Sammy Winder
Sammy Winder was born on July 15, 1959 in Madison, Mississippi. He is a former NFL running back who spent his entire professional career playing for the Denver Broncos, from 1982 to 1990. The Denver Broncos drafted Winder in the 5th round of the 1982 NFL Draft out of Southern Mississippi.

Sammy Winder #23

Player Info

Height 5' 11"
Weight 203 lbs
DOB: 7/15/1959
Running Back


NFL Draft

1982/Round 5/Pick 131

Career Highlights

Pro Bowls 1984, 1986

Team(s) As A Player

Denver Broncos 1982-1990

Winder's Steady Approach

Sammy Winder was never a spectacular runner. However, he gave you everything he had, grinding out 3 or 4 yards at a time. Winder kept the chains moving for first downs. In fact, over his 9-year career, he never averaged over 4 yards per carry for a season. Despite that, he was consistent enough to become Denver’s second all-time leading rusher when he retired.

Sammy Winder Reaches Pro Bowl

Sammy Winder had two fine seasons in the Broncos’ uniform. In 1984 Winder rushed for 1153 yards and scored 4 TDs on the ground. He added 44 catches for 288 yards and two more TDs. He was voted to the Pro Bowl for the first time during his only 1000-yard season.

In 1986, Winder found another way to get to the Pro Bowl. This time he did it by scoring 14 touchdowns, 9 of them on the ground. He also added 960 yards from scrimmage.

AFC Championship Game

January 14, 1990, the Denver Broncos hosted the Cleveland Browns in the AFC Championship game. It was the 3rd time in four seasons they played for the right to go to the Super Bowl. In the first half, starting running back Bobby Humphrey broke two ribs. Winder was called upon to step in and step up. In the 3rd quarter, Winder broke off a 7-yard touchdown run to give Denver a 24-7 lead. After the Browns had cut the score to 24-21, Winder caught a 39-yard touchdown from John Elway early in the 4th quarter to help seal the victory. The Broncos went on to win 37-21 to advance to the Super Bowl.

Sammy Winder's Final Game

1990 was Winder’s last season in the NFL. He had been relegated to bench duty all season. The Broncos were 4-11 and were out of the playoffs so Dan Reeves gave Winder the start, knowing it would be his last game. Sammy Winder came through with 80 yards on just 15 carries to help the Broncos to a 22-13 victory. It is always nice to win the last game you play in.

Winder's Career Ends

Winder was a two-time Pro Bowl selection (1984 and 1986), and was a key player for the Broncos during the 1980s assisting them to three Super Bowl appearances. In his 9 seasons, Winder rushed for 5,427 yards and 39 touchdowns, while also catching 197 passes for 1,302 yards and 9 touchdowns. He was known for a signature touchdown celebration that he called the “Mississippi Mud Walk.” After the 1990 season, Sammy Winder announced his retirement.

By A. Goodin,
November 3, 2007

External Sammy Winder Links

Sammy Winder Article
Sammy Winder Career Stats
Winder in Broncos-Seahawks Flashback 1985

Related Links