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This Birthday in Buffalo Sports History: Tony Hunter

     (Born May 22, 1960) --  A few names come up with a discussion begins about the greatest tight ends in the history of the Buffalo Bills. Back in 1983, we probably would have guessed that the discussion would have started and ended with Tony Hunter.

     Notre Dame has spotlight Hunter's talents during a great career in South Bend, Indiana. He had impressive size and speed, and was considered a sure bet for professional stardom. It was a happy day for Bills' fans, then, when Hunter fell to Buffalo with the 12th pick in the first round of the draft. By the way, that was two picks before the Bills took Jim Kelly.

     Hunter worked his way into the lineup as a rookie, catching 36 passes. The number went to 33 the following season, but he was still considered a big-time talent.

     That's what made it so surprising when he was traded. Hunter went to the Rams in a deal that brought Vince Ferragamo here. Hunter only lasted two years with the Rams and was out of football after the 1986 season.

     The final career numbers: 134 catches in 47 games and nine touchdowns.

--- Budd Bailey

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