Herb Lusk, Ex-Philadelphia Eagle player, dies at 69

Herbert Herb Lusk was an American Football running back who played for three seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He played for the Philadelphia Eagles from 1976 to 1978, having played college football for Long Beach State and Monterey Peninsula College.

He was the first NFL player to kneel in the endzone after a touchdown and pray on October 9, 1977. Lusk was currently the pastor of the Greater Exodus Baptist Church in Philadelphia.

Former Philadelphia Eagle player, team chaplain, and pastor, Herb Lusk dies at age of 69

Lusk was diagnosed with cancer and he died on Monday at the age of 69 surrounded by his family. The Philadelphia Eagles organization is mourning the loss of former running back and team chaplain Herb Lusk. He was 69 in age and died in his own residence.  Lusk was a long-time pastor of Greater Exodus Church on Broad Street. He was also an Eagles chaplain during their run to the Super Bowl.

A statement from the Lusk Family to the church congregation: “With great sorrow, the Lusk Family announces the transition from earth to the glory of our beloved husband and father, Reverend Dr. Herbert Herb Lusk, II on Monday, September 19, 2022.”

Herb Lusk’s Early Life

Lusk was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on February 19, 1953. He attended Seaside High School in Seaside, California. Herb initially studied at Monterey Peninsula College, before transferring to California State University, Long Beach. He played for the Long Beach State 49ers from 1974 to 1975.

herb lusk family

Lusk started his custom of praying after scoring a touchdown during his senior year, in which he led the Pacific Coast Athletic Association in Touchdowns. Lusk was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the tenth round of the 1976 Draft.

Herb Lusk’s Professional Career

Lusk made his NFL debut with the Eagles on September 12, 1976, at the age of 23, in a 27-7 loss against the Dallas Cowboys. He played in 14 games during his rookie season and recorded 254 rushing yards, 13 receptions, and 119 receiving yards.

Herb finished seventh in the league in the longest rushing attempt the following year and became the first NFL player to kneel in the endzone after a touchdown and prayer on October 9, 1977. He just played 3 games during his final year in the NFL, before quitting football to become a minister.

Herb Lusk’s Personal Life

Lusk was married to Vickey until his death. Together, they had three children: Danielle, Laiah, and Herbert II. Lusk was inducted into the CSULB Hall of Fame in October 2005 and was also enshrined in MPC’s Lobo Hall of Fame.

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After retiring from professional football, Lusk became a pastor of the Greater Exodus Baptist Church in Philadelphia. He also served as team chaplain to the Eagles. A supporter of the Republican Party, he delivered the invocation at the party’s national convention in 2000. His church was later given 1 Million in federal funds to run a program assisting low-income Philadelphians.