Willie Buchanon was inducted into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame in 1993.

28 days to Packers football: Willie Buchanon

With 28 days left until the start of the NFL season, our countdown to the big day continues.

Thursday, Sept. 4, is the day when the Green Bay Packers travel to Seattle to take on the Super Bowl Champion Seahawks.  

Over the  course of the next 28 days we focus on the number that represents the days remaining … and for today we take a look number 28.

Yesterday we took a look at #29, with a focus on Charley Brock, one of the top leaders of the Packers in the 1930s and 40.

Today we move on to #28 – a number that’s been worn by a total of 17 different players since 1950. However, aside from Sean Richardson, the current player wearing the number, there haven’t been a whole lot who have been outstanding.

You might remember Matt BowenKregg LumpkinRon Pittsand Brandon Underwood.

And then there are guys that you just don’t want to remember, like Ahmad Carroll.

But once again we allow John Maxymuk, the author of “Packers by the Numbers: Jersey Numbers and the Players Who Wore them,” to take us back about through the years – this time to an outstanding player of the 1970s -  Willie Buchanon.

Willie was one of those rare players who was an All Pro and Pro Bowler year-in and year-out, all the while playing on teams that just didn’t win many games.

Let’s let Maxymuk explain:

Willie Buchanon was a shutdown cover cornerback who had great sped and could tackle. Drafted in the first round in 1972, he was named Defensive Rookie of the Year, made the All Pro team once, and was selected for three Pro Bowls. He returned two of his 21 Packer interceptions for touchdowns, and in his rookie year returned a blocked field goal 57 yards for another score. Throughout his years with the Packers, the team was more effective on the defensive side of the ball. By the time he left, the offense was about to take off and the defense was about to collapse.

Willie’s career was interrupted twice when he broke his left leg in two places in 1973 and when he broke the same leg two years later.

In 1978, he led the NFC in interceptions with nine, including four in one game against the San Diego Chargers. After that year, his seventh in Green Bay, the Packers traded him home to San Diego for first- and seventh-round draft picks, and he played there for another four years.

In retirement, he taught school before going into real estate and becoming active in the San Diego community.

He was elected to the Packers Hall of Fame in 1993.

The following are the players who have worn #28 for the Packers since 1950:

From To AV
Matt Bowen 2001 2002 3
Willie Buchanon 1972 1978 43
Ahmad Carroll 2004 2006 13
Paul Christman 1950 1950 0
Lee Harden 1970 1970 2
Kregg Lumpkin 2008 2008 0
Mike McLeod 1984 1985 2
Basil Mitchell 1999 2000 2
Roderick Mullen 1995 1997 4
Alex Neutz 2012 2012  
Ron Pitts 1988 1990 8
P.J. Pope 2006 2006 0
Sean Richardson 2012 2013 0
Clarence Self 1952 1955 0
Bobby Thomason 1951 1951 0
Brandon Underwood 2010 2011 1
Elbert Watts 1986 1986 1
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