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10 Best NFL Players Who Won the Heisman Trophy 15

Posted on July 21, 2011 by A.J. Foss

Cam Newton will try to join a small group of former Heisman Trophy winners who have been successful in the NFL.

2010 Heisman Trophy Winner Cam Newton is set to begin his career as a NFL quarterback with the Carolina Panthers.

Newton will have fight the Heisman “curse” in which former Heisman Trophy winners do not have productive NFL careers.

However, there have been a number of Heisman winners that not only had successful careers in the NFL, but some ended up in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Here are now the 10 Best NFL Players who won the Heisman Trophy:
10. Jim Plunkett-For the first half of his career, Plunkett was a bust as he struggled with the New England Patriots and San Francisco 49ers following his Heisman win at Stanford in 1970.

Plunkett joined the Oakland Raiders in 1978 to become its backup quarterback and in 1980 became the starter when incumbent Dan Pastorini broke his leg and led the Raiders to a Super Bowl title and was the game’s MVP with a 13-of-21 performance for 261 yards and three touchdowns.

Plunkett remained with the Raiders for six more seasons and led the Raiders to another Super Bowl title in 1983.

9. Paul Hornung-“The Golden Boy” won the Heisman in 1956 despite his Notre Dame Fighting Irish winning only two games, then became a vital part in the Green Bay Packers’ dynasty of the 1960s with his versatility as a halfback, receiver, and kicker.

In his nine NFL seasons, Hornung accounted for a total of 760 points and led the league in scoring from 1959-61, including a then-record 176 points in 1960 and the NFL MVP in 1961.

Hornung helped the Packers to four NFL championships despite missing the 1963 season for betting on NFL games.

8. Eddie George-The 1995 Heisman winner Ohio State became one of the toughest and best running backs during his time in the NFL.

George played nine seasons in the NFL, all but one with the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans, and never missed a game to injury during his time with the Titans.

In his eight seasons with the Titans, George rushed for over 1,000 yards in each season except 2001 where he rushed for 942 yards, and was named to four straight Pro Bowls form 1997 to 2000.

George was a part of the Titans’ Super Bowl team in 1999 where he rushed for 95 yards and two touchdowns in Tennessee’s 23-16 defeat to the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXIV. Read the rest of this entry →

Greatest Individual Playoff Performances in NFL History: 40-21 2

Posted on January 06, 2011 by A.J. Foss

The Cowboys couldn't catch Wilbert Montgomery as he rushed for 194 yards to lead the Eagles to their first Super Bowl.

Last year, I wrote an article detailing the 50 most memorable moments in NFL postseason history.

This year, I have decided to chronicle the 40 Greatest Individual Performances in NFL Playoff History.

This list spans back to the beginning of the Super Bowl era in 1966 and does not feature any performances from the Super Bowl.

So without further adieu, here are the 40 Greatest Individual Performances in NFL Playoff History:

40. (tie)Ty Law-2003 AFC Championship Game, Colts vs. Patriots
Ricky Manning Jr.-2003 NFC Championship Game, Panthers vs. Eagles

Patriots cornerback Ty Law intercepted Peyton Manning three times to help lead his team to a 24-14 win over the Colts to send New England to their second Super Bowl in three years.

In the game following Law’s performance, Panthers rookie cornerback Ricky Manning Jr. picked off three passes in his game to his team to a win, a 14-3 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.

39. Darren Sproles-2008 AFC Wild Card, Colts vs. Chargers

Normally used as a kick returner, Darren Sproles had to fill in at running back for the injured LaDainian Tomlinson in the Chargers’ Wild Card Game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Sproles rushed for 105 yards on 22 carries, to go along with five catches for 45 yards, four kickoff returns for 106 yards, and three punt returns for 72 yards, totaling 328 yards of total offense, the third most in playoff history.

Sproles scored two touchdowns including the game-winning 22-yard touchdown run in overtime to give the Chargers a 23-17 upset over the Colts. Read the rest of this entry →

Roger Staubach: Captain Comeback 1

Posted on January 01, 2011 by Dean Hybl

Roger Staubach

The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month for January was known during his NFL career for leading his team to late-game comebacks and improbable victories.

During his nine seasons as the starting quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, Roger Staubach seemed to always have the uncanny knack of making the big play needed to lift his team to victory. He led the Cowboys to 23 fourth quarter game-winning drives during his career, including 15 times with his team trailing. Read the rest of this entry →

Best Quarterbacks in NFL History: Where Does Favre Rank? 8

Posted on December 27, 2010 by Dean Hybl

Where does Brett Favre rank among the top quarterbacks in NFL history?

Now that it appears Brett Favre’s 20-year NFL career is finally in its last stages, it provides an opportunity to analyze where the gunslinger ranks among the best quarterbacks in NFL history.

There have been many superstar quarterbacks who fall short when selecting the all-time greats because while they may have posted excellent career numbers, they never measurably made their team better.

The best quarterbacks make an average team good, a good team great and a great team into a champion.

Trying to analyze the value Favre brought to the Packers and recently to the Jets and Vikings can be challenging. Given his tendency for risk taking and the subsequent risk-reward results, did Favre make average teams perform at a higher level than they would have otherwise or did he make key mistakes at inopportune times that kept great Packer and Vikings teams from going as far as they maybe would have had he not been such a gunslinger?

During his 19 years as a starting quarterback, Favre has led his team to at least eight victories 17 times and to double digit win totals 10 times. However, Favre has a 2-3 record in NFC Championship Games and late interceptions cost his team in each of his last two trips to the conference title game.

Favre will retire as the NFL’s all-time leader in passing yards, pass attempts, pass completions, touchdown passes, passes intercepted and times sacked. However, he ranks only 17th in completion percentage and 21st in passer rating. So, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between how great he has been and how many of his records are purely a result of his longevity.

Since the game of football and the quarterback position have evolved so dramatically from the early days of the NFL, for the purpose of creating this list, I have included quarterbacks whose primary careers occurred after 1955. There is no question that Sammy Baugh, Otto Graham and Sid Luckman deserve to be recognized as among the best quarterbacks of all-time, but to try and thoughtfully compare their careers to those of today’s stars in virtually impossible.

Because quarterback stats have increased so dramatically even during the last 55 years, using just single season or career stats to analyze all-time greatness isn’t really an accurate assessment of where a player ranks among the best of all-time. Other qualities such as team success, comparison to others from that particular era and quality of the skill position players around the quarterback also can be used to chronicle success.

Below is my take on the top 10 quarterbacks in NFL history. In general, the selections are not significantly different than those listed in many other all-time quarterback lists.  Rather, there are some differences in my order than on other lists. If you have an opinion, please feel free to provide your own top 10. Read the rest of this entry →

Top 10 Plays In Dallas Cowboys’ History 9

Posted on July 21, 2009 by Gene Strother
Tony Dorsett had many memorable plays for the Cowboys.

Tony Dorsett had many memorable plays for the Cowboys.

In this installment of the SilverandBlueBlood Top Ten Top Ten, I turn my attention to the top ten plays in team history. In selecting the plays, I considered several factors:

  1. How memorable was it?
  2. What impact did it have on a game, a championship, or a career?
  3. Was it extraordinary?

As you might imagine, a franchise of this caliber, with nearly fifty years of history, has provided more than its share of memorable plays and water-shed moments. I have dutifully sorted through every play in team history (anyone who believes that stand on your head) to compile my list of top ten plays in Dallas Cowboys’ history.

Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Joe Cronin: Player-Manager
      October 1, 2017 | 8:21 am
      Joe Cronin

      Joe Cronin

      In recognition of the start of the baseball playoffs, we recognize as the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month a man who managed pennant winning teams in Washington and Boston and spent more than decade as a player-manager.

      When the Boston Red Sox acquired Joe Cronin following the 1934 season they didn’t just get an All-Star player, they also got a new manager.

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