Four Players from Tennessee make OVC’s Top 10 NFL Greats

January 13th, 2015

Three Tennessee State players and one from Tennessee Tech are included in a list of the Top 10 NFL Greats from the OVC released Monday.

The list was compiled by the OVC office and includes players and coaches from 1968-2015.

The TSU players are Claude Humphrey, Richard Dent and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and the one from Tennessee Tech is Jim Youngblood.

Humphrey, a defensive lineman from Memphis, was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2014. He was the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 1968 and played until 1981 for the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles.

Dent, a defensive end, was a four-time Pro Bowl selection. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011. He was the most valuable player in Super Bowl XX after helping the Chicago Bears defeat New England 46-10. Dent finished his 14-year NFL career (1983-97) with 137.5 sacks after playing with Chicago, San Francisco, Indianapolis and Philadelphia.

Rodgers-Cromartie, a cornerback, just completed his seventh season in the NFL. He has played in two Super Bowls (with Arizona in Super Bowl XLIII and Denver in XLVIII) and made the Pro Bowl in 2009. Rodgers-Cromartie has 21 career interceptions.

Youngblood, a linebacker, was a second-round pick in the 1973 draft and spent 12 seasons in the NFL. He played for the L.A. Rams and Washington Redskins and finished his career with 14 interceptions. Youngblood is in the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame.

The others on the list: Morehead State quarterback Phil Simms, played for the N.Y. Giants (1979-93) and was MVP of Super Bowl XXI; Eastern Illinois coach Mike Shanahan, led Denver to back-to-back Super Bowl wins; EIU quarterback Tony Romo, four-time Pro Bowl selection still playing for Dallas; EIU coach Sean Payton, led the New Orleans Saints to Super Bowl XLIV win; Eastern Kentucky defensive tackle/end Wally Chambers, three-time Pro Bowl selection who played for Chicago and Tampa Bay (1973-79); EKU defensive end Chad Bratzke, recorded 296 career tackles playing for the Giants and Colts (1994-2003).

Courtesy of: Mike Organ

Published by: The Tennessean

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