If you are a fan of American football, you might have heard of the names Marion Barber and Ronde Barber. Both of them were former NFL players who had successful careers in the league. But are they related? The answer is no. Despite sharing the same last name, Marion Barber and Ronde Barber are not related by blood or marriage. Here is what you need to know about them.
Who is Marion Barber?
Marion Barber III was a running back who played for the Dallas Cowboys and the Chicago Bears from 2005 to 2011. He was born on June 10, 1983, in Plymouth, Minnesota. He was the older brother of former Houston Texans safety Dominique Barber and Minnesota Golden Gophers linebacker Thomas Barber, and the son of former New York Jets running back Marion Barber Jr. He was also a cousin of Peyton Barber, who currently plays for the Washington Football Team.
Marion Barber III played college football at the University of Minnesota, where he shared the backfield with Laurence Maroney. He was drafted by the Cowboys in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He spent six seasons with the Cowboys, where he earned the nickname “Marion the Barbarian” for his powerful and punishing running style. He made the Pro Bowl in 2007, when he rushed for 975 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also helped the Cowboys reach the playoffs three times.
In 2011, Barber signed with the Bears as a free agent. He played only one season with them, rushing for 422 yards and six touchdowns in 11 games. He retired from the NFL after that season, finishing his career with 4,780 rushing yards and 53 rushing touchdowns.
Sadly, Marion Barber III passed away on June 1, 2022, at the age of 38. The cause of his death was not disclosed. His former teams and teammates expressed their condolences and paid tribute to him on social media.
Who is Ronde Barber?
Ronde Barber was a cornerback who played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 1997 to 2012. He was born on April 7, 1975, in Roanoke, Virginia. He is the identical twin brother of Tiki Barber, a former running back for the New York Giants. His father, James Barber, was a star cornerback at Virginia Tech and later played in the World Football League.
Ronde Barber played college football at the University of Virginia, where he was a three-time All-ACC selection and a consensus All-American in 1996. He was drafted by the Buccaneers in the third round of the 1997 NFL Draft. He spent his entire 16-year career with the Buccaneers, where he became one of the best cornerbacks in NFL history. He made five Pro Bowls, three first-team All-Pro selections, two second-team All-Pro selections, and was named to the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team. He also led the NFL in interceptions in 2001, with 10.
Ronde Barber is best known for his role in the Buccaneers’ Super Bowl XXXVII victory over the Oakland Raiders in 2002. He sealed the win with a 92-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter, which is considered one of the most iconic plays in franchise history. He also holds the record for most consecutive starts by a defensive back, with 215 (224 including playoffs). He is one of only two players in NFL history to have at least 40 interceptions and 20 sacks in their career, along with Charles Woodson. He is also the only player to have at least 45 interceptions and 25 sacks.
Ronde Barber retired from the NFL after the 2012 season, finishing his career with 1,251 tackles, 28 sacks, 197 pass deflections, 47 interceptions, 15 forced fumbles, and 14 touchdowns. He was inducted into the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Ring of Honor in 2018, and will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2023. He currently works as an analyst for Fox Sports.
Marion Barber and Ronde Barber were both outstanding NFL players who left their mark on the game. However, they were not related to each other in any way. They just happened to share a common surname that is fairly common among African Americans. They also played different positions and never faced each other on the field. They did have some similarities though: they both had brothers who also played in the NFL, they both played college football in Virginia or Minnesota, they both wore number 20 on their jerseys, and they both retired after playing for only one team in their careers.