This Week in NFL History: August 27 through September 2

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This Week in NFL History
Oct.14, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins former player Zach Thomas (left) and Jason Taylor (right) await before being introduced into the Dolphins honor roll during half time game against the the St. Louis Rams at Sun Life Stadium. Dolphins won 17-14. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Relive and recapture iconic moments. Recall an anniversary of an event that forever changed the landscape of the NFL. It’s all here in This Week in NFL History. This Week in NFL History will look back at some of the most memorable events that have occurred during this week historically in professional football.


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This Week in NFL History

August 27

1967-Defensive end Robert (Rob) Burnett (Syracuse: 1986-89, selected 129th overall by the Cleveland Browns in the 1990 NFL Draft; Browns: 1990-95, Ravens: 1996-2001, Dolphins: 2002-03) born in Livingston, New Jersey

Career Stats: 604 combined tackles (508 solo), 73 sacks, one interception, six passes defended, nine forced fumbles, 15 fumbles recovered

Burnett was a Pro Bowl selection in 1994. He was a Second-team All-Pro in 2000 and won Super Bowl XXXV.

1980-Defensive back Rashean Mathis (Bethune-Cookman: 1999-2002, selected 39th overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2003 NFL Draft; Jaguars: 2003-12, Lions: 2013-15) born in Jacksonville, Florida

Career Stats: 650 combined tackles (574 solo), one sack, 32 interceptions, 133 passes defended, nine forced fumbles, five fumbles, four defensive touchdowns

Mathis was a Pro Bowler and a First-team All-Pro in 2006

1987-Running back Darren McFadden (Arkansas: 2005-07, selected fourth overall by the Oakland Raiders in the 2008 NFL Draft; Raiders: 2008-14, Cowboys: 2015-present) born in Little Rock, Arkansas

Career Stats: 1,301 carries for 5,423 yards and 28 touchdowns; 254 receptions for 2,114 yards and five touchdowns

August 28

1955The sudden death overtime rule was used for the first time in a preseason game between the New York Giants and Los Angeles Rams. The Rams won 23-17 three minutes into overtime.

1980-Linebacker Tully Banta-Cain (California: 1999-2002, selected 239th overall by the New England Patriots in the 2003 NFL Draft; Patriots: 2003-06, 49ers: 2007-08, Patriots: 2009-10) born in Mountain View, California

Career Stats: 250 combined tackles (177 solo), 27.5 sacks, one interception, five passes defended, four forced fumbles, two fumbles recovered, one defensive touchdown

Banta-Cain won two Super Bowls (XXXVIII, XXXIX) in his first tour with the Patriots.

August 29

1956-Placekicker Edward (Eddie) Murray (Tulane: 1976-79, selected 166th overall by the Detroit Lions in the 1980 NFL Draft, selected 26th overall by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the 1980 CFL Draft; Lions: 1980-91, Chiefs: 1992, Buccaneers: 1992, Cowboys: 1993, Eagles: 1994, Redskins: 1995, Vikings: 1997, Cowboys: 1999, Redskins: 2000) born in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Career Stats: 352 field goals made in 466 attempts (75.5 percent); 538 extra points made in 545 attempts (98.7 percent)

Murray was a three Second-team All-Pro, a two-time Pro Bowl selection (1980, 1989), and the Most Valuable Player of the 1980 Pro Bowl (the only rookie to ever win the award). He won Super Bowl XXVIII with the Cowboys and named to the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team.

1962-Linebacker Carl Banks (Michigan State: 1980-83; selected third overall by the New York Giants in the 1984 NFL Draft; Giants: 1984-92, Redskins: 1993, Browns: 1994-95) born in Flint, Michigan

Career Stats: 860 combined tackles (826 solo), 39.5 sacks, three interceptions, one forced fumble, six fumbles recovered, one defensive touchdown

Banks was a Pro Bowl selection and All-Pro in 1987. He won two Super Bowls (XXI, XXV) with the Giants and was named to the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team. Banks played alongside Hall of Fame linebackers Lawrence Taylor and Harry Carson but hasn’t been inducted in Canton himself.

1981-Defensive end Jeremiah (Jay) Ratliff (Auburn: 2000-04, selected 224th overall by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2005 NFL Draft; Cowboys: 2005-13, Bears: 2013-15) born in St. Petersburg, Florida

Career Stats: 280 combined tackles (192 solo), 35 sacks, 16 passes defended, four forced fumbles, 13 fumbles recovered

Ratliff was a four-time Pro Bowl selection (2008-11) and a First-team All-Pro in 2009.

August 30

1977-Running back Shaun Alexander (Alabama: 1996-99, selected 19th overall by the Seattle Seahawks in the 2000 NFL Draft; Seahawks: 2000-07, Redskins: 2008) born in Florence, Kentucky

Career Stats: 2,187 carries for 9,453 yards and 100 touchdowns; 215 receptions for 1,520 yards and 12 touchdowns

Alexander was the 2005 NFL Most Valuable Player and the Offensive Player of the Year. He was a three-time Pro Bowl selection (2003-05) and a two-time First-team All-Pro (2004, 2005). He led the NFL in rushing yards in 2005 (1,880) and rushing touchdowns in 2001 (14) and 2005 (27). Alexander was named to the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team.

1984-Offensive tackle Joe Staley (Central Michigan: 2003-06, selected 28th overall by the San Francisco 49ers in the 2007 NFL Draft; 49ers: 2007-present) born in Rockford, Michigan

Career Stats: Staley has started all 143 of his career NFL games

Staley is a five-time Pro Bowl selection (2011-15) and a three-time Second-team All-Pro (2011-13)

1985-Offensive lineman Duane Brown (Virginia Tech: 2004-07, selected 26th overall by the Houston Texans in the 2008 NFL Draft; Texans: 2008-present) born in Richmond, Virginia

Career Stats: Brown has started all 132 of his career NFL games

Brown is a three-time Pro Bowl selection (2012-14) and a First-team All-Pro in 2012

2002-Offensive lineman David (Dave) Dalby (UCLA: 1969-71, selected 100th overall by the Oakland Raiders in the 1972 NFL Draft; Raiders: 1972-85) died at age 51 in Orange County, California (b. 1950)

Career Stats: Dalby started in 135 of his career 205 NFL games

Dalby replaced Hall of Fame center Jim Otto in the Raiders’ starting lineup. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1977 and won three Super Bowls (XI, XV, XVIII) in his career.

August 31

1946-Head coach Thomas (Tom) Coughlin (Jaguars: 1995-2002, Giants: 2004-15) born in Waterloo, Iowa

Career Record: 182-157 (Jaguars regular season: 68-60, Jaguars postseason record: 4-4, Giants regular season: 102-90. Giants postseason record: 8-3)

Coughlin, a coaching disciple of Bill Parcells, was the first Jaguars head coach in franchise history. He led the Jaguars to four playoff appearances in eight seasons, including two appearances in the AFC Championship Game. Coughlin is the all-time winningest coach in Jaguars history. He is best remembered as the coach of the New York Giants, who he led to two Super Bowl victories (XLII, XLVI). He is tied with his mentor Parcells for the most postseason wins in Giants franchise history. His .531 winning percentage is the second highest among Giants head coaches who coached at least five seasons with the team. Coughlin is currently the Jaguars vice president of football operations.

1952-Defensive tackle Gary (Big Hands) Johnson (Grambling State: 1971-74, selected eighth overall by the San Diego Chargers in the 1975 NFL Draft; Chargers: 1975-83, 49ers: 1984-85) born in Shreveport, Louisiana (d. 2010)

Career Stats: 16 sacks, two interceptions, 13 fumbles recovered

Johnson was named to the NFL All-Rookie Team in 1975. He was a four-time Pro Bowl selection (1980-83), a two-time First-team All-Pro (1980, 1981), and a Second-team All-Pro in 1982. Johnson was named to the Chargers 40th Anniversary and 50th Anniversary Teams and inducted into the Chargers Hall of Fame. He won Super Bowl XIX with the 49ers.

1983-Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (Pittsburgh: 2002-03, selected third overall by the Arizona Cardinals in the 2004 NFL Draft; Cardinals: 2004-present) born in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Career Stats: 1,125 receptions for 14,389 yards and 104 touchdowns.

Fitzgerald currently leads all active players in receiving yards and ranked second among active players in receiving touchdowns. He is a 10-time Pro Bowl selection (2005, 2007-13, 2015-16), a First-team All-Pro in 2008, and a two-time Second-team All-Pro (2009, 2011). Fitzgerald twice led the NFL in receptions (103 in 2005, 107 in 2016) and receiving touchdowns (12 in 2008, 13 in 2009). He owns several Cardinals franchise records including career receiving yards, receiving touchdowns, and receptions. Fitzgerald helped lead the Cardinals to an appearance in Super Bowl XLIII, the franchise’s first championship game appearance since winning the NFL Championship in 1947.

September 1

1903-Head coach Raymond (Ray) Flaherty (Redskins: 1936-42) born in Lamont, Washington (d. 1994)

Career record: 87-37-5

Flaherty was a three-time All-Pro as a player (1928, 1929, 1932) with the NFL’s New York Yankees and New York Giants. He won the 1934 NFL Championship with the Giants. Flaherty won two NFL Championships (1937, 1942) as Redskins head coach. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1976.

1960-Linebacker Karl Mecklenburg (Minnesota: 1978-81, selected 310th overall by the Denver Broncos in the 1983 NFL Draft (Broncos: 1983-94) born in Seattle, Washington

Career Stats: 1,118 combined tackles (1,104 solo), 79 sacks, five interceptions, 16 forced fumbles, 14 fumbles recovered, two defensive touchdowns

Mecklenburg was a six-time Pro Bowl selection (1985-87, 1989, 1991, 1993) and a four-time First-team All-Pro (1985-87, 1989). His 79 sacks are the second most in franchise history.

1965-Linebacker Hardy Nickerson (California: 1983-86, selected 122nd overall by the Pittsburgh Steelers; Steelers: 1987-92, Buccaneers: 1993-99, Jaguars: 2000-01, Packers: 2002) born in Compton, California

Career Stats: 1,584 combined tackles (1,270 solo), 21 sacks, 12 interceptions, nine passes defended, 19 forced fumbles, 14 fumbles recovered

Nickerson was a five-time Pro Bowl selection (1993, 1996-99) and a four-time All-Pro (1993, 1996, 1997, 1999). He was named to the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team. Nickerson is currently the defensive coordinator at the University of Illinois.

1973-Linebacker Zachary (Zach) Thomas (Texas Tech: 1992-95, selected 154th overall by the Miami Dolphins in the 1996 NFL Draft; Dolphins: 1996-2007, Cowboys: 2008) born in Pampa, Texas

Career Stats: 1,727 combined tackles (1,100 solo), 20.5 sacks, 17 interceptions, 38 passes defended, 16 forced fumbles, eight fumbles recovered, four defensive touchdowns

Thomas was a seven-time Pro Bowl selection (1999-2003, 2005-06), a five-time First-team All-Pro (1998, 1999, 2002, 2005, 2006), and a two-time Second-team All-Pro (2001, 2005). Thomas had more tackles than any Hall of Fame linebacker until Junior Seau was posthumously inducted. He was named to the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team.

1974-Defensive end Jason Taylor (Akron: 1993-96, selected 73rd overall by the Miami Dolphins in the 1997 NFL Draft; Dolphins: 1997-2007, Redskins: 2008, Dolphins: 2009, Jets: 2010, Dolphins: 2011) born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Career Stats: 770 combined tackles (525 solo), 139.5 sacks, eight interceptions, 77 passes defended, 46 forced fumbles, 29 fumbles recovered, nine defensive touchdowns

Taylor was the 2006 NFL Defensive Player of the Year. He was a six-time Pro Bowl selection (2000, 2002, 2004-07), a three-time First-team All-Pro (2000, 2002, 2006), and a Second-team All-Pro in 2001. Taylor led the NFL in sacks in 2002 (18.5) and named to the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team. He was a 2017 inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

1981-Running back Clinton Portis (Miami [FL]: 1998-2001, selected 51st overall by the Denver Broncos in the 2002 NFL Draft; Broncos: 2002-03, Redskins: 2004-10) born in Laurel, Mississippi

Career Stats: 2,230 carries for 9,923 yards and 75 touchdowns; 247 receptions for 2,018 yards and five touchdowns

Portis was the 2002 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, a two-time Pro Bowl selection (2003, 2008), and a Second-team All-Pro in 2008.

1996The Baltimore Ravens defeated the Oakland Raiders 19-14 in their regular season opener after relocating from Cleveland

2006Roger Goodell succeeds Paul Tagliabue as NFL commissioner

September 2

1948-Quarterback Terry Bradshaw (Louisiana Tech: 1967-69, selected first overall by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1970 NFL Draft; Steelers: 1970-83) born in Shreveport, Louisiana

Career Stats: 2,025 completions in 3,901 attempts for 27,989 yards, 212 touchdowns, and 210 interceptions. QB Rating: 70.9. Career record as starter: 121-56 (Steelers regular season: 107-51, Steelers postseason: 14-5)

Bradshaw was the 1978 NFL Most Valuable Player. He was a three-time Pro Bowl selection (1975, 1978, 1979), and a First-team All-Pro in 1978. Bradshaw led the NFL in passing touchdowns in 1978 (28) and 1982 (17). He won four Super Bowls in six years (IX, X, XIII, XIV) and named the MVP of Super Bowls XIII and XIV. Bradshaw was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989, his first year of eligibility. He has been an analyst/co-host of Fox NFL Sunday since 1994.

1960-Running back Eric Dickerson (SMU: 1979-82, selected second overall by the Los Angeles Rams in the 1983 NFL Draft; Rams: 1983-87, Colts: 1987-91, Raiders: 1992, Falcons: 1993) born in Sealy, Texas

Career Stats: 2,996 carries for 13,259 yards and 90 touchdowns; 281 receptions for 2,137 touchdowns and six touchdowns

Dickerson was a six-time Pro Bowl selection (1983, 1984, 1986-89) and a five-time First-team All-Pro (1983, 1984, 1986-88). He set the NFL record for most rushing yards by a rookie (1,808) and the NFL single season rushing record when he ran for 2,105 yards in 1984. Dickerson also led the NFL in rushing yards in 1983, 1986 (1,821), and 1988 (1,659). He was the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year in 1983 and the NFL Offensive Player of the Year in 1986. Dickerson was named to the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team and inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1999.

Curtis Rawls is a Managing Editor for cover32 and covers the NFL and New York Giants, like and follow on Facebook and Twitter. Curtis can be followed on Twitter @CuRawls203.

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