Bruce Davis
No. 79, 77
Position:Offensive tackle
Personal information
Born:(1956-06-21)June 21, 1956
Rutherfordton, North Carolina, U.S.
Died:December 25, 2021(2021-12-25) (aged 65)
Houston, Texas, U.S.
Height:6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Weight:287 lb (130 kg)
Career information
High school:Lackey
(Indian Head, Maryland)
NFL draft:1979 / Round: 11 / Pick: 294
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:160
Games started:115
Player stats at · PFR

Bruce Edward Davis (June 21, 1956 – December 25, 2021) was an American professional football player who was an offensive tackle in the National Football League (NFL) for 11 seasons with the Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders and the Houston Oilers. He played college football for the UCLA Bruins, switching to the offensive line after beginning his collegiate career as a defensive tackle. He won two Super Bowls with the Raiders.


Davis attended the University of California, Los Angeles,[1] and began his collegiate career with the Bruins as a defensive tackle. He moved to offensive tackle as a senior after the offensive line was beset with injuries.[2]

Davis was selected by the Oakland Raiders in the 11th round of the 1979 NFL Draft, his low position due to his limited time as an offensive lineman.[2] Raiders' owner Al Davis admired his lower-body strength.[3] Mentored out of college by the Raiders' Art Shell,[2] Bruce Davis became a full-time starter at left tackle by 1982, when he supplanted Shell.[3][4] Davis won two Super Bowls with the Raiders (XV in 1981, XVIII in 1984), and teammates voted him the team's best offensive lineman in 1985.[5]

In 1987, Davis was traded mid-season to the Houston Oilers, who were 5–2 and contending for the playoffs.[5] He played in 43 consecutive games for the Oilers until he was released after the 1989 season. He had been holding out, seeking a new contract after making $435,000 in the past season. He had arthroscopic surgery on both knees that offseason and fell to third on the depth chart at left tackle behind Don Maggs and David Williams.[6] Davis re-signed with the Raiders prior to the 1990 exhibition season,[7] but he was released before the regular-season opener.[8] He ended his 11-year career with 160 games played and 115 starts.[9][10][11]

Personal life

Davis was born on June 21, 1956, in Rutherfordton, North Carolina, and graduated from Henry E. Lackey High School in Indian Head, Maryland.[9][12] After his playing career, he became a high school history and geography teacher.[13]

Davis's son Bruce II also attended UCLA and was an All-American at defensive end with the Bruins,[13] and played professionally as well for the Oakland Raiders.[14] They are one of the few father–son combos to have played on teams that reached the Super Bowl; Bruce II was a linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers squad that advanced to Super Bowl XLIII.[15][16]

Davis died on December 25, 2021, in Houston, Texas,[17][18] at the age of 65.[10][11]


  1. ^ Foster, Chris (December 21, 2007). "Their friendship passes screen test". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 27, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c Baker, Chris (August 9, 1990). "Davis on Program to Tackle Weighty Issue". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  3. ^ a b King, Peter (September 2, 1991). "Battle of the Bulge". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  4. ^ "Gene Upshaw and Art Shell, two of the finest..." United Press International. December 24, 1982. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Heisler, Mark (November 4, 1987). "Raiders Trade Davis to Oilers for Draft Pick". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  6. ^ "Oilers release Bruce Davis, sign draft pick Alm". United Press International. July 27, 1990. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  7. ^ "SIDELINES : Raiders Sign Up Tackle Davis". Los Angeles Times. July 31, 1990. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  8. ^ "Raiders to sign Beuerlein, cut 10 players". United Press International. September 3, 1990. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  9. ^ a b "Bruce Davis Stats". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved December 29, 2021.
  10. ^ a b "Raiders Family mourns passing of Bruce Davis". Las Vegas Raiders. December 27, 2021. Retrieved December 29, 2021.
  11. ^ a b Williams, Charean (December 27, 2021). "Former Raiders left tackle Bruce Davis dies at 65". NBC Sports. Retrieved December 27, 2021.
  12. ^ "Lowering of the Flag: Bruce Davis". Charles County, Maryland. December 28, 2021. Retrieved December 29, 2021.
  13. ^ a b Borges, Ron (December 24, 2009). "A unique family business". Boston Herald. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  14. ^ "Reality of Al Davis' death hits Raiders". Nevada Appeal. Associated Press. October 12, 2011. Retrieved December 28, 2021.
  15. ^ Kendle, Joe (June 16, 2019). "Father's Day on the big stage". Canton Repository. Retrieved December 30, 2021.
  16. ^ "Davises and Super Bowls". The Orange County Register. January 23, 2009. Retrieved December 30, 2021.
  17. ^ "Bruce Davis". Houston Chronicle. January 6, 2022. Retrieved January 13, 2022.
  18. ^ "Bruce Davis". McCoy & Harrison Funeral Home. Retrieved January 9, 2021.