Yesterday the pro football Hall of Fame opened it’s door to seven new members, amongst them were former Giants defensive end Michael Strahan.
Strahan played every down of his now Hall of Fame career as a member of the New York Giants, a tenure that spanned from 1993-2007. His 141.5 career sacks ranks his first all time in franchise history and fifth in the history of the NFL (sacks didn’t become an official NFL statistic until 1982). He also holds the NFL’s single season record for sacks with 22.5 in the 2001 season. Strahan retired from football after the 2007 season in which he won his only Super Bowl championship.
The numbers are clearly impressive, but to watch Michael Strahan at his best was to watch a player that was an unrelenting pass rusher, a player that commanded the attention of every set of eyes on the opposite side of the ball, and even that was often not enough. He was able to get to the passer at will, even when taking on double teams, which was often the case because he was the focal point of the other team’s pass protection. He was a durable player who performed at a very high level for a long time, recording double digit sacks six times in his career and never playing less than 15 games between 1994 and 2003. Despite the opinion of Warren Sapp, there is absolutely no argument to be made for Strahan to be kept out of Canton. He was as dominant at his position as any other player of his era.
Strahan’s impact was not just on the field. He was, and is, a beloved figure amongst the Giant fan base because of who he was off the field as well as on it. He was a terrific leader in the locker room and has a personality that is as big as his skill set, something which has made his transition from football player to TV personality seamless.