GIF's Where Are They Now

Discussion in 'NFL General Discussion' started by Sweets, May 6, 2007.

  1. Sweets

    Sweets All-Pro

    In following with Retro Dan's topic, I hope to start what will become a thread of information that will give some light to our heroes of yesterday and what has become of them. I know I often wonder what ever happen to so and so, I wonder what he's doing or where does he live now that his career is over, whatever the case may be I'm sure I'm not alone in wondering where have some of our favorite players have gone after their retirements.

    Feel free to post your own stories of wondering.

    John Taylor: Touchdowns to trucking

    John Taylor fulfilled the dream of many little kids -- scoring the winning touchdown in a Super Bowl. Now, the man who caught a 10-yard pass from Joe Montana with 34 seconds left in Super Bowl XXIII, giving San Francisco a 20-16 victory over Cincinnati, is blazing a new path in life.

    A third-round pick out of Delaware State, Taylor might have played second fiddle to Jerry Rice in the 49ers' offense, but he certainly left his mark on the game, earning two Pro Bowl selections (1988-1989) and three Super Bowl rings.

    In nine NFL seasons, Taylor recorded 347 receptions for 5,589 yards (an average of 16.1 yards per catch) and 43 touchdowns. He also gained 1,517 yards and two touchdowns returning punts, and added another 276 yards returning kickoffs.

    After hanging up his cleats following the 1995 season, Taylor surprised many by returning to his first passion. In 1998, he created J.T. Taylor Trucking Inc., a company that transports products from coast to coast. He initially employed five drivers, but in 2000, opted to downsize and get behind the wheel himself.

    "I knew trucking before I knew football," Taylor said. "My grandfather and all of my uncles drove, so I grew up around it."

    Taylor drives his W900L Kenworth from California to Phildelphia every week, delivering Cisco Foods and Perdue Farms Poultry. The 18-wheeler is equipped with two beds, two closets, a dresser, television, microwave and refrigerator.

    The only drawback of the job for Taylor is the time it takes him away from his wife Elaine, and two daughters, who are both in college. Jonnelle attends her father's alma mater, Delaware State, while Natalie is closer to home at Utah State. But the couple has made it work, with Elana joining her husband for a few trips.

    The most important thing is Taylor is content with his new life. Driving has more than filled whatever void football might have left behind. In fact, it has allowed him to leave the game behind altogether.

    "Out of the people who know I played football, the majority of them know I don't really talk football," Taylor said. "I'll tell them 'Hey, I don't play football anymore man, you probably know as much as I do. But if you want to talk about trucking, I'll talk to you about that.'"
  2. My piece is on former Colts player Jason Belser:

    Jason Belser found out at an early age that football was his passion and it continues to drive him to this day. After playing 11 seasons, nine with the Colts and two with his hometown Chiefs, Belser now works for the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) helping facilitate many programs and working with active players on a daily basis.

    "I always knew I wanted to play football," Belser said. "Football is something that comes natural to me, and I didn't mind doing it. I wanted to be the best at an early age. I knew this at about four or five years old."

    Belser's father, Caesar, also had a career in the NFL but Jason found the game on his own after his father had already retired. "My dad didn't have a huge impact, because he never forced me to play," he explained. "I didn't play tackle football until I was in high school. But this has always been something I wanted to do. I have enjoyed doing it, and it was been such a wonderful opportunity for me."

    Belser graduated from the University of Oklahoma and was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the eighth round of the 1992 NFL Draft. In his 11 seasons as a NFL safety, Belser posted three touchdowns, nine sacks, and 14 interceptions returned for 338 yards. But when his teammates started calling him "old man" in the locker room, and his clothing became out of style, he knew it was time to walk away.

    When he left the league he took time to think about what his next career move should be, but he mostly spent most of his time relaxing. "I watched football for a year and relaxed with my kids and enjoyed my wife and family," he offered. "I was just glad being out of the tight regimen from day to day."

    Belser had been working closely with the NFLPA during his playing career and was twice elected by the Colts as a player representative. He also was twice selected to serve on the prestigious Executive Committee so it was a natural progression for him to take a Regional Director position with the union earlier this year. "This position was always something I had wanted in the back of my mind," he said. "I put a plug into (NFLPA Executive Director) Gene Upshaw's ear about a year and a half to two years ago. I don't know if he thought I was serious about it or not, but the position became available this time last year. I heard about it and I thought it would be a great opportunity."

    The position allows Belser to remain close to the game and educate the current crop of NFL players on the importance of the NFLPA and all it offers. "I just wanted to stay close to football and make sure the players' rights were being protected," Belser said. "A lot of people fought long and hard for this organization for many years."

    Having gone through it all from being drafted to playing 11 years to retiring Belser offers a unique perspective to today's NFL players. "I have an understanding of what the active players are going through and an understanding of what it is to be a retired player," he said. "There are a lot of changes and transformations you have to go through to be successful in retirement."

    Belser grew up in Kansas City where his father was part of the Chiefs 1969 World Championship team. While Belser dreamed of playing for the Chiefs and eventually did play his final two seasons there, he became enamored with Indianapolis and remains thankful to the Colts organization. "I am a Colt through and through," he stated. "They gave me my first opportunity in a wonderful city, Indianapolis. Playing in Kansas City was more for my family, because of my father playing in the NFL. We had an okay team, but we weren't good and that sort of sours things. It was really the nostalgia of my family because of my dad."

    When Belser reflects back on his NFL career, his fondest memory is the 1995 playoff run with the Colts. The team fell one completed pass short of reaching the Super Bowl. "We got into the playoffs through a wild card spot, and we beat San Diego and then beat Kansas City," he recalled. "We lost to Pittsburgh on the second-to-last play, but it was really rewarding to be apart of that. I think it's either that memory or when we went 13-3 in Indianapolis in 2001. But I think it's the playoff run more than anything."

    From being a team player in college and the NFL to his current position with the NFLPA, Belser has found great success on and off the football field. "When you get everything you always wanted to have you should have no regrets," he said. "My motto is, 'You practice with a purpose and play with a passion.' And that is exactly what I did. I practiced with a purpose, and I played with a passion; I practiced with a conscious, and I played with confidence. And that was my motto."
  3. RetroDan#16

    RetroDan#16 Resident Artiste

    Nice thread! A piece on my favourite back of all time:
    Roger Craig

    Roger Craig - Still Running On A Full Tank

    Khalil Garriott

    He retired after the 1993 season, but Roger Craig still can't stop running.

    Running in the literal sense, yes. (He hits the pavement for 40-50 miles per week.) But he's also running the show as a director for a software company, a community activist and a marathon organizer. If it's challenging and enriching, Craig wants to do it.

    "Running is a passion for meI just enjoy the challenge," Craig said. "It makes you feel good when you accomplish something that's positive for yourself."

    With five marathons under his belt at age 46, Craig knows a thing or two about endurance and staying in shape. He still trains regularly, and he recently contributed his expertise to the Rock 'n' Roll Half-Marathon in San Diego, Calif. ( Working in concert with a company called Elite Racing, Craig originally got the idea after seeing first-hand how positive it was for the San Diego community as a participant. With a vision and a goal, he approached the then-mayor of San Jose to get the ball rolling. Thanks to Craig's foresight, the 11th-largest city in the U.S. had a community-driven event promoting health and wellness featuring over 12,000 participants.

    With live bands and high school cheerleaders performing at each of the 13 mile posts, "the community really came together and a lot of different charities were involved," according to Craig. "Pretty awesome! It was basically my baby, and it was so positive," he enthusiastically said.

    When he's not orchestrating the production of a marathon, Craig is likely out there competing himself. Though his career on the gridiron has kept him passionate about running, he knows it's not easy to remain in top physical shape.

    "Playing 11 years in the NFL as a running back, I'm fortunate to have the opportunity to do something I like to do and have a passion for, and that's running," Craig said. "I feel really blessed that I'm able to do these things."

    Blessed as he is, Craig has his hand in a number of different ventures. He's involved in United Way of the Quad Cities near his hometown of Davenport, Iowa and also works with the Boys and Girls Club in San Francisco. When he hosts his annual celebrity golf tournament, it's another way he gives back to others. He has raised more than $850,000 over the last nine to 10 years of hosing that event, he said. And he's often called on by former teammates like Ronnie Lott, whose All-Stars Helping Kids foundation auctions off different activities with Craig benefiting educational programs at local school systems.

    Having conquered the art of running, Craig's got his sights set on a new physical activity: doing a triathlon. "I need to get over the phobia of the water," he admitted, adding "I just love challengesthat's what life is all about. That's what keeps you young."

    In his position as Director of Business Development for Tibco Software Inc., Craig is responsible for a different type of challenge: creating new business for the company. He made the transition from marketing to sales, helping Tibco provide software and services for companies to coordinate their myriad assets in real-time. Having stayed in the San Francisco bay area, people obviously know who he is from 49ers lore, but name recognition by itself rarely helps a company's bottom line.

    "Sure, it opened up doors," Craig said of his NFL success carrying over into his 9 to 5 for the past eight years. "But you still gotta be able to talk the talk and walk the walk. You gotta know your customers, because if not, you'll lose them and someone else will come up and sweep them away from you."

    For the uninitiated, his role during the 1980s was a role that hadn't been seen before. As a running back coming out of the backfield to rush and catch with equal skill, Craig changed the way pro football was played. The style popularized by players like LaDainian Tomlinson, Marshall Faulk, Brian Westbrook and Reggie Bush was started by Craig. Since his days as a dual-threat running back, the West Coast offense hasn't been the same.

    "I orchestrated and revolutionized the West Coast offense, coming out of the backfield catching and running the ball," Craig confidently but accurately stated. "I was the first to do that in the mid-80s and it wasn't heard of. I feel real good that I pioneered that whole West Coast system in the early 80s."

    To say that athletic genes run in Craig's family would be a vast understatement. All five of his children are active in sports, carrying on the competitive fire that still burns in their father. One of his sons, Rogdrick Craig, is a 6-foot-6, 235-pound forward on the Texas Tech men's basketball team coached by Bobby Knight. Two daughters, Rometra and Damesha, were both All-Americans in track and field while 15-year-old son Alex is already 6-foot-3. The baby of the group, Nia-Jai, 9, enjoys playing basketball and volleyball. Needless to say, they don't have far to go when seeking athletic advice.

    The proud father said, "I really enjoy watching my sons play and I support [my children] as much as possible. The cool thing is my two eldest daughters live in L.A., so they're only an hour away.

    "I also really enjoy spending time with my wife Vernessia; she's like my everything. I like romancing her, doing all the fun stuff. Back when I played it was so hard but now we're like one heartbeat and it's like a second honeymoon."

    Whenever a game became more than just a game, that's when Craig really excelled. He simply couldn't be stopped during the 1988 season, being named the NFL Offensive Player of the Year by the Associated Press and amassing 172 total yards in another Super Bowl win. He followed that up with a third ring in 1990, continuing to burn overmatched defenses with his feet and with his hands. The fellow greats with whom he shared the spotlightLott, Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, John Taylorstill remain in contact today.

    "I'm kind of over the playing aspect; I just wish I could see some of the guys more," Craig said. "Ronnie, Joe, JerryI see them from time to time. We made the transition and we've been pretty successful but I wish other guys could stay here and just reunite. Alumni days, now those were a lot of fun."

    After eight years in San Fran, the 6-foot, 219-pound Craig signed with the then-Los Angeles Raiders for one season and with the Minnesota Vikings for two before retiring in 1993. Near the end of his career, he was plagued by injuries and says he might have done things differently during those last few years if he had the chance.

    "When I got injured my last year with the Niners, I was a little bull-headed and was playing with my bum knee," he recalled. "I wasn't 100%, and with what I know now, I would have waited until I was fully healthy. It kind of was a distraction for me because I couldn't give 110%. I should have just rested my knee and then got healthy and came back."

    But that isn't what Craig's distinguished career will be known for. He's remembered as an invaluable, all-purpose running back who helped one of the most storied franchises in sports reach ultimate glory. He was never bigger than the team, never cared about individual accolades over team success.

    Still a workout fanatic in his mid-40s, Craig reveled in using his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield to help diversify the offense. "I took pride in being the most conditioned athlete on both sides of the field. I knew how valuable it was that I ran good routes, understood the defense, was able to pick up blitzers and protected Joe Montana," he said. "Joe knew exactly where I was all the time; if he got in trouble, he knew where to find me."

    With such a detailed job responsibility, some young players would have struggled to keep all those duties straight. But Craig mastered it in 1985, becoming the first running back to gain over 1,000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards in the same season. His legacy as a football star will never be tarnished, but he knows it's the reputation you leave behind as a person that will be remembered.

    "I have more to offer than just being a superstar football player," Craig stated. "I take the time to talk to anybody and give them the respect that they deserve. I treat people like they're the superstar, not me," added Craig, a member of the NFL's 1980s All-Decade Team.

    Proud and happy to be a family man, Craig enjoys running into fans at various events and says "people are just amazed that I take the time to ask them how they're doing. It blows them away that I talk to them like another human being."

    Craig is quick to rave about the aura and personalities of his former teammates Montana and Rice. He compared Montana to legends like Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky and Barry Bonds, citing those athletes' abilities to make everyone around them better.

    "Joe is the kind of guy that motivated everybody with his presence. It's amazing how Joe can bring the best out of people just with his presence," Craig offered.

    As for Rice, it was Craig who took him under his wing during his second year in the league. The two trained together, and a few chapters of Rice's upcoming book are devoted to their intense training sessions. Who knows, maybe those three larger-than-life 49ers will one day be next to each other in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    "I look at the Hall of Fame saying, 'you have to change the game,' and I think I changed the game," Craig said. "I've caught almost 600 balls (566) and I did it in [fewer] years than guys ahead of me. Joe and Ronnie are in, Jerry's coming shortly. Yeah, don't let me be the forgotten guy."

    Admitting a shrine in Canton would be the icing on the cake, Craig clarified that it would mean more to his family and friends than to the man himself. "To be mentioned in the same breaths as Tony Dorsett, Walter Payton, Jim Brown, Barry Sanders and Eric twinkyerson, you'd love to be in that elite fraternity. But I got those three rings and never missed the playoffs in my career. I can share that with my grandchildren and take it to my grave."

    Now 13 years since he retired, Craig remains the only running back to lead the NFL in receptions for a single season, as well as the only one ever to record 100 receiving yards in a Super Bowl.

    Some men were just born to run. ​
  4. DoubleC

    DoubleC i'm ready now...



    And finally, try finding a google reference for Scott Norwood without the phrase "wide right" attached to it. Giants fans, Bills fans and the writers of Ace Ventura, Pet Detective have blamed Norwood for Buffalo's choke in Super Bowl XXV, but the fact that New York had the ball for over 40 minutes of the game may have had something to do with it as well.

    I had a snitch of a time finding any info on Norwood since he retired, finally finding a piece written by Gothamist that claims he was a financial adviser in Virginia up until 2002, participated in several charity golf tourments (All former NFL players must participate in's the law). And he made a "rare public appearance in Buffalo" two years ago for a Jim Kelly charity football game.

    Also, Sports Illustrated ran their own "Where Are They Now" feature a couple years back. According to SI, it took Scott years to deal with the miss, but neither the team nor the fans blame him. He's quoted as saying "How can you measure the health and the happiness of three beautiful children against a field goal? Three kids versus three points? "If everything always worked out for you, then you don't have that sense of appreciation" (aaawwwwwwwww...Good for you, Scott.)

    Since I'm not a SI subscriber, I don't have access to the related story. If someone there has, I'd like to read it...
  5. Omen

    Omen Speeling Be Champions Staff Member

    Jay Novacek - A True Cowboy

    Somewhere amid the hills, canyons and prairie grass you'll find Jay Novacek hard at work and enjoying life in the countryside of his 3,500-acre ranch near Brady, Nebraska. It's the place of Novacek's home and business and it's the life that he's always wanted to have. Most retired NFL players of Novacek's caliber often mention how fortunate they were to spend the best years of their lives getting paid to play a game they love but Novacek has an even greater appreciation for the life he's built with his family on the Upper 84 Ranch.

    The most satisfying thing about the ranch is that I'm doing all the things that I love to do from the horses, to cattle, to hunting and to putting on cattle drives for clients," said Novacek. "When I want to unwind and relax it's on the ranch. If I was to have a vacation and take six days off and do whatever I wanted then it would be on the ranch."

    Novacek, one of the greatest tight ends to put on the Dallas Cowboys jersey, runs Upper 84 Ranch, a private hunting and cattle ranch that provides guests with a variety of outdoor experiences. Guests can hunt for elk, deer, buffalo and several other big-game species, or hunt for geese, quail, ducks, and pheasants. The typical stay at the ranch is a four-day guided hunt that also includes home cooked meals and lodging in a 20,000 square foot apartment that includes a hot tub, pool table, indoor basketball court and archery range. In addition, throughout the year people have the opportunity to participate in cattle drives across the ranch

    For the rest of the story Click Here
  6. Where Are They Now? Mercury Morris

    Have you ever wondered, "What ever happened to ..." some of your all-time favorite Dolphins players? In this exclusive series for, Dol-Fans can finally get the answer to that question about former running back Eugene "Mercury" Morris. A third round draft choice of the Dolphins in 1969, Morris played seven seasons in Miami and helped lead the Dolphins to two world championships.

  7. Walnuts

    Walnuts All-Pro

    they forgot to add the various

    *snnnnnnnorrrrrrt*s and *sniiiiiiifffffff*s


    I forot about the
  8. Saintsfan1972

    Saintsfan1972 BREESUS SAVES

    Randall Cunningham: Following his faith

    Few players brought more excitement to the game. Now Randall Cunningham is seeking to bring hope to others. After spending 16 pro seasons helping redefine the quarterback position, he is putting his leadership skills to an even greater test.

    Since calling it quits following the 2001 season, Cunningham briefly dabbled in the music business, opening a recording studio and even producing a musical group called Set Free. But the man who was chosen NFL MVP in 1990 soon decided to embark on a different mission.

    In 2004, Cunningham, a born-again Christian, was ordained a Protestant minister. He is currently a senior pastor at Remnant Ministeries in Las Vegas, a multi-cultural, non-denominatonal recording church located in a building called The Cupbearer.

    "It was something God called me to do," said Cunningham, who quarterbacked the Eagles, Vikings, Cowboys and Ravens. "I was told when I was a kid, but I wasn't really trying to listen back then."

    With a congregation of 400-500 people after just three years, Remant is one of the fastest growing churches in Las Vegas, and specializes in worship and praise. In addition to Sunday church services, the facility also plays host to live concerts and includes a state-of-the-art recording facility for Christian groups who wish to record music.

    But the four-time Pro Bowl selection, who retired as the NFL's all-time leader in rushing yards (4,928) and carries (775) for the quarterback position, has not completely forgotten his athletic past. He coaches track and field, specifically the high and long jump, at the Calvin Christian Fellowship High School.

    "If I hadn't received a scholarship in football, I would have received it in track," said Cunningham, who starred in football collegiately at UNLV. "It is actually my favorite sport."

    With the rest of his time devoted to wife Felicity and their three children -- Randall II, Vashti and Grace (another baby is on the way) -- Cunningham is truly at peace with himself. After making believers out of fans iwith his exploits on the football field, he is using words to reach a different audience.

    David Mosse,
  9. DawkinsINT

    DawkinsINT Tebow free since 9/5/2015.

    Too bad he couldn't take the Eagles to the Promised Land. He was one of the most exciting QBs ever though.
  10. Platoon 86

    Platoon 86 Loony

    Barry Switzer: Living the good life
  11. Platoon 86

    Platoon 86 Loony

    Art Donovan: Living the good life
  12. Chrisbob

    Chrisbob Fuck Dallas

    A bit on my all time favourite player, Gary Clark:


    From the NFL Players Website:

    And a nice piece from






    That catch versus the Steelers maybe my favourite of the lot!​
  13. Dougerrrr

    Dougerrrr Laus Deo

    Although this article is a few years does give you some idea what Franco Harris and Lydell Mitchell were doing.
    The former Steelers' fullback aims to revive Parks Sausages
    When Hall of Fame fullback Franco Harris learned last year that Parks Sausages Co. was on the block, he didn't know that it was the first black-owned company in the U.S. to be publicly traded. Nor did he have any idea that Parks, on the verge of bankruptcy, was the fragile mainstay of a depressed inner-city neighborhood in Baltimore. Harris simply remembered that as a kid in Mt. Holly, N.J., he used to hear the same plaintive voice on the radio, over and over: ``More Parks Sausages, Mom...Please?'' Says Harris: ``It was a business with a brand name.''

    When Harris and Lydell Mitchell, his former teammate at Pennsylvania State University, came shopping for Parks, few in Baltimore knew more about them than their football brand names. Harris was a slashing runner who led the Pittsburgh Steelers to four Super Bowl victories. Mitchell, who played for the Baltimore Colts, was an all-time great halfback. Few were aware that Harris majored in hotel administration and food service at Penn State. Or that he had been chief executive of Superbakery Inc., a $1.5 million doughnut business that he had expanded nationally, passing $10 million in sales in six years. (Mitchell was its marketing chief.)

    But by the time Harris, 46, and Mitchell, 47, appeared in bankruptcy court to nail down the $1.7 million purchase of the sausage-maker's assets, the city was past looking at their feats with pigskin and more anxious to see how they would fare with pork. Judge James F. Schneider O.K.'d the deal in an emotional hearing on July 24. ``I'm delighted to see you, sir,'' he said to Harris. And to Mitchell, who will run Parks: ``Welcome home to you.''

    Now comes the tough part: reviving a regional operation in a business dominated by national brands and getting a nation of cholesterol-counters to rekindle its love affair with the fat-dripping breakfast wienie. The trick, says Harris, will be to develop new brands and new flavors, perhaps some of them low-fat or nonpork. Then they'll piggyback sausages onto Superbakery's national distribution and hit the airwaves again with the resuscitated ``More Parks Sausages, Mom'' ads, which have not been heard for five years.

    That's the strategy. But before Harris and Mitchell buy airtime, they must whip the beleaguered Baltimore operation into shape. Founded in 1951 by Henry Parks, an African-American marketer, the company has been through a corporate meat grinder in the past decade. Ownership has fluctuated, with Parks Sausages appearing as an asset of companies as diverse as Sara Lee Corp. and Canadian Pacific Corp. Worse, in 1990, the city of Baltimore gave Parks the boot to make room for the new Orioles stadium at Camden Yards. Parks trundled off to the troubled Park Heights neighborhood and built a sparkling $16 million plant--an apparent triumph of urban planning. But the move left it with an unwieldy $7.8 million debt. Larger rivals also beat the company out of its crucial contracts with Domino's Pizza Inc. and Pizza Hut Inc.

    UNSCREWING LIGHTBULBS. Sales fell from $28 million in 1990 to some $20 million five years later, with Parks losing $1 million a year. Things got so bad that CEO Raymond Haysbert ordered half the lightbulbs in his office unscrewed to save electricity. Finally, in 1995, Haysbert bought out Sara Lee's 45% share for a meager $250,000 and advertised Parks's sale in The Wall Street Journal. He got nine offers. Most buyers wanted just the brand name and the recipe for sage-flavored sausage. But the city of Baltimore, a creditor, insisted the buyers commit to the Park Heights plant in exchange for loan forgiveness. One investor group agreed to the terms, but couldn't find financing in time to close.

    That left Franco Harris. He was eager to move beyond his bakery business, which sells vitamin-fortified doughnuts and muffins to school districts nationwide. Superbakery had benefited from preferential financing for minority businesses, but it was Harris' celebrity that sold the goods, and he is still intensely involved in running the bakery.

    Harris was willing to make a go of it in Baltimore. The price was low, and he figured by investing in the community, he could nurture team harmony and perhaps extract concessions from the plant's 130 workers and their union. During negotiations, however, Haysbert was running out of money. On May 24, he closed the plant. ``Our credit was shot,'' he says. ``Suppliers want the money C.O.D., prewired.'' After Harris reached a preliminary agreement to buy Parks, he lent it money to reopen.

    Now, it's game time for Harris, and both the players and spectators appear optimistic. City officials were encouraged by Harris' connections. Says Daniel P. Henson III, Baltimore's commissioner of housing: ``He has marketing and distribution set up already.'' Kurt Funderburg, director of research at Ferris, Baker Watts Inc., a Baltimore brokerage, agrees that Parks is starting out on a solid footing. He adds that Harris ``is pretty well thought of in the food industry'' and has ``some business acumen beyond the marquee value of his name.''

    When will all this happen? Harris won't say. But radio listeners will know that Parks is up and running when they hear that familiar, whining voice asking Mom for more sausages.

    By Stephen Baker in Pittsburgh and Roy Furchgott in Baltimore
  14. Dougerrrr

    Dougerrrr Laus Deo

    John Stallworth

    John Stallworth - Leader And Winner
    Michael Donnelly

    John Stallworth was the epitome of a champion during his 14 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. A speedy and prolific wide receiver, Stallworth retired from the NFL after the 1987 season having posted 537 receptions for 8,723 yards and 63 touchdowns to finish at the top of several playoff, Super Bowl and Steelers receiving records.

    If you consider what Stallworth is doing these days, it may come as a bit of a surprise but not when you consider how he's going about doing the job. You'll see it stems from the leadership of a man who was an All-Pro, four-time Pro Bowler and two-time Steelers MVP that also played in six AFC championship games and won four Super Bowls (IX, X, XIII, and XIV) during the 1970s.

    "Certainly we had talent but other teams had talent too," said Stallworth about his time with the Steelers. "The leadership we had with the guys on the team, with Chuck Noll, with the Rooney's and the respect for people made for a good environment."

    Today, Stallworth continues to lead in winning fashion as the Co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Madison Research Corporation, a highly successful engineering and information technology company headquartered in Huntsville, Ala.

    "The federal government has many plans for missile systems, aviation systems and space exploration that involve a lot of procurement and services to support those activities," said Stallworth. "At Madison we provide engineering, information technology, logistical and a bevy of other services to try to support them. We bid on contracts and the one's we win, we get a chance to provide the people to help get it all done. We're basically a government contractor. We do business with the Army, Space and Missile Defense Command, Air Force, Navy, The Center for Disease Control and Prevention and NASA to name a few."

    Stallworth, his wife and a business partner formed the technology company the year before he retired from the Steelers. They got their first contract during his last season in the NFL in 1987. Once the football season was over, Stallworth retired from the game, took a week off and then immediately started working full-time for MRC.

    "I knew where I wanted to be geographically and that was in the Huntsville area," said Stallworth. "I also wanted to start my own business which is why I went back to school during my time in Pittsburgh and got my MBA. With those two decisions I started looking for opportunities. In Huntsville with two arms of the federal government in a major NASA center and the army's aviation and missile command, they had a small business impetus needed for a support system and I took advantage of those opportunities."

    Under Stallworth's guidance, MRC has grown from a small business to over 650 employees with operations in six regional offices scattered across the country. "My role is primarily one of strategic planning and mapping out where we need to be in the future and putting us in position to get there," Stallworth said.

    Stallworth spends a lot of his time speaking with people at the head level of the businesses MRC works with and maintaining strong relationships. But he also emphasizes the need to be a good role model for his employees. "Valuing relationships is something that you learn being a part of a team and we had a fairly successful one in Pittsburgh so a lot of those same attributes carry over to what we do right now," said Stallworth. "Everybody wants respect and to be acknowledged for the job that they do and we try our best to do that and it starts with me."

    The success and accolades that Stallworth earned as a Steeler were awarded to him often throughout his playing days. The success has also followed him into his days as a leader at MRC but it took a little longer than expected for Stallworth to earn the one accolade a retired star covets the most. A place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame was the one thing missing from Stallworth's resume. During the first few years of eligibility Stallworth highly anticipated the chance to be elected but after being let down numerous times, the anticipation began to wane. In his eighth year as a finalist, Stallworth got the call he had long been waiting for, election into the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2002.
  15. ravenfan52

    ravenfan52 Perennial All Pro

    Scott Mitchell/Stoney Case

    Scott Mitchell

    He wore No. 19 and was the coach's hand-picked choice in 1999 to lead the Ravens upward.

    Pffft. Scott Mitchell started two games, bombed out and was benched, never to play for the Ravens again.

    Eight years later and out of football, Mitchell still feels the sting.

    "Being benched [by coach Brian Billick] was devastating," he said. "I had always thought of myself as part of the solution, not the problem.

    "But that moment provided a gut check, too. I rededicated myself and played another two years [in Cincinnati]."

    Now 39, Mitchell owns a land development firm in Orlando, Fla., where he lives so close to Disney World that he can watch the nightly fireworks at the Magic Kingdom from his back yard.

    Football wasn't quite the fairy-tale life he had imagined, but after an 11-year pro career, Mitchell, 6 feet 6, still found it hard to quit.

    "You almost wish you were injured so you'd know definitively that you can't play anymore," he said. "My last year [2001], I contacted every NFL team and offered to fly in for a tryout. Nothing.

    "Finally, one morning I got up and said, 'It's over.' Then I sat on the grass and had a good 20-minute cry."

    Then Mitchell thought: I can do anything except play football.

    "I'll probably miss playing for the rest of my life," he said. "But I've moved on."

    Married and the father of two, he coaches his 4-year-old's flag football team. The job is a hoot, Mitchell said.

    "It's really a bunch of kids all running in the wrong direction," he said. "I'm the quarterback and I hand the ball off to one of them and then ... all hell breaks loose. It's like herding cats."

    All hell could have broken loose with the Ravens when Mitchell asked to wear No. 19 - the same as that worn by Baltimore Colts Hall of Famer John Unitas.

    "I'd worn 19 all my life," Mitchell said. "So I met with John and said, 'I'm getting some grief about wearing your number. Please understand that in no way would I ever dishonor it.' "

    Mitchell recalled Unitas' gruff response:

    "It's the dumbest thing in the world that people are concerned about this. I don't give a damn if you wear my number."


    Stoney Case

    About 10 quarterbacks ago, the Ravens handed the job to Stoney Case. He was tall and good-looking, with a slew of college records -- a poster boy for the young franchise.

    That was in 1999. Case won his first start, against Cleveland - a game that gave Brian Billick his first victory as Ravens head coach. The next week, the Ravens won again as Case threw a 54-yard touchdown pass to defeat Atlanta in overtime.

    But two defeats followed, including a humbling loss to Kansas City on national TV in which Case threw for a couple of touchdowns - to the other team. That night, he completed 15 of 37 passes for 103 yards.

    End of Stoney. Case closed.

    Relegated to backup duty, he signed with Detroit at season's end.

    Now 35, Case plays in the Arena Football League, starting last year for Tampa Bay before being sidelined with a shoulder separation. "I may play for another year or two," he said. "I have the rest of my life to do something else."

    Case, who is single, lives in Phoenix and enjoys golfing, water-skiing and hunting elk in New Mexico. It's a somewhat carefree life for a man who appeared in only 24 NFL games.

    "I played six years in that league and invested my money well," he said. "Whatever I make now in the AFL is icing on the cake."

    His fondest memory of Baltimore? Maybe the crabs.

    "Every restaurant I went to in that city, if the owner recognized me, he'd bring out his signature crab dish," Case said. "That was cool."

    His worst recollection? The dreadful 35-8 loss to Kansas City.

    "I know that game hurt my career because everyone watched it," Case said. "A lot of coaches have told me that that game sticks in their minds.

    "I did make mistakes that night, but everyone did. I hit, like, one of my first 11 passes - and I was on the ground 11 times. No excuse, I was missing guys, but I was getting beat up, too.

    "It's hard to throw from your back, it really is."

  16. The Mullet

    The Mullet Reptile Guru

  17. Crowned

    Crowned Doesn't give a shit.

    I thought this was going to be about GIF members.
  18. hermhater

    hermhater Guest

    Well I think The Mullet has been gone for awhile, maybe he's just cfreaking in?

  19. The Mullet

    The Mullet Reptile Guru

    I'm confused. Should be used to it by now.