Robert Meachem
refer to caption
Meachem with the Saints in 2009
No. 12, 17
Position:Wide receiver
Personal information
Born: (1984-09-28) September 28, 1984 (age 38)
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
High school:Booker T. Washington
(Tulsa, Oklahoma)
College:Tennessee (2003–2006)
NFL Draft:2007 / Round: 1 / Pick: 27
Career history
As a player:
As a coach:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Receiving yards:2,914
Receiving touchdowns:27
Player stats at

Robert Emery Meachem[1] (born September 28, 1984) is a former American football wide receiver. He played college football at Tennessee and was drafted by the New Orleans Saints 27th overall in the 2007 NFL draft. Meachem also played one season with the San Diego Chargers.

Early years

Raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Meachem played football in elementary school for the "Mabee Babies" of The Salvation Army North Mabee Boys & Girls Club.[2] He won a national basketball title in the summer after eighth grade with his AAU team, the Tulsa Jammers. He later attended Booker T. Washington High School, where he was a teammate of future NFL players Felix Jones and Mark Anderson, and was named a high school All-American by Parade and SuperPrep reporting services. Meachem was also a point guard on his high school basketball team, which won back to back state titles in 2001 and 2002.[3]

College career

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Meachem attended the University of Tennessee, arriving in 2003. He was part of a heralded recruiting class with receivers Jayson Swain and Bret Smith. Meachem, however, redshirted the 2003 season after suffering a knee injury in preseason practice.

Meachem caught 25 passes for 459 in 2004 as a redshirt freshman. He returned to play in all 13 games (no starts) and led the team with 459 yards on 25 catches (18.4 average) and four touchdowns. Meachem was the only Vols receiver with 100 yards in a game that year. Meachem's first career reception occurred in the game against UNLV, which was a 35-yard touchdown.

Meachem appeared in all 11 games in 2005, with two starts, and again led the team in receiving yards with 383 on 29 catches (13.2 average) and two touchdowns.

2006 was Meachem's breakout year. Along with David Cutcliffe's return to Tennessee as offensive coordinator in 2006, Meachem, Swain and quarterback Erik Ainge all turned in career seasons. In the November 25 game against Kentucky, Meachem had 116 receiving yards, pushing his total to a new school record of 1265 yards in a single season. Meachem also totaled 11 scores, a career best. He also had six 100-yard games that season. He ranked fourth in the nation with an average of 99.85 yards per game receiving and ranked 24th nationally with 5.46 receptions per game. He led the team with a career-high 71 catches for a school single-season record 1,298 yards (18.3 avg) to lead the SEC, including 11 touchdowns. He recorded two solo tackles, gained 16 yards on a kickoff return and 12 yards on a punt return. In 37 games at Tennessee, Meachem started 15 times. He caught 125 passes and became the sixth player in school history to gain more than 2,000 yards receiving, totaling 2,140 yards (17.1 avg) with 17 touchdowns. All this earned him an all SEC, consensus All-American selections. Meachem decided to forgo his senior season and enter the 2007 NFL Draft.

Professional career

2007 NFL Combine

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight 40-yard dash 10-yard split 20-yard split 20-yard shuttle Three-cone drill Vertical jump Broad jump
6 ft 2 in
(1.88 m)
214 lb
(97 kg)
4.39 s 1.51 s 2.49 s 4.19 s 6.97 s 3712 10 ft 8 in
(3.25 m)
All values taken from NFL Scouting Combine[4]

New Orleans Saints (first stint)

With the 27th pick of the 2007 NFL Draft, Meachem was selected by the New Orleans Saints. Meachem signed a five-year deal worth $11.3 million in base salary and incentives with $5.71 million guaranteed.[5] However, Meachem underwent knee surgery and was unable to play in his rookie season.

Meachem was once again inactive for the Saints' opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2008. On September 14, 2008, Meachem caught his first pass in the NFL, a 19-yard touchdown pass against the Washington Redskins.[6]

Meachem at the Saints' Super Bowl XLIV victory parade in Downtown New Orleans
Meachem at the Saints' Super Bowl XLIV victory parade in Downtown New Orleans

In week 4 against the San Francisco 49ers, Meachem got the chance to see more game time when number 1 receiver Marques Colston was sidelined with a broken thumb. In this game, Meachem had only 2 receptions, his first a 47-yard touchdown grab, his second a 52-yard flea flicker catch with a defender draped all over him. Meachem ended week 4 with 2 receptions for 99 yards and the Saints got the win over the 49ers. Meachem finished the season with 12 receptions for 289 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also had a 24.1 yards per catch.

On December 6, 2009, after Kareem Moore of the Washington Redskins intercepted Drew Brees, Meachem tore the ball out of Moore's grasp and ran it for a touchdown. In the same game, Meachem caught a 53-yard touchdown pass with 1:19 left in regulation, tying the game at 30. The Saints won, 33–30, in overtime to improve to 12–0.[7] The 2009 Saints went on to win the Super Bowl.

Meachem remained with the Saints through the 2011 season. During his five years with the team he had 141 regular-season catches for 2,269 yards and 23 touchdowns; he also played in six playoff games and had 14 receptions for 184 yards and a touchdown.[8]

San Diego Chargers

On March 13, 2012, Meachem signed a four-year contract with the San Diego Chargers worth $25.5 million including a $7.5 million signing bonus.[9][10] He was part of the Chargers' plan to replace Pro Bowl receiver Vincent Jackson, who left the team as a free agent. Meachem caught two touchdowns in a 2012 matchup with New Orleans, but he dropped a potential touchdown in a 7–6 loss to the Cleveland Browns.[10] His time with the Chargers was disappointing, as he underperformed the high expectations reflected in his large contract, and was compared to a previous Chargers free agent "bust", David Boston. Kevin Acee of UT-San Diego called him "the worst free agent acquisition in the history of the Chargers".[11] On September 1, 2013, the Chargers released Meachem during final roster cuts, even though they had guaranteed him $5 million for the upcoming 2013 season.[12]

New Orleans Saints (second stint)

On September 3, 2013, Meachem signed a one-year contract to return to the New Orleans Saints.[8] In the 2013 season, he recorded 16 receptions, 324 yards, and 2 touchdowns. The Saints signed him to another one-year contract on April 18, 2014.[13] Meachem was among the last cuts made by the Saints before the 2014 season. However, a few days later, he re-signed with the team, on September 3, 2014, after rookie Khairi Fortt was placed on short-term injured reserve.[14] His contract expired after the 2014 season and he did not re-sign, making him a free agent. He missed the entire 2015 season as a free agent.

On June 14, 2016, he tried out for the Saints at minicamp wearing the number 12 on his jersey. It was last worn by Marques Colston for 10 years. The tryout was put on hold the following day as Meachem had a foot injury and didn't practice.[15]

Richmond Roughriders

Meachem signed with the Richmond Roughriders in 2018.[16]

NFL statistics

Year Team Games Receptions Targets Yards Yards per reception Longest reception Touchdowns First downs Fumbles Fumbles lost
2008 NO 14 12 20 289 24.1 74 3 8 0 0
2009 NO 16 45 64 722 16.0 54 9 30 2 1
2010 NO 16 44 66 638 14.5 55 5 27 0 0
2011 NO 16 40 61 620 15.5 67 6 29 0 0
2012 SD 15 14 32 207 14.8 46 2 8 0 0
2013 NO 15 16 30 324 20.3 60 2 9 0 0
2014 NO 11 7 20 114 16.3 25 0 7 0 0
Career 103 178 293 2,914 16.4 74 27 118 2 1


Off-field life

Meachem was a contestant on NBC's Minute to Win It in an online exclusive episode playing to win money for the Boys and Girls Club of Greater New Orleans.[18]

Meantime created the Robert Emery Meachem Follow Your Dreams Foundation to help American youth. Its first goal is to supply books to at least 200 kids ages 4 to 17 in north Tulsa.[19]

On February 14, 2017, Meachem was jailed for 30 days for having more than $400,000 in unpaid child support.[20]

In 2018, Meachem was a player in Your Call Football, an interactive game where in real time, participants call plays live for players which include former professional football players.[21][22]


  1. ^ "Robert Meachem NFL Football Statistics". September 28, 1984. Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  2. ^ "'Mabee Babies' turn out super". Tulsa World. Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  3. ^ "Farm served as sanctuary for WR prospect". ESPN. March 12, 2007. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
  4. ^ " - Prospect Profiles". June 11, 2007. Archived from the original on June 11, 2007. Retrieved July 26, 2017.
  5. ^ Dubenetzky, Jim (July 24, 2007). "Meachem signs five-year deal with Saints". Retrieved April 18, 2014.
  6. ^ "Robert Meachem Fantasy - FantasySP".
  7. ^ "NASCAR". Sporting News. September 5, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  8. ^ a b "New Orleans Saints sign WR Robert Meachem to a one-year contract". September 3, 2013. Retrieved September 3, 2013.
  9. ^ "Former Saints WR Meachem agrees to four-year Chargers deal".
  10. ^ a b Gehlken, Michael (November 26, 2012). "Robert Meachem reaches new low". U-T San Diego. Archived from the original on November 26, 2012.
  11. ^ Acee, Kevin (August 29, 2013). "Meachem story: no start, finished early". U-T San Diego. Retrieved September 3, 2013.
  12. ^ "Chargers release Robert Meachem". Associated Press at September 1, 2013. Retrieved September 3, 2013.
  13. ^ Marc Sessler, "Robert Meachem re-signs with New Orleans Saints",, April 18, 2014.
  14. ^ "New Orleans Saints re-sign WR Robert Meachem", WWL-TV, September 3, 2014.
  15. ^ Katherine Terrell, "Robert Meachem doesn't practice Wednesday with foot issue; tryout still ongoing", The Times-Picayune, June 15, 2016.
  16. ^ "Meachem Catching Fire Just In Time For AAL Playoffs". Richmond Roughriders. June 6, 2018. Archived from the original on June 13, 2018. Retrieved June 12, 2018.
  17. ^ "Robert Meachem Stats". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved May 22, 2014.
  18. ^ "Breaking News - NBC's 'Minute to Win It' to Air Special NFL Themed Episodes September 7 & 8 Leading Up to NBC's NFL Kickoff on September 9". August 19, 2010. Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  19. ^ Eaton, Kristin and Anna Holton Dean. "Robert Meachem." Tulsa People. March 2019. Accessed March 22, 2019.
  20. ^ "Former Saints WR Robert Meachem jailed over unpaid child support, alimony". Sporting News. February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  21. ^ "Humphries part of 'real-life Madden' league". Montgomery Advertiser. Montgomery Advertiser. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
  22. ^ "Former Coastal Carolina All-American joins another Canadian Football League team". Myrtle Beach Sun News. Myrtle Beach Sun News. Retrieved October 31, 2018.