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Craig Sauer (born December 13, 1973 in Sartell, Minnesotamarker) is a former professional American football linebacker who played for the Atlanta Falcons and Minnesota Vikings. His father was a professional minor league baseball player and he has three brothers who have played professional ice hockey.

Football Career

Sauer played collge football at the University of Minnesotamarker. He was drafted in the 6th (next to last) round by the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL) in 1996, with the 188th pick of the draft. He ended up playing more NFL games than all but 12 of the 87 players taken in the last two rounds of that year's draft. As a rookie in 1996, Sauer played in all 16 games for the Falcons, but only started one. He had seven tackles, four assists and one forced fumble that season. In 1997, he once again played in all 16 games and started one. He had eight tackles, one assist and one fumble reocvery for the season.

In 1998, he played all 16 games again, and started six, primarily at right linebacker, as the Falcons went on to win the National Football Conference championship and play in the Super Bowl. He set a career high with 29 tackles, and also had five assists and his only career interception, and got to play in the Super Bowl. In 1999, he again played all 16 games for the Falcons, starting three. He had 18 tackles, six assists and his only career sack.

Sauer joined the Minnesota Vikings for the 2000 season. In what would be his final NFL season, he played in nine games for the Vikings. He did not start any games, and had only one tackle for the season.


Sauer's father, Curt Sauer was a minor league baseball player in the Minnesota Twins system. Three of his brothers, Kent, Kurt and Michael have played professional ice hockey. Kent Sauer was a 4th round draft pick by the Nashville Predators in 1998, but his professional career was derailed by a knee injury. Kurt Sauer is a defenceman for the Phoenix Coyotes of the National Hockey League. And Michael Sauer is a defenseman with the National Hockey League's New York Rangers, after playing most of the 2008-2009 season with the Rangers' minor league affiliate in Hartford.


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