Wes was the 3rd pick overall in the 1978 draft by the New Orleans Saints. He was used primarily as a return specialist his rookie year, duties he would rarely be asked to do for the rest of his career. He still managed 35 receptions in limited duty. Wes broke out in his second year, when he had 65 receptions for 1,069 yards and 6 touchdowns. He led the NFL with a career long 85 yard reception. Chandler also made his first All Pro team. He caught 65 balls the following year as well. In 1981, Wes was traded after the 4th game of the season to the San Diego Chargers. He ended up with a career high 69 catches, gaining 1,142 yards and 6 touchdowns. The strike shortened 1982 season was maybe Chandlers best. He snared 49 balls for 1, 032 yards in eight games. He led the NFL with 9 touchdown catches, and 129 receiving yards per game. His 21.1 yards per catch average was the best of his career, and he also made his second All Pro team. Wes caught 58 balls the following year, and was again an All Pro. He followed that up with 52 receptions the next season. 1985 would be Chandler's last as an All Pro, when he caught 67 passes. He set career bests with 1,199 yards and 10 touchdowns as well. Wes caught 56 passes the next year. He was injured in 1987, yet managed to play 12 games and catch 39 passes. Wes then went to the San Francisco 49ers in 1988. He played 4 games for the eventual Super Bowl Champions before retiring. Wes Chandler is know to some as the guy who replaced John Jefferson in Air Coryell during its heights. One of the most famous playoff game in NFL history, The Epic In Miami, saw Chandler catch 6 balls for 106 yards, and score his only punt return touchdown of his career from 56 yards out in the Chargers win. He is a member of the Chargers Hall Of Fame, and was ranked 12th in NFL history in receiving yards and 13th in total receptions in NFL history when he retired. He finished with 559 receptions, 56 touchdowns, and 10,526 all-purpose yards.
Monte was drafted in the 11th round of the 1979 draft by the Washington Redskins. He established himself quickly as a special teams star in his rookie year. He also showed great prowess in pass defense, and soon was part of the dime package, and picked off a pass that year. Monte got to start 10 games the next year and swiped 3 passes for 92 yards. He also had a career high 118 tackles. In 1981, Coleman started in 11 of the 12 games he played. He picked off 3 more balls, and returned one 52 yards for the first touchdown of his career. Monte then went back to being spotted on passing downs mostly. In 1984, he had a career high 10.5 quarterback sacks, and returned 1 interception 49 yards for a score. In 1989, he scored a touchdown on a 24 yard interception. Monte scored the last touchdown of his career in 1993, when he scooped up a fumble and returned it 24 yards. Coleman retired after the 1994 season, his 16th. Of the 215 games he played, he started just 62 of them. His impact was made whenever he took the field, and he was a long time special teams star for the Redskins. He ended up with 999 tackles, 43.5 sacks, 17 interceptions, 14 fumble recoveries, 4 touchdowns, and 3 Super Bowl rings in 4 Super Bowl appearances. When he retired, his 215 games as a Redskin were the most ever until Darrell Green passed him. Monte's stats are very impressive, especially if you consider he never played football until college. What separated him from most, and had him a beloved member of the team, was his leadership both on and off the field. Monte Coleman is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins, and deservedly so.
Roy is one of the greatest Cardinals of All Time. He was drafted by the Saint Louis Cardinals in the 4th round of the 1979 draft. He was used on both sides of the ball early in his career as a Wide Receiver and Free Safety. He was used as a return specialist his first two seasons as well. He returned 41 kickoffs for an NFL leading 1,005 yards in his rookie year. He took 1 back for Cardinals record 106 yards. He also caught a 15 yard pass. The next year, he returned punts as well, and had a career best 16 returns for 168 yards. He also scored on a 57 yard return. Playing exclusively as a Free Safety, he intercepted his first pass. In 1981, he had a career high 3 interceptions for 44 yards, the last interceptions of his career. Green also caught 33 passes for 708 yards and 4 touchdowns. His 21.5 yards per catch average were a career high. Roy also had 3 rushing attempts for 60 yards, while scoring on a 44 yard jaunt. In the strike shortened 1982 season, Roy had 32 catches. Playing now just at Wide Receiver, Roy broke out in 1983. He had a career best 78 receptions for 1,227 yards. He led the NFL with a career best 14 touchdown receptions, while making his first All Pro team. He matched his reception total the following year, while leading the NFL with career bests of 1,555 yards and 97.2 yards per game. He also had 12 touchdowns, while making his last All Pro team. Roy battled injuries over the next 3 years, missing 12 games total. He had 135 receptions and 15 touchdowns over that span. In 1988, the Cardinals moved to Phoenix and Green had 68 receptions for 1,097 yards and 7 touchdowns. He matched that touchdown total on 44 receptions, despite missing 4 games because of injuries. 1990 was Roy's last healthy season in the NFL. He snagged 53 balls and scored the last 4 touchdowns of his career. Roy was then traded to the Cleveland Browns after the 1990 season, but was released. He was then picked up by the Philadelphia Eagles. He caught 37 balls in 22 games the next 2 years, before retiring after the 1992 season. Roy was a special player. He had 559 career receptions, 69 touchdowns, a 16 yard per catch average, 4 interceptions, 20 fumble recoveries, and 11,391 totals yards. I am surprised the Cardinals have allowed Anquan Boldin, or any Cardinal, to wear his number. It should have been retired. His 522 receptions with the Cardinals ranks second in franchise history, and his 8,497 receiving yards and 66 receiving touchdowns rank first in Cardinals history.
Wally was a 4th round draft pick of the Detroit Lions in the 1964 draft. Playing mostly special teams, Wally started in 9 of the 41 games he suited up for Detroit in his first 3 NFL seasons. He was then traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers before the 1968 season. The Steelers cut him in training camp, and the Minnesota Vikings claimed him off waivers. Hilgenberg ended up starting 7 of 14 games that year for the Vikings, and would remain a starter at Right Outside Linebacker until 1976. He picked off the first two passes of his career in 1970, and scored a touchdown off an interception in 1972. In 1973, Wally scored a touchdown off of a fumble recovery, the last touchdown of his career. By 1977, he was a reserve, and started just one game until he retired after the 1979 season at 37 years old. Wally was an integral member of all four on the Vikings Super Bowl teams, and was considered on of the meanest players in the league on the field. His daughter would be named Miss Minnesota Teen USA in 1998. Wally then became ill with ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), and passed away on 9/ 23/ 08. Hilgenberg may not have gotten the headlines that the Purple People Eaters front fours did, but his impact from the strong side OLB slot was vital to the teams extraordinary success. Wally was also known as a practical joker off of the field. Before the Vikings played the Steelers in Super Bowl IX, Howard Cosell was interviewing Hall Of Fame Quarterback Fran Tarkenton at the teams hotel. Wally was on a balcony with teammates a few floors above them, and dumped a bucket of water on Cosell. His passing away has saddened many, but the memories he made will live on.
Charlie was a 13th round draft pick of the Washington Redskins in the 1945 draft. but decided to attend the University of Mississippi. He ended up being the Player of the Year and Back of the Year of the SEC in 1947, when he led Ole Miss to their first SEC title. He was also an All American and the 1947 Player of the Year by the Helms Athletic Foundation. Charlie Conerly is a member of the Ole Miss Athletic Hall of Fame, the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame, the Ole Miss Team of the Century, and the College Football Hall of Fame. The Conerly Trophy is given annually to the top college player in the State of Mississippi. Charlie, now 27 years old, then joined the New York Giants in 1948, and started immediately. He was the 1948 NFL Rookie of the Year, when he tossed 22 touchdown passes and ran for 5 more. He was named to his first All Pro team in 1950, despite starting in just 8 of the 11 games he played. Conerly led the Giants to 3 NFL Championship games between 1956 to 1959. The Giants won the 1956 NFL Championship by blowing out the Chicago Bears 47-7, as Charlie tossed 2 TD's. He would be named to his last All Pro team that year. Charlie was the NFL MVP in the 1959 season. He led the Giants to the Championship against Johnny Unitas and the Baltimore Colts, in what some termed the "Greatest Game Ever". It was the game that put the NFL on the map, and into the homes of most of America. Charlie led the NFL in passer rating, yards gained per pass attempt, yards gained per pass completion, and the lowest interception rate. Charlie continued to start for the Giants until 1960. That year, he started 8 of 12 games. In 1961, the Giants acquired the services of Hall of Fame Quarterback Y.A. Tittle. Charlie, now 40, ended up starting 4 games, as the Giants would go on to lose to the Green Bay Packers in the NFL Championship game. Conerly retired after that. He retired with 1,418 completions on 2,833 attempts for 19,488 yards. He tossed 173 touchdowns, and had 167 interceptions, and rushed for 10 TD's. Charlie punted the ball 130 times for 5,062 yards, a 38.9 yards per punt average, and even kicked 4 extra points. The Giants have had several Hall of Fame Quarterbacks in their organization. Tarkenton, Tittle, Arnie Herber, and Benny Friedman. Charlie Conerly led the Giants to their last Championship win, until they won Super Bowl XXI in 1986. His place as one of the best in franchise history is secure, and his #42 has been retired by the Giants.
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