selected to his first Pro Bowl.
1981 was another fantastic season for Steve Bartkowski. For the second consecutive season, he threw at least 30 touchdown passes and had 23 interceptions along with 3829 yards to make the Pro Bowl once again.
Bartkowski is one of only six quarterbacks in NFL history who have achieved two consecutive 30-touchdown passing seasons (1980 & 1981) at least one time in their career. The others are Brett Favre, Dan Fouts, Jeff Garcia, Dan Marino and Y.A. Tittle. Bartkowski was selected to the Pro Bowl after both the 1980 and 1981 seasons and was selected Second Team All-NFC following the 1980 campaign.
Steve Bartkowski Wins Passing Title
After a poor 1982 strike-shortened season, Bartkowski rebounded in 1983 having perhaps his best season as a quarterback. In just 14 games played, Steve completed 63.4 percent of his passes for 3167 yards with 22 touchdown passes and only five interceptions. He led the league in passer rating with a 97.6 rating.
Career Games for Bartkowski
During a week seven game in 1980 against the New Orleans Saints, Bartkowski threw a career high four touchdown passes in one game to beat the Saints 41-14.
Again in week seven, this time in 1981, against the St. Louis Cardinals, Bartkowski tied his career best with four touchdown passes.
Week 11 of the 1981 season against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Bartkowski had his career high in passing yards with 416 yards in a losing cause.
Steve Bartkowski Career Stats
In Steve Bartkowski’s career, he has 12 300-yard passing games and is still the Atlanta Falcons’ all-time leading passer with 23470 yards. His career numbers are 1,932 completions in 3,456 attempts for a 55.9% completion rate for 24,124 yards, 156 touchdown passes and 144 interceptions. He also ran 178 times for 239 yards and 11 touchdowns.
By A. Goodin, 20Yardline.com