Leon Lett, a former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman who won three Super Bowl titles and earned two Pro Bowl berths during his 10-year run with the club, now settles into the next phase of his NFL career as an assistant coach with the same organization that drafted him. Lett assisted the Cowboys during the 2011 training camp as a member of the NFL’s Minority Coaching Fellowship Program and was later hired on a full-time basis to assist with the team’s defensive line as a defensive assistant/defensive line coach during the 2011 season.
Prior to joining the Cowboys, Lett’s only previous experience as a coach came in 2010 when he served as the defensive line coach at the University of Louisiana at Monroe. He also served as a volunteer assistant at UNLV in 2009.
Drafted in the seventh round (173rd overall) of the 1991 NFL Draft, Lett became the first and only player ever selected by the Cowboys out of Emporia State to make the squad’s final roster. Nicknamed “Big Cat” by his teammates for his agility, Lett compiled 361 tackles, 22.5 sacks, 37 tackles for losses, 128 quarterback pressures, 26 pass breakups, eight forced fumbles, seven fumble recoveries and four blocked kicks while playing in 109 games with 73 starts during a 10-year career as a Cowboys player. He also appeared in 14 postseason contests with nine starts, including three Super Bowl victories.
Lett concluded his playing career with the Denver Broncos in 2001 where he totaled 15 tackles in 12 games.
During his collegiate career, Lett was a big part of a defense that held opponents to 4.1 yards-per-play and 3.1 yards-per-carry during his two years at Emporia State. He finished second on the team in sacks (four) and earned All-NAIA District 10 honors despite missing three games due to a leg injury as a senior. In his first season with the Hornets in 1989 after playing in junior college, Lett helped Emporia State to the Central States Intercollegiate Conference title and their first appearance in the NAIA Championship Game. He also earned honorable mention NAIA All-America, All-NAIA District 10 and ALL-CSIC honors after leading the team in passes defensed (10) and blocked kicks (two) and finishing second in tackles (83) and sacks (five) as a junior. In two previous seasons at Hinds (Miss.) Junior College, Lett recorded 141 tackles, 10 sacks, nine passes defensed and recovered three fumbles.
Lett returned to school to earn his college degree in university studies with concentrations on sociology and history from UNLV in 2009.
Lett has a daughter, Leondra Rachel.