Tag Archives: Lawrence Taylor

THE NFL PLAYERS I’D TRUST THE MOST

Jay C. Brandriet

7/27/18

This is the goal. I need to pick 53 NFL players to fill out a roster. I have to get ten guys for a practice squad. The pool of athletes I’m choosing from is from 1980 to 2018. Let’s say they are playing a season for me, and the stakes couldn’t be higher. This is not a list of the 63 best players I’ve seen. I’m trying to build a team. Here are the NFL player’s I’d trust the most.

 

OFFENSE

 

QUARTERBACKS

Tom Brady/Joe Montana/Aaron Rodgers/Steve Young

I rank Elway higher than Young all time. In this case I’m mixing it up with a lefty, and a beyond scrimmage runner like Steve Young. Rodgers can be my “hail mary” guy. I would have used John there as well.

 

RUNNING BACKS/FULLBACKS

Walter Payton/Marshall Faulk/Terrell Davis/LaDainian Tomlinson/Marcus Allen

Payton is the best football player on this team. T.D. and L.T. can carry the load. Faulk stretches the field and will excel in the slot. Marcus Allen can play full back and gets it done in short yardage.

Allen was an elegant glider. He could do all the dirty work as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WIDE RECEIVERS

Jerry Rice/Randy Moss/Calvin Johnson/Michael Irvin/Larry Fitzgerald

The first three are the best I’ve seen do it. Irvin is the groups motivator. Fitzgerald beat out Cris Carter by an inch.

 

TIGHT ENDS

Tony Gonzalez/Rob Gronkowski/Jason Witten 

Witten will also help make up for not having a traditional full back.

 

OFFENSIVE LINE 

Larry Allen/John Hannah/Anthony Munoz/Bruce Matthews/Jonathan Ogden/Gary Zimmerman/Randall McDaniel/Dermontti Dawson

 

SPECIALISTS

Devin Hester/Mark Kelso/Adam Vinatieri/Shane Lechler

Hester could play all three phases of the game if needed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COACHES

Bill Parcells/Bill Walsh/Bill Belichick/Jimmy Johnson

 

DEFENSE

 

DEFENSIVE LINE

Reggie White/J.J. Watt/Warren Sapp/Bruce Smith/Randy White/Aaron Donald/Michael Strahan/Julius Peppers/Ted Washington

Peppers will block your field goal attempt. I needed a classic plugger, and thought of going with Vince Wilfork. Ted Washington will provide that instead at 6’5″, 365 lbs.

 

LINEBACKERS

Ray Lewis/Lawrence Taylor/Derrick Brooks/DeMarcus Ware/Patrick Willis/Luke Kuechly

Lewis and Brooks can play that rugged middle role. Taylor and Ware will kill it off the edge. Willis and Kuechly give me the modern mobile backers.

Miller jumps off the TV and on to quarterbacks. He allows me to pass on Doleman, Manley, and Wilber Marshall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DEFENSIVE BACKS

Deion Sanders/Darrelle Revis/Champ Bailey/Aeneas Williams/Ronde Barber

Ronnie Lott/Ed Reed/Troy Polamalu/Rod Woodson

These dudes are impressive. They can all play the entire defensive backfield. Most versatile unit on this trust squad. They can block and tackle on special teams. Some can play running back and receiver. If Reed touches the ball, he’s magic. Barber can cover the Welker types. Lott and Polamalu can play spot linebacker duty, and a couple can throw.

Troy was a game wrecking safety. Clutch plays became a habit for him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRACTICE SQUAD

Peyton Manning/Sterling Sharpe/Tony Boselli/Mark Bavaro

 Derrick Thomas/Darrell Green/Mike Singletary/Charles Woodson

Von Miller/Morten Anderson 

I need Green’s speed and Singletary’s voice. Woodson is All-Pro at everything. Bavaro is just a brawler you want on your side.

I’m curious which players you would trust.

 

Jay C. Brandriet

 

 

 

 

 

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THE NFL PLAYER THAT SCARED ME THE MOST

7/15/18

Jay C. Brandriet

I was almost eight years old and I knew I wanted the Dallas Cowboys to beat the Washington Redskins. The winner would go to the Super Bowl. I also knew that as a fan, Dexter Manley was the player that scared me the most.

I remember the way he looked with his hand in the dirt. He was like a monster, waiting behind a sling shot. Number seventy-two would explode into the backfield. He was tall, powerful, and hungry to kill quarterbacks. Manley hated the Cowboys and I could feel it through the TV. I would watch him pre snap, and be worried for the health of every offensive player on Dallas.

In the NFC title game, Dexter helped Danny white to the sideline. His tipped pass led to an interception, and a Washington victory.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As the 1980’s rolled on the NFC East was coached by Parcells, Gibbs, and Buddy Ryan. There were plenty of defenses to worry about, especially as the Cowboys were coming down inside the pack.

There were also better players than Manley in his division, and even on his own team. Reggie White, Lawrence Taylor, and Darrell Green rush to mind. Dexter had a stand out career. The category was not about complete play, it was about fear.

It was natural for me to cheer for Tony Dorsett and Danny White. To want their success, was to learn the guys on the other side can be scary. Dexter Manley will always have respect in my memory.

 

Jay C. Brandriet

 

 

 

I’LL TELL YOU HOW LOSING SUPER BOWL 52 CHANGES TOM BRADY’S LEGACY

Jay C. Brandriet

2/6/18

The New England Patriots just played their typical “this is anybody’s game” type Super Bowl. It was another classic, and this time the Pats fell short. You’re sick of Tom Brady winning? I can appreciate that. You took joy in him losing Super Bowl 52? Most have your back. The amount of shade being put in Brady’s direction is over the top. Rob Parker shouted, “this clearly takes away his greatest of all time label.” Shannon Sharpe claims “this loss was 75 percent Brady’s fault.”

It’s true that the end result matters. Don’t lose sight that Brady simply rolls out of bed and ends up in AFC title games.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trying to re adjust where this QB ranks historically is a bad look. I think he came out of this game, a greater player. Tom threw some bad balls, sure. He also dropped an overthrown pass that will bother him for the rest of his life. The crucial fumble at the end? That was a product of the game. The Eagles made an incredible play. That was zero percent on Brady.

This performance was about heavy lifting. His defense gave him very little help. No player ever had 500 plus yards, three scores, with zero picks and lost ANY game. Tom carried his team to simply having a chance.

You do realize the greatest quarterback debate is over right? I can buy that you prefer someone else. It’s true others have played the game as well, and several close to as well. Brady doesn’t have Elway’s arm and leg strength. He doesn’t have Marino’s release or Aaron Rodgers fluid skills.

Joe Montana played football just as good as Tom does. Joe was equally as surgical, and moved like a ballerina. Brady has been Montana like, for much longer. In the impossible world of ranking players, I moved Tom past Joe as the “GOAT” Thanksgiving day 2015.

In review, number 12 was just the MVP of the NFL at the age of 40. He was down 10 in the fourth quarter of the championship game to the best defense in the AFC. The result was his 27th playoff win. Perspective? Over a combined 32 seasons, legit Hall of Famer’s Dan Fouts and Warren Moon combined for six post season victories.

The year ends with Tom’s eighth Super Bowl appearance. I’d guess his performance was a record-breaking, disappointing “9.3”. Once the Patriots took the lead, you were sure they would win. Hail Mary on the last play? You were scared to death! We have seen Brady pull off clutch gems on the biggest stage so often, it’s become a habit to think he will come through. He lost? I know.

How does the loss affect his legacy? He’s on a different level. Tom Brady can now be considered the greatest football player of all time. I understand the game is diverse. Brady did not dominate in the way Jim Brown did. Tom will never be the best player ever at two positions like Deion Sanders. Jerry Rice was perfect. Larry Allen could bench press over 700 lbs. and played like it. How good were Ronnie Lott, Reggie White, and Lawrence Taylor at football? Walter Payton was elusive, powerful, and maybe the best running back ever. He could also block, kick, catch, return kicks, tackle and throw. I understand the game is diverse.

Tom Brady is as good as all of them. His resume is better. He plays the most important position in the ultimate team sport. His job is to win football games. In an era of player movement and parity, this guy kind of owns the league. He’s not Michael Jordan, but he sits at the same table. You thought Sunday hurt Brady’s legacy? Sorry.

Jay C. Brandriet