Now that we’ve all calmed down from the Super Bowl and are able to think clearly now I’d like to bring something up that grinded my gears leading up to the game. We all remember how Richard Sherman said he was the best corner in the game and in my honest opinion I think he is.
I have no problem with him or what he said.
What I ended up being annoyed with was how not once did the four letter network mention former Tampa Bay Buccaneers corner Ronde Barber when they were comparing Sherman to the all time great corners. Barber played 16 seasons and had one heck of a career, yet it’s my belief that the reason why he was left out was because he never did anything to bring attention to himself. This future Hall of Famer deserves to be in the conversation for greatest of all time, and I’ll tell you why
Barber came into the league in back in 1997 being drafted by the Buccaneers in the 3rd round (pick 66) and he stayed with the team throughout his whole career. His first few years with the Bucs weren’t the best I’ll admit, but his work ethic allowed him to become a dominating presence on the field. Being used in mostly package plays his first few years Barber piled up eight and half sacks his first 4 years, with an impressive five and a half during the 2000 season. From that season on Barber was a ball hawk darting all over the field not afraid to make a tackle, unlike most corners (looking at you Primetime)
If you add all of Barber’s stats from his 16 years as a pro, the argument writes itself. 1,005 tackles, 28 sacks, 139 pass defenses, 47 interceptions and a whopping eight of those went for touchdowns, which places him in the esteemed company of Rod Woodson (12) Charles Woodson (11) and Deion Sanders (9).
Barber is also the only defensive back to have over 20 sacks and over 40 interceptions., 28 and 47 respectfully. Barber also currently holds the record for most consecutive starts as a corner with 200 and most by a defensive back with 215 when he finished the 2012 season as a Free Safety.
Now I can understand if you don’t want to call him the greatest corner of all time, but how can you not think that he at least should have his name mentioned with Woodson, Sanders, Bailey, and probably Sherman when his career is over.
Ronde Barber’s career speaks for itself, yet most people forget about him seeing as when he was in his prime. He was on the same team with larger then life personalities I.e. Warren Sapp, and Keyshawn Johnson. Barber was never one for the limelight and let his play on the field do all of his talking. The most he ever did was point to the name on his back after an outstanding play.
It was a sad day when number 20 decided to hang it up, but I don’t think anyone who is a fan of the Buccaneers will ever forgot all he did for the organization. In many Buccaneer fans eyes his 97 yard interception return for a touchdown against the Eagles in the 2002 NFC Championship is on the same level as the Super Bowl win.
So the next time you are in a debate with your friends talking about the greatest corners ever be sure to mention Barber. When people try to shut it down all you have to do is say “check his stats.” Doesn’t need any more explaining other than that.
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