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Eric Joseph Winston (born November 17, 1983) is an American football offensive tackle who is currently a free agent. He played in college at the University of Miami and was drafted by the Houston Texans in the third round of the 2006 NFL Draft. Winston has also played for the Kansas City Chiefs, Arizona Cardinals, and Cincinnati Bengals. He is the current president of the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA).

Eric Winston
refer to caption
Winston with the Bengals in 2017.
Free agent
Position:Offensive tackle
Personal information
Born: (1983-11-17) November 17, 1983 (age 36)
Midland, Texas
Height:6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Weight:302 lb (137 kg)
Career information
High school:Midland (TX) Lee
College:Miami (FL)
NFL Draft:2006 / Round: 3 / Pick: 66
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:165
Games started:127
Player stats at

Early yearsEdit

Winston played high school football at Robert E. Lee High School in Midland, Texas, where he was ranked amongst the most talented high school tight ends in the country. He played alongside fellow NFL running back Cedric Benson, and the two helped win three Texas 5A state championships. [1]

College careerEdit

Winston chose to attend college at the University of Miami after being heavily recruited by several other schools. At Miami, Winston majored in International Finance and Marketing and played offensive tackle. He initially was set to play tight end for the Hurricanes, but made the switch before his sophomore year. Winston was widely considered one of the best offensive tackles to enter the 2006 NFL Draft. However, an anterior cruciate ligament injury during his junior year made his draft stock drop, and several draft scouting organizations expressed slight worry over the possible implications of the injury and subsequent surgery on his play.

Winston was also a standout student, graduating in three years with a GPA above 3.5, and he was a 2005 All-America selection. He was a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity.

Professional careerEdit

Houston TexansEdit

Winston was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2006 NFL Draft. He started the final seven games as a rookie at right tackle in 2006 and proceeded to start 87 games for them until 2011.[2] He signed a contract extension prior to the 2008 season. The Texans released him on March 12, 2012.

Kansas City ChiefsEdit

Winston signed with the Kansas City Chiefs on March 17, 2012. On October 7, 2012, Winston spoke out about Kansas City Chiefs fans, who he thought were cheering an injury to quarterback Matt Cassel. No video evidence has ever been produced to support Winston's claim. In a post game interview, he claimed "this isn't the Roman Colosseum" and "it is hard economic times". He mentioned that he came to the understanding he probably won't live as long because he plays this game, but cheering over a player getting knocked out is "100% sickening".[3] He was released by the Chiefs on March 6, 2013.

Arizona CardinalsEdit

Winston with the Arizona Cardinals in 2013

Winston signed a one-year contract with the Arizona Cardinals on July 25, 2013.[4]

Seattle SeahawksEdit

Winston signed a one-year contract with the Seattle Seahawks on July 29, 2014.[5] Winston failed to make the final 53-man roster, and was released on August 30, 2014.

Cincinnati BengalsEdit

Winston signed a one-year contract with the Cincinnati Bengals on December 2, 2014.[6]

On March 9, 2016, the Bengals re-signed Winston to a one-year, $1.09 million contract.[7]

On March 10, 2017, the Bengals re-signed Winston to his third consecutive one-year contract.[8] He was released on September 2, 2017.[9] He was re-signed by the Bengals on November 8, 2017 after Jake Fisher went down with an illness.[10]

NFL Players AssociationEdit

In March 2014, Winston was elected president of the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA), succeeding Domonique Foxworth.[11] Prior to being elected president, Winston had been involved with the NFLPA in other capacities, including being elected as a co-alternate NFLPA representative for the Houston Texans in 2010 and serving on committees for agent discipline and finance.[12][13][14] He was also vocal during the 2011 NFL lockout.[13] Winston has stated that his first priorities for his presidency will be player health and safety, financial literacy, and workplace conditions, especially in the locker room.[15]

Personal lifeEdit

Winston is married,[16] and has two daughters and one son.[17] He also does volunteer work for the Shriners Hospitals for Children.[14]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ "KC Chiefs Eric Winston Rips Fans' Cheering QB Injury". ABC. Retrieved November 13, 2012.
  4. ^ "Cardinals Get Eric Winston, John Abraham". Archived from the original on February 2, 2014. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  5. ^ "Eric Winston signs with Seattle Seahawks".
  6. ^ "Cincinnati Bengals sign NFLPA president Eric Winston".
  7. ^ Harvey, Coley (March 9, 2016). "Source: Bengals re-sign OT Eric Winston, maintain depth on line". Retrieved March 25, 2016.
  8. ^ Alper, Josh (March 10, 2017). "Eric Winston back to Bengals on one-year deal".
  9. ^ Toback, Rebecca (September 2, 2017). "NFL roster cuts 2017: Cincinnati Bengals 53-man roster".
  10. ^ Hobson, Geoff (November 8, 2017). "Winston returns with Fisher sidelined for season".
  11. ^ Josh Katzowitz (March 19, 2014). "NFLPA elects new president Eric Winston". Retrieved May 8, 2014.
  12. ^ Tom Pelissero (March 19, 2014). "Eric Winston elected president of NFL Players Association". USA TODAY Sports. Retrieved May 8, 2014.
  13. ^ a b "Eric Winston elected NFLPA president". Miami Herald. March 19, 2014. Retrieved May 8, 2014.
  14. ^ a b "Veteran tackle Winston elected NFLPA president". Associated Press. Yahoo! Sports. March 19, 2014. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  15. ^ Josh Weinfuss (April 11, 2014). "Winston draws praise as NFLPA president". Retrieved May 8, 2014.
  16. ^ Jenny Winston diary: Visiting West Texas
  17. ^

External linksEdit