The 300: #30 Michael Strahan

We are one tenth of the way through our rundown and we mark it with a man who was not only a stellar player, but who has gone on to a top level media career.

Aug 3, 2014; Canton, OH, USA; New York Giants former defensive lineman Michael Strahan prior to the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame game against the Buffalo Bills at Fawcett Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

 

NFL CAREER

New York Giants (1993-2007)

 

POSITION

Defensive End

 

WHY IS HE IMPORTANT?

There aren’t many sportsmen or sportswomen, anywhere, who have won awards for their skills as a television presenter. There certainly are none, other than Michael Strahan, who have won two Emmys.  This is not, of course, the reason why Strahan makes this list, but it is important to note that, through his post-playing career first on ‘Live! With Kelly and Michael’ and then on ‘Good Morning America’, Strahan has broken the stereotype of NFL players and inarticulate, slow-witted lunkheads.

Speed of thought and speed of action characterised Strahan’s play in the NFL. During fifteen seasons with the Giants he racked up 141.5 sacks, a figure which is still in the top ten career totals a decade after his retirement. In 2003 he accumulated 22.5 sacks, a record which still stands (even if there is some dispute over his last, easy, takedown of Brett Favre). You just don’t manage those numbers in the NFL without being seriously good at your job!

The last of those sacks came in Superbowl XLII, as the Giants defeated the previously unbeaten Patriots in a game which has become famous for David Tyree‘s ‘helmet catch’. In truth, though, that win was as much due to the Giants’ defense stifling their opponents as it was to anything else. It was Strahan’s second Superbowl appearance and he appeared to be determined to make up for the franchise’s poor showing in the previous one (they lost Superbowl XXXV to the Ravens). Having done so, he called time on his career, went into television and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2014.

Richard O’Hagan

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Richard O'Hagan
Writer on such diverse topics as sport, music, theatre, law and politics. Author of 'Eddie the Sheep'. Supporter of underachieving teams, including the Chicago Bears from before that brief, heady, period in the mid-1980s when they were actually any good. All I want for Christmas is a Jim McMahon away shirt.
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    We are one tenth of the way through our rundown and we mark it with a man who was not only a stellar player, but who has gone on to a top level media
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