Top 50 Falcons: No. 16, R.C. Thielemann

R.C. Thielemann, Atlanta Falcons
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Top 50 Falcons: No. 16, R.C. Thielemann

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is counting down the Top 50 players in Atlanta Falcons history during the franchise’s 50th anniversary season. No. 16 is right guard R.C. Thielemann.

R.C. Thielemann, Atlanta Falcons

Tackle R.C. Thielemann played eight seasons with the Falcons. (Atlanta Falcons)

Years played for Falcons: A three-time Pro Bowl selection and one-time All-Pro, R.C. Thielemann was selected in the second round, 36th overall out of Arkansas by the Falcons in the 1977 NFL Draft. He played eight seasons in Atlanta, leaving after the 1984 campaign in a trade and finishing his career with four seasons in Washington, where he won a Super Bowl in 1987.

Jersey No.: 68

His impact on the team: Thielemann played with some of the greatest Falcons of all-time and grew alongside Ring of Honor inductee Mike Kenn, whom he played seven seasons with. Both he and Kenn were mentored by 18-year veteran Jeff Van Note, who anchored the offensive line from his center position for nearly two decades. Thielemann helped block for the likes of Steve Bartkowski, Gerald Riggs and William Andrews among others. While with Atlanta, Thielemann played on the franchise’s first three playoff teams.

On being traded to Washington: “I’ve been here (Atlanta) eight years and my wife and I have made a lot of friends. That’s the bad part. The good part is that I’m going to an established winner.” (

On beating the San Francisco 49ers on Big Ben II after the game: “We’ve been paying the fiddler all season. This time we got a chance to dance.”

Where he is now:
Thielemann, 60, is the president and owner of Capital Mortgage Advisors in Alpharetta.

The countdown to the Top 50 players in Falcons history runs through the end of the season.

Top 50 Falcons Countdown

50: Chuck Smith
49: Michael Haynes
48: Jonathan Babineaux
47: John Zook
46: Ken Reaves
45: Lynn Cain
44: Justin Blalock
43: Bobby Butler
42: Tim Mazzetti
41: Buddy Curry
40: Scott Case
39: Jeff Merrow
38: Elbert Shelley
37: Matt Bryant
36: Alge Crumpler
35: Michael Turner
34: Ray Buchanan
33: Chris Hinton
32: Terance Mathis
31: Devin Hester
30: Don Smith
29: Greg Brezina
28: Chris Miller
27: John James
26: Bob Whitfield
25: Rolland Lawrence
24: Alfred Jenkins
23: Billy Johnson
22: Chris Chandler
21: Morten Andersen
20: John Abraham
19: George Kunz
18: Jamal Anderson
17: Keith Brooking
16: R.C. Thielemann

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