“The Office” Star is a former NFL Cheerleader

Phyllis Smith, who is best known for her role at the maternal knitter ‘Phyllis Lapin-Vance on NBC’s The Office, has been busy at work promoting her new movie Bad Teacher, where she plays the role of co-worker and friend of Cameron Diaz’s character.

Phyllis Smith
The Office's Phyllis Smith as a St. Louis Cardinals Cheerleader

There has been a surprising revelation for fans of the sitcom “The Office”: Michael Scott’s favorite put-down target, quiet Dunder-Mifflin employee, Phyllis, was once upon a time an NFL Cheerleader. Coincidentally Phyllis (Smith) who has the same name in real life was once paid to wave her pom-poms for the Cardinals of St. Louis (now known as the Arizona Cardinals) in front of thousands of screaming fans. It wasn’t very long before her life took her on a very different career path.

While making her rounds with the media recently, Smith has been questioned about her past which included a colorful array of professions including burlesque dancer, pre-school teacher, casting agency employee, and NFL Cheerleader to top the list.

In a recent interview with Slate.com, Smith talked about her time working for the team and what NFL cheerleading was like in those days.

“I was at the height of my glory, because I loved dancing and wearing the boots and the hot pants, the tied up shirts, looking really hot. And I was able to dance, I loved football. My dad used to have season tickets, so I was flirting with the guys on the sidelines as much as I could. The organizations make sure that the cheerleaders and the players have minimal contact, but that’s what you try to do. It was great, in the ’70’s,” said Smith.

News surfaced several years ago that Smith was a cheerleader for the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1970s. In fact, that tidbit of information is part of her bio page on NBC.com.

Now-a-days, due to the proven internet “standard of proof” it is easy to see exactly how different Ms. Smith’s old-school hairstyle and cheerleading uniform is from the modern day look you would find on today’s sidelines.

Phyllis in hot pants. It is likely a safe bet to say not many people expected to have that thought enter their minds. According to the interview, Smith still dances for pleasure “from time to time.”

Now the real question is: How long before the Cardinals invite her back for a cameo on the sidelines?


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