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Aug 10 in Pats History: Tony George

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jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
Today in Patriots History
The 1999 Draft


The third and final draft of the Pete Carroll era was a mixed bag. Two first round picks were used on Damien Woody (a center who had to be moved to guard because he was unable to master the shotgun snap) and Andy Katzenmoyer (whose stock had dropped dramatically his senior year, and was constantly sidelined with injuries). The third round pick started one game in two seasons, and four selections in the latter rounds contributed next to nothing for the Patriots. In addition on September 3rd the Patriots were awarded CB J'Juan Cherry in the Supplemental Draft; he never got on the field for a single snap in the NFL. That cost the Patriots their fourth round pick in the 2000 draft. Trading up to select Kevin Faulk in the second round is the only decision that kept this draft from being a total disaster.



Happy 46th birthday to Tony George
Born August 10, 1975 in Cincinnati
Patriot FS, 1999-2000; uniform #41
Pats 3rd round (91st overall) selection of the 1999 draft, from Florida




Houston Antonio 'Tony' George Jr. was a Florida Gator for Steve Spurrier's 1996 national championship team, and was First Team All-SEC his senior year. He played in 31 games with one start over two seasons in Foxborough, then in 2001 was allocated to the Frankfurt Galaxy of NFL Europe. George was in training camps for the Pats, Panthers and Titans from 2001 to 2003, but he never again played in the NFL. He retired after missing the cut with the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL in 2003.




  • He started his own company, H.E.A.T. Pro Fitness.
  • He is a certified trainer, certified strength and conditioning specialist, and AFAA. George has started his own foundation, Patriotic Mentoring, to assist with mentoring and developing youth and young adults.
  • George lives in Fort Mill, South Carolina. He is the father of three, two daughters and one son.



Tony George was always fascinated by the process of turning himself into a physical strong safety. And when his playing days were over, he began to train other athletes.​

But at one point, he had to take care of his mind.​

Two seasons with the New England Patriots took more of a toll than he realized. After starting H.E.A.T. Pro Fitness in 2005, he had to step away from his work in 2012 for 18 months.​

“It was catastrophic,” he said. “There were voices in my head and suicidal thoughts. I had to step away so I could see the bright side of things again.”​

He took that time off before returning to work in 2014. H.E.A.T., in Charlotte, N.C., has helped 116 athletes earn college scholarships.​

“I train everyone from everyday people to MMA guys,” George said. “Ray Lewis, Will Smith, guys like that have been through here.​



Patriotic Mentoring | Facebook
 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
I want to get back to the 1999 draft, but first there is this late season 1999 game that I stumbled across while searching for news stories on Tony George. The Patriots had won the AFC East just two years earlier under Pete Carroll, and were only three years removed from playing in the Super Bowl against Green Bay. The division was very competitive, producing all three wild card teams (there were still only three divisions per conference then) The Pats had a winning record (9-7), yet only finished fourth in the East. In '99 the division once gain had zero teams with a losing record. New England stood 6-2 at the bye, a half game behind Miami, and things looked promising.

Then the second half of the season happened.

December 19, 1999:

* When the Patriots have the ball: The running game will be hampered by Faulk's absence, but the Eagles defense, -- without injured Hugh Douglas, --doesn't present any particular problems. Cornerbacks Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent are good, but there's no reason Drew Bledsoe shouldn't have success with the short passing game, as he did against the Colts. The Patriots continue to be hampered by their failings inside the 20, but if Bledsoe is patient, the Patriots should manage their best output since the bye week.​

* When the Eagles have the ball: Under Andy Reid, a former Mike Holmgren assistant with the Packers, the Eagles run a Green Bay version of the West Coast offense. But they do it with less talent. They can run it with Duce Staley (1,136 yards, 4.1 average). And that's especially impressive because opponents play the run tough, knowing they have little to fear from the passing game, which is ranked last in the NFL. Once their top receiver, Charles Johnson (knee), was lost for the season, they were forced to start journeyman Torrance Small and rookie Nate Brown. Quarterback Koy Detmer hasn't taken a snap this season and is just keeping the seat warm while No. 1 draft choice Donovan McNabb recovers from a knee injury. Jeff Dellenbach, who was a bust as a Patriot when Bill Parcells signed him as a free agent, alternates at right guard, which doesn't say much for the Eagles line. Their quarterbacks have been sacked 47 times, and the Eagles average only 15 points a game and rank 29th in total offense. But if Patriots cornerback Tebucky Jones and safety Tony George, pressed into heavy duty because of injuries, can't do the job, it might be close.​


So what happens? In a must-win game against an inferior opponent the Patriots look terrible and lose 24-9, to drop to 7-7. The Pats had lost three straight after the bye, and this would be the second of another three-game losing streak. New England had 11 possessions with four or fewer plays while gifting Philly their fourth win of the year. The game began with Tony Simmons fumbling the opening kickoff away, and it went downhill from there. For the most part the defense did its job, limiting Staley to 3.2 yards per carry and Detmer to 10-29 for 181 yards and two picks (but three TDs) while allowing just 11 first downs overall.

The offense on the other hand was awful. Drew Bledsoe threw four interceptions, lost the ball another time on one of his six sacks, and the team averaged a measly 2.3 yards per carry. All told the Patriots committed six turnovers, turned the ball over two more times on downs, missed a field goal, and four of their six punts were three-and-outs. While losing at home to Buffalo may have been the icing on the cake, this game may have been biggest reason why Pete Carroll was fired.
 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
The four draft picks received as compensation for Bill Parcells

In 1976 Chuck Fairbanks traded Jim Plunkett to San Francisco for four draft picks and a backup QB. The Patriots made excellent use of those draft picks, resulting in some great teams in the late seventies. In 1997 the Pats received four draft picks as compensation for the Jets signing Bill Parcells, but the results were reversed. In the latter case New England squandered those picks on RB Sedrick Shaw (14 games, 236 yards, 0 TD) and G Damon Denson (14 games, 4 starts) in '97, WR Tony Simmons (38 games, 9 starts, 981 yards, 6 TD) in '98, and Andy Katzenmoyer in '99 (24 games, 14 starts, 3.5 tackles). Katzenmoyer did show promise as a rookie before neck injuries ended his NFL career, so it is probably unfair to lump him in with the other three. However, the bottom line is that the Patriots got next to nothing in terms of production from the four draft picks the team received for Tuna.


Pats trade up for Damien Woody

The Patriots began the day with their own draft pick (#20), and #28 which they had previously received from the Jets (and used on Katzenmoyer). New England thought enough of Woody that they traded up three spots to get him, trading away a third and a sixth in order to do so. Woody was a starter from day one, playing for the Pats for five years and getting one Pro Bowl recognition. But wow, he was scary to watch on his shotgun snaps. They were so bad that he and LG Mike Compton had to switch spots whenever the Pats went into the shotgun, giving the opposing defense some extra time to recognize the upcoming play. Woody was a very solid player, but at the same time I can't help but feel as though a team should get more from a mid-first round draft pick. Having to give up a third round pick for him in the process doesn't help matters.


Trading up for Kevin Faulk
On the other hand this trade up worked perfectly, even if it didn't look that way early in Kevin Faulk's career. The Pats moved up six spots from #46 to #52 select the running back from LSU in the second round, sending Tennessee a fourth round pick in order to do so. The Titans used those picks on John Thornton (a defensive tackle who had a much better career with the Bengals than Titans) and CB Donald Mitchell (12 starts in three seasons). The edge in this trade goes to the Patriots, by far.


Mid and Late Round Picks
New England owned two third round picks at the start of the draft, but had traded away their original (#82 overall) to Seattle as part of the Damien Woody trade. The Pats also had the #91 pick of the draft as a result of a 1998 draft day trade that sent CB Jimmy Hitchock to Minnesota. The Patriots used that pick on safety Tony George. The fourth round pick had also been traded away, as part of the Kevin Faulk deal. Trading away draft picks for players you really want is not a bad thing, but it leaves less room for error as you end up with fewer total players.

The Patriots did not have another draft pick until more than half way through the fifth round, #154 overall. The Pats used that on an offensive lineman from Baylor named Derrick Fletcher. He never saw the field in '99, started the first two games of 2000, and was released about a week later.

The Pats had the 11th pick of the sixth round as a result of a trade with the Ravens. Backup tight end Lovett Purnell, a 7th round pick in 1996, was sent to Baltimore for a '99 sixth, #180 overall. The trade itself seemed to be a good one, great value for Purnell. The problem was that it was used on a player who was waived at the end of his rookie training camp and never played in the NFL. The Pats original sixth had been used in the Woody trade.

In the seventh round the Patriots drafted QB Michael Bishop, whose claim to fame was coming in just before the end of the half to throw Hail Mary's, one which actually succeeded. Bishop had a small but vocal fan club with New England, but in reality his NFL career consisted of one season and three completions in eight games played. The Pats also selected Sean Morey with a comp pick at #241 overall. The Marshfield native turned out to be a great late round pick as a special teamer; unfortunately that was with Pittsburgh and Arizona, after being waived by the Patriots.


Supplemental Draft

The Patriots also used a supplemental draft pick on CB J'Juan Cherry. The supplemental draft is for players that did not enter the previous draft, but for whatever reason are no longer eligible to play college football (academic ineligibility, suspended, etcetera). It is more or less like a silent auction, where teams bid with a pick from the next draft for any player they want (or don't bid at all).

The biggest problem with the supplemental draft is that it occurs so late, the player has missed out on being with his new team for his entire rookie offseason. He was drafted on September 3, signed September 9, and activated on September 20 (one day after their week two game). Cherry was a healthy scratch for the next three games, then dressed (but did not play) in the next two. Three days later he was placed on injured reserve with a hip injury. Bill Belichick released Cherry the following offseason, well before the start of training camp.

In order to sign J'Juan Cherry the Patriots forfeited a 2000 fourth round draft pick (#107 overall).
 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
Today in Patriots History
More August 10th Trivia










Happy 34th birthday to Ramon Humber
Born August 10, 1987 in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota
Patriot LB, 2016 (offseason only, uniform #53) and 2018, uniform #50
Signed as a free agent on March 9, 2016

The North Dakota State product played in six regular season games for the Patriots in 2018. He had 105 special team snaps plus two snaps on defense. Humber was also on the postseason roster, appearing in two of the three playoff games and earning a ring in the Super Bowl victory over the Los Angeles Rams.

Prior to signing with the Patriots he had been with the Colts (2009-10) and Saints (2010-2015). The Pats released Humber near the end of training camp in 2016, and he then spent two and a half seasons with Buffalo. New England re-signed Humber in mid-November when Chandler Jones went out with a hip injury. Humber played in 136 games over the course of his ten-year NFL career.



Ramon Humber reacts during the fourth quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff Game against the Los Angeles Chargers at Gillette Stadium on January 13, 2019 in Foxborough.


Nov 14, 2018:

Humber, 31, spent the 2016 offseason with New England after signing with the team on March 9, before being released on Aug 30. The 5-foot-11, 232-pounder most recently played for Buffalo from 2016 through the first nine games of this season before being released on Nov. 10.​

Humber is in his 10th NFL season and has played for Indianapolis (2009-10), New Orleans (2010-15) and Buffalo (2016-18). He originally entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with Indianapolis in 2009 out of North Dakota State. He made the 53-man roster out of training camp as a rookie and played in all 16 games, starting the final two at linebacker, and finished with 22 total tackles and a team-high of 17 special teams tackles. He added three special teams tackles in three postseason games, including Super Bowl XLIV against New Orleans. Humber played in the first two games of the season for Indianapolis in 2010 before being placed on injured reserve. He was signed by New Orleans on Dec. 1, 2010 after being released by Indianapolis on Nov. 9, 2010.​

Overall, Humber has played in 130 NFL games with 28 starts and has accumulated 234 total tackles, 4½ sacks, five passes defensed, two forced fumbles and 77 special teams tackles.​




Other pro football players born August 10 with New England connections:

- Lamar King, 46 (8/10/75)
Born in Boston
22nd overall pick of the 1999 draft by Seattle, out of Saginaw State. The defensive end was the first pick by Mike Holmgren as GM of the Seahawks. King suffered a dislocated shoulder and torn labrum as a rookie, and that was a sign of things to come. Between calf strains and knee problems that led to microfracture surgery, King played in 57 NFL games with 125 tackles and 12 sacks.

- Maury Dubofsky (1909-1970)
Born and raised in Hartford; Weaver High School
Offensive lineman for the New York Giants in the thirties.

- Dunc Annan (1895-1981)
Brown University
The tailback was part of the NFL's first season, playing for several teams from 1920 to 1926.




Some of the other pro football players born on this date include:

- Eddie Meador, 84 (1937)
The six-time Pro Bowl defensive back played from 1959-1970 for the Rams, collecting 46 interceptions and 22 fumble recoveries.

- Samari Rolle, 45 (1976)
Rolle had 31 picks from 1998-2008 with the Titans and Ravens. Asa kid, football was surely always played at family get togethers: five cousins (Chad Johnson, Keyshawn Johnson, Antrel Rolle, Brian Rolle and Myron Rolle) also played in the NFL.

- Chuck Walker, 80 (1941)
DT played from 1964-1975 for the Cardinals and Falcons.

- Walt Harris, 47 (1974)
Played in 193 games from 1996-2008 at CB, mostly for the Bears and Niners.

- Spergon Wynn, 43 (1978)
The sixth of The Brady Six, Wynn had 1 TD and 7 INT in the NFL before spending a few years in the CFL. Fortunately he knew his football limits, and prepared well for a second career.

- Speedy Duncan, 79 (1942)
Averaged 10.9 yards per punt return in his career ('64-'74), leading the league in that category three times.
 

captain stone

Hall of Fame Poster
I want to get back to the 1999 draft, but first there is this late season 1999 game that I stumbled across while searching for news stories on Tony George. The Patriots had won the AFC East just two years earlier under Pete Carroll, and were only three years removed from playing in the Super Bowl against Green Bay. The division was very competitive, producing all three wild card teams (there were still only three divisions per conference then) The Pats had a winning record (9-7), yet only finished fourth in the East. In '99 the division once gain had zero teams with a losing record. New England stood 6-2 at the bye, a half game behind Miami, and things looked promising.

Then the second half of the season happened.

December 19, 1999:

* When the Patriots have the ball: The running game will be hampered by Faulk's absence, but the Eagles defense, -- without injured Hugh Douglas, --doesn't present any particular problems. Cornerbacks Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent are good, but there's no reason Drew Bledsoe shouldn't have success with the short passing game, as he did against the Colts. The Patriots continue to be hampered by their failings inside the 20, but if Bledsoe is patient, the Patriots should manage their best output since the bye week.​

* When the Eagles have the ball: Under Andy Reid, a former Mike Holmgren assistant with the Packers, the Eagles run a Green Bay version of the West Coast offense. But they do it with less talent. They can run it with Duce Staley (1,136 yards, 4.1 average). And that's especially impressive because opponents play the run tough, knowing they have little to fear from the passing game, which is ranked last in the NFL. Once their top receiver, Charles Johnson (knee), was lost for the season, they were forced to start journeyman Torrance Small and rookie Nate Brown. Quarterback Koy Detmer hasn't taken a snap this season and is just keeping the seat warm while No. 1 draft choice Donovan McNabb recovers from a knee injury. Jeff Dellenbach, who was a bust as a Patriot when Bill Parcells signed him as a free agent, alternates at right guard, which doesn't say much for the Eagles line. Their quarterbacks have been sacked 47 times, and the Eagles average only 15 points a game and rank 29th in total offense. But if Patriots cornerback Tebucky Jones and safety Tony George, pressed into heavy duty because of injuries, can't do the job, it might be close.​


So what happens? In a must-win game against an inferior opponent the Patriots look terrible and lose 24-9, to drop to 7-7. The Pats had lost three straight after the bye, and this would be the second of another three-game losing streak. New England had 11 possessions with four or fewer plays while gifting Philly their fourth win of the year. The game began with Tony Simmons fumbling the opening kickoff away, and it went downhill from there. For the most part the defense did its job, limiting Staley to 3.2 yards per carry and Detmer to 10-29 for 181 yards and two picks (but three TDs) while allowing just 11 first downs overall.

The offense on the other hand was awful. Drew Bledsoe threw four interceptions, lost the ball another time on one of his six sacks, and the team averaged a measly 2.3 yards per carry. All told the Patriots committed six turnovers, turned the ball over two more times on downs, missed a field goal, and four of their six punts were three-and-outs. While losing at home to Buffalo may have been the icing on the cake, this game may have been biggest reason why Pete Carroll was fired.

I remember that Eagles loss...There was another STs brain fart that I believe had to do with celebrating a tackle but not noticing that the ball was on the ground... They were definitely Not ready to play that day.
 

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