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Old 10-31-2012, 01:01 PM    (permalink
Denver Bronco56
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Default Established Player Apperciation Thread

I ran across an article today mention how many great players we have been lucky to watch over the last 10+ years such as Champ Bailey, Tony Gonzales, Ray Lewis etc...

It was a Denver Post piece so it was focused on the high level that Champ Bailey has been playing this year and all homerism aside, It hit me that Im watching one of the best to play his position in the history of the NFL and he could play another 5 years he could decide to hang them up in a year who knows.


This isn't a this guy or that guy should be in the H.O.F type thread but more so just pointing out the players that have changed the game and giving credit to players that have been able to have success and play at a high level for not just a year or two but over the course of their careers.

That being said I present Champ Bailey

I'm going to go out on a limb," Smith said last week as snow descended on the Broncos' practice facility. "This is real close with him and another guy. [Bailey's] the best football player, period, any position I've ever played with. John Elway is a legend. Champ is at that status.

- Rod Smith said this about Bailey

Over his career Bailey has said that he has been targeted on average 3-4 times a game, and that is impressive considering the players that crossed paths with Bailey such as Marvin Harrison, Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Chad Johnson, Jerry Rice and even the elite WR's today he still matches up with and has had no problems blanketing them also.


His 2006 season was in my opinion and others that are not broncos fans agree that it very well could have been the best season by a cornerback in NFL history, but was over shadowed because he was beaten out by Jason Taylor(Dont think he should have won the award but Jason Taylor did have a good year).

During that season teams were so afraid of Champ Bailey they would only throw it to his side of the field three or four times per game. He was only truly tested 35 times. Of those tests he brought in ten interceptions and only allowed four receptions. Of those ten interceptions 6 were in the Red Zone directly taking points from the opposing teams. And to throw more praise he was able to amass 85 tackles and 73 of them solo, taking in account that he only allowed 4 receptions it was not as if he was getting beat and making the tackle most of them were in the running game. He has been considered one of the best run defending defensive backs over his career.


All in all Bailey has been on of my favorite players since he was a Redskin, I still remember the day the Broncos pulled the trigger sending Portis to Washington.

Im not saying Bailey is still the best, that argument would be the same as when people try to still claim Kobe Bryant is the best in the NBA. It takes nothing away from them knowing and accepting they are no longer the BEST, but for players their age to still be considered among the best in the business speaks volumes to how good they were in their prime and how good they have been over their careers. And taking in account that his resume has coincided with the NFL evolving into a passing league making it that much more impressive to have been feared and avoided as he has been.

Career Stats
-201 Games played
-870 tackles (778 Solo)
-3 Sacks
-9 Forced Fumbles
-141 Passes Defended
-52 Interceptions
-4 Inteceptions returned for Touchdown

-89 Receiving Yards
-11 Rushing Yards
-1 Rushing Touchdown

-303 Punt Return yards

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Old 10-31-2012, 01:34 PM    (permalink
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Donald Driver, he had 3 consecutive 1200 yard seasons in the midst of his 6 consecutive 1000 yard seasons. He's an afterthought in the offense now but still a valuable commodity.
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:39 PM    (permalink
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Tony Gonzalez is probably my favorite football player of all time, just edging out Jerry Rice and Derrick Thomas. It was a treat (HALLOWEEN!!!) to watch him play in KC for all those years and he is still getting it done today. I'm rooting for the Falcons because a player and person of his caliber deserves to at least win a gd playoff game before he hangs em up.
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:43 PM    (permalink
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I have always respected/hated Tony because he was a Chief, but what he was able to do and is still doing is amazing!
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:53 PM    (permalink
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This guy. One of my favorite receiver ever.
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:54 PM    (permalink
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Yea Champ is a beast for sure.

I'm gonna go with Steve Smith.

5 time pro bowler
3 time all pro
2005 co comeback player of the year
2005 WR triple crown (1 of only 2 WRs in history to do that. -Jerry Rice)
2005 First player since Art Monk to lead NFL in receptions on team that ran more than they passed

I know he's had some slip ups in his career but he has been one of the best over the last decade. The fact he has been able to stay consistently good at his height and set the records he's set is hard to believe. Nevermind the fact he had guys like Jake Delhomme, Matt Moore and Jimmy Clausen throwing him the ball. Hell he hasn't had consistently good WR opposite him since Moose was in his prime. "His splash reel, his highlight tape. It might be more impressive than anybody's." -Jon Gruden. He might not make the hall of fame, but his impact will never be forgotten. Here's to Steve "Freddy Krueger" Smith.
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Old 10-31-2012, 03:19 PM    (permalink
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Well here's an obvious player, but the reason I love him so much is for his passion for the game of football itself, and that would be Ray Lewis. He's got all the credentials to be a first-ballot HOF, but the way he just loves football is unprecedented and unmatched in my opinion to anyone else in the league today. I hope that this injury doesn't force him into retirement, one of the top 5 LBs of all-time.
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Old 10-31-2012, 03:58 PM    (permalink
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Pretty much every good player on the Bears.
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Old 10-31-2012, 04:11 PM    (permalink
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Charles Woodson. This guy has done just about everything a player can do in a football career. A High School All-American and Mr. Football for the state of Ohio; a national championship and Heisman trophy at Michigan; the NFL's Devensive Rookie of the Year (1998), Defensive Player of the Year (2009), the All-Decade Team (2000s), and a Super Bowl victory. He's returned 11 career interceptions for touchdowns -- one shy of Rod Woodson's record. I try to be careful about saying that a guy is a future Hall of Famer, but Woodson seems like a pretty safe bet.

He also seems like a good guy off the field. On November 26, 2009, Woodson contributed $2 million to the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital for pediatric research. Woodson has his own charitable foundation to support the fight against breast cancer known as "Charles Woodson Foundation".


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Old 10-31-2012, 04:20 PM    (permalink
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I had always thought Woodson was overated while in Oakland, got alot of attention from college(Rightfully so) and was D rookie of the year..but kind of fizzled out. But when he got to Green Bay and they let him roam and around he flourished and revived his career.
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Old 10-31-2012, 04:22 PM    (permalink
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Ronde Barber. A leader and playmaker for 16 seasons! It's gonna suck to see him go as he was the last member of that great 02 defense.

Some career achievements:5 Pro Bowl selection (2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008)
3 First-Team All-Pro selection (2001, 2004, 2005)
2 Second-Team All-Pro selection (2002, 2006)
Super Bowl champion (XXXVII)
NFL 2000s All-Decade Team
20/20 Club
Most consecutive starts by a NFL cornerback
Most quarterback sacks by a NFL cornerback
Buccaneers Interceptions (All-Time)
Led the NFL in interceptions in 2001
Led the NFL in interception touchdowns in 2006

And made maybe made the best franchise play ever
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Old 10-31-2012, 04:27 PM    (permalink
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Tony Gonzalez is probably my favorite non packer. The dude is a class act and the best receiving TE in the history of the game.

As other Packer fans have said Driver and Woodson are among my favorites as well.
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Old 10-31-2012, 05:32 PM    (permalink
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Sea Bass: Kicking ass in the NFL since 2000. He's been a better first round pick than most of the other players picked in the first round that year, including #1 overall pick Courtney Brown.
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Old 10-31-2012, 06:15 PM    (permalink
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Ed Reed. Probably the best safety Ive seen in my life.
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Old 10-31-2012, 06:30 PM    (permalink
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Lance Briggs, I actually think he's passed Derrick Brooks at this point. He's just been so consistently great for so long.
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:16 PM    (permalink
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Lance Briggs, I actually think he's passed Derrick Brooks at this point. He's just been so consistently great for so long.
I wouldn't go that far.
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Old 10-31-2012, 10:41 PM    (permalink
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Tony Gonzalez is probably my favorite non packer. The dude is a class act and the best receiving TE in the history of the game.
and a very underrated blocking TE. look at all the great rushing seasons the Chiefs had with TG on the edge. '99 - 4th - 2,082; '01 - 8th - 2,008; '02 - 3rd - 2,378; '03 - 15th - 1,929; '04 - 5th - 2,289; '05 - 4th - 2,382; '06 - 9th - 2,143. most of this in a running scheme that blocked to the edges and ran the ball outside.
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Old 11-01-2012, 09:32 AM    (permalink
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Short answer, Peyton Manning or Adrian Peterson for me. Jared Allen is in there as well. And Im hoping I can saw the same for Percy Harvin a few seasons down the road. Love that guy.
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Old 11-01-2012, 03:50 PM    (permalink
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The TD Randy Moss had the other night was a thing of beauty. He ran past those guys like he was 22 years old, really sheds a light on how truly athletic he was/is considering people said he was washed up years ago. He may not be able to do everything the same, but that route and the acceleration after showed that he can still play another year if he wants to.


There won't be many more Randy Moss TD's and he could easily be argued as the second greatest WR to ever play the game. I watched that thing at least 10 times, he's a guy I'll be telling people I remember watching play.
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:37 PM    (permalink
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The TD Randy Moss had the other night was a thing of beauty. He ran past those guys like he was 22 years old, really sheds a light on how truly athletic he was/is considering people said he was washed up years ago. He may not be able to do everything the same, but that route and the acceleration after showed that he can still play another year if he wants to.


There won't be very many more Randy Moss TD's who could easily be argued as the second greatest WR to ever play the game. I watched that thing at least 10 times, he's a guy I'll be telling people I remember watching play.
I forgot about old Randy. He was my favorite WR, he was so great at the deep ball and jump ball that kids used his last name as a verb.

I agree 10 years from now or so i will be able to say i watched him make defenses look dumb
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Old 11-01-2012, 08:29 PM    (permalink
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My boy Reggie Wayne. Decided to stay with the colts this off season after they cut the guy he has caught passes from his entire career and a team in complete rebuilding mode that was the worst team in the league the previous year. Maybe a handful of players would have done what he did this past off season. Truly a team player and was the key in a huge win over the packers. I feel like if he was not on this team they would be a complete disaster. Not sure what they would do on offense. He will be huge to Luck's development.
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Old 11-02-2012, 01:39 AM    (permalink
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yeah Champ doesnt get enough love. I did not know he only gave up 4 receptions in that 2006 season, thats ridiculous. Ive always felt like he gave up his share of big plays, but apparently not that year.

ill throw one out there. Randy Moss, say what you want about him but it has been a pleasure watching him throughout his career. he is one of the guys who has truly changed the game. broke the TD record but lost the SB in NE. bounced around a while, but is quietly having a solid year in SF, still chasing that ring.

Jared Allen, Julius Peppers, Dwight Freeney, John Abraham, all great pass-rushers nearing the end of their careers, but what great careers theyve had...one good year after another, all of em
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:41 AM    (permalink
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I miss watching Strahan so freaking much. The things he was able to do. Run stuffing, speed rushing, bull rushing, dude did it ALL
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:33 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Eazy Picks View Post
yeah Champ doesnt get enough love. I did not know he only gave up 4 receptions in that 2006 season, thats ridiculous. Ive always felt like he gave up his share of big plays, but apparently not that year.

ill throw one out there. Randy Moss, say what you want about him but it has been a pleasure watching him throughout his career. he is one of the guys who has truly changed the game. broke the TD record but lost the SB in NE. bounced around a while, but is quietly having a solid year in SF, still chasing that ring.

Jared Allen, Julius Peppers, Dwight Freeney, John Abraham, all great pass-rushers nearing the end of their careers, but what great careers theyve had...one good year after another, all of em
Think about Moss if he would have stayed in Minn and had a QB or played a couple more years in NE... instead of going to oakland to waste a couple years of his prime, or Tenn...

His stats would have been ridiculous
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:53 AM    (permalink
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Jason Witten as probably the best all-around TE to ever play.



3rd among TE's in receptions with 747 and still performing at an insane level (18 catches versus Giants). The fact he is converting 80+% of his targets is incredible. Also 3rd among TE's in yards with 8,396. Only player above Witten in each of those is Sharpe and Gonzalez.

His most remarkable attribute would be his tenacity. His blocking is excellent, he plays through injuries, and is more than willing to break tackles and continue with a full head of steam without a helmet on. Forced the NFL's hand to make play be called dead upon helmet/head separation.

His athleticism might be declining but he's just a savvy route runner that he still manages to get separation. Not hard to envision him playing at this level for a few more years.
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