I will cover the NFL Draft this coming week. But, being as my childhood hero just retired for the NFL, I feel obligated to discuss the retirement.
Brian Dawkins was a model football player. He was a leader on the field for his team and off the field for his dedication to the communities of Philadelphia and Denver when he signed with the Broncos.
“B-Dawk” as many refer to him, was one of the most loved athletes in the city of Philadelphia maybe only behind Rocky, who wasn’t even a real person. Brian Dawkins was the heart and soul of the Eagles for over 10 years. As long as I have been watching football, Dawkins has played. I was about just one year old when Dawkins made his debut in the National Football League.
My first memory of Dawkins is during that season, believe it or not. His rookie season, “Weapon X”, another popular nickname for the homicidal safety, made a successful open field tackle against a running back that I think you maybe have heard of, Barry Sanders.
Ya, you read that right. A rookie took down the great Barry Sanders in the open field. That was when the city began to believe.
I’d now like to share some of my favorite moments of Brian Dawkins.
I remember in an NFC championship game against the Atlanta Falcons, where the quarterback was still Michael Vick.
The Falcons were the fastest team in football with players like Warrick Dunn, Vick and Alge Crumpler.
One play in that game set the tempo early.
Vick dropped back and fired a dart about 40-50 yards down field.
Alge caught the ball. Dawkins caught Alge.
Dawk met Crumpler with a MASSIVE hit which left him down on the field for a couple minutes. While he wasn’t injured, the Falcons became demoralized, which led to an Eagles’ Super Bowl appearance.
There are so many Dawkins moments that I could dissect. But, I will randomly provide the readers with other Dawk moments as my blogs continue to come.
Thank you, Brian, for your years of service to this great game. You are the reason for my random yell into the air before every quarter of football or lacrosse that I play. You are the reason why I hit with such intensity. You are the reason that I strive to compete every second I’m on the field. Most importantly, you are the reason I have embraced a leadership role wherever I go. You taught me to be a leader. I couldn’t have asked for a better model.