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Lyle Martin Alzado was a professional American football defensive lineman of the National Football League who played 15 seasons for the Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns and Oakland Raiders. He was drafted in the 4th round (79th overall) of the 1971 NFL Draft by the Broncos. He played college football at Yankton College. Throughout his career, Alzaldo was famous for his intense and intimidating style of play. In 196 career games, he racked up 112.5 sacks and earned two Pro Bowl selections in 1977 and 1978. He would spend his last years in the league with the Oakland Raiders where he would win a championship in Super Bowl XVIII. In 1982 he was voted the NFL Comeback Player of the Year. Although he played a full season in 1981, his play was seemingly so superior in 1982 that he garnered the award. In the strike-shortened 1982 season of 9 games, Alzado recorded 7 sacks and 30 tackles while being voted All-AFC. This was the sixth season out of his first twelve campaigns that he received some sort of post-season honor. Alzado was one of the fiercest competitors the NFL has ever seen. In fact, due to Alzado throwing an opponent's helmet across the field, the league instituted a rule specifically banning the act. He continued to perform well for the Raiders in the 1983 season, helping lead them to a Super Bowl that year while recording 50 tackles and 7½ sacks. He also had an outstanding 1984 season with 63 tackles and 6 sacks, but was injured part way through 1985 and retired at the end of the year. His tackle and sack totals dipped to 31 and 3. Alzado is probably most remembered today for being one of the first major U.S. sports figures to admit using steroids. In the last years of his life, as he battled against the brain tumor that eventually caused his death at the age of 43, Alzado asserted that his steroid abuse directly led to his fatal illness, but each of his physicians stated it could not be true, and that while steroids do have harsh side effects, they were not the cause of his brain cancer. According to some reports, Alzado was using natural growth hormone, harvested from human corpses, as opposed to synthetic growth hormones. Alzado is buried at River View Cemetery in Portland, Oregon. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]
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