St. Louis Cardinals road jersey worn by Hall of Fame tight end Jackie Smith during the early 1970s. Graded a perfect A10 by MEARS. Jackie Smith game used jerseys are rare. This is the first we have ever offered and we can recall having seen only a few others at auction in the past twenty-five years. The white Dureen jersey features the number "81" on the front, reverse, and each shoulder, all screened in red. The name "Smith" is sewn in red tackle twill letters upon a white nameplate on the reverse. Both a Russell Athletic size "50" tag and a "Johnny Mac's Sporting News" tag appear on the left front tail. The jersey, which is original as issued, displays heavy wear throughout, including light staining front and reverse, and crazing to the painted numerals.
Jackie Smith was one of the most versatile and durable tight ends of his era. Drafted by the Cardinals in the tenth round of the 1963 NFL Draft as a receiver, he became a tight end by necessity when starting tight end Taz Anderson went down with an injury early in the season. His speed, combined with his outstanding blocking ability, quickly earned him the starting spot at the tight end position and he remained the club's number-one tight end for the next fourteen seasons. A five-time Pro Bowl selection, Smith finished his fifteen-year career with 480 receptions, 7.918 receiving yards, and 40 touchdowns. Despite his many accomplishments, Smith is best remembered today for his dropped touchdown pass in Super Bowl XIII as a member of the Dallas Cowboys. In 1994 Smith received his highest honor when he became just the third tight end in football history to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Full LOA from MEARS (graded A10).