Chuck Muncie was only in the Chargers’ offensive backfield for five seasons, but he made a lasting impact in that short time.
Selected with the No. 3 overall pick of the 1976 NFL Draft out of California, Muncie began his professional career with the New Orleans Saints. In 1980, he was traded to the Chargers.
He made an immediate difference for the Bolts, rushing for 1,144 yards and 19 touchdowns in 1981, his first full season with the team. The 19 rushing touchdowns he tallied matched a single-season NFL record at that time.
To this day, his 3,309 rushing yards still rank sixth in team history. His 43 touchdowns are second-most ever by a Chargers running back.
It was clear during his college career that Muncie would be an outstanding pro. He ran for 3,052 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns in three years at Cal. In 1976, he was named the first-ever MVP of the Japan Bowl, a college football All-Star game played from 1976 to 1993.
In the pro ranks, he was selected to the Pro Bowl three times and was the game’s MVP in 1979. He was also named to the Chargers’ 40th and 50th Anniversary squads.
Muncie had his problems off the field with a drug addiction that landed him in prison, but he went on to help youths battle their own problems as a way to make amends. However on the field, he was a beast. A touchdown machine during some of the Chargers’ best years in the early 1980s, Muncie, at the very least, deserves to be in the team’s Hall of Fame at some point down the road.