New York Giants legend Michael Strahan is known today as a television host but was once considered the best defensive player in football.
The New York Giants are one of the iconic franchises in league history and have produced some of the best talents ever to play the game. Michael Strahan played 15 seasons for New York, ending his career with a Super Bowl victory. The undisputed team leader through his final years on the football field captivated audiences in every demographic.
The dynamic play mixed with a unique flair for entertainment, helped transition Strahan into a lucrative career in acting and hosting. The multiple time pro bowl selection immediately joined the FOX NFL Sunday crew as an analyst, exposing his knowledge of the game and humor. Strahan is currently the host of Good Morning America’s third hour alongside Sara Haines and actress Keke Palmer.
The switch to television personality over the past decade has probably made many football critics forget the dominance he displayed on the football field. Strahan has inexplicably left off the NFL 100 All-Time team as part of the league’s year-long 100th season celebration. The list of defensive ends didn’t include Strahan, who, in many opinions, was snubbed regardless of his impressive career numbers.
Strahan was named to the Pro Bowl seven times, and he was named to the All-Pro First team four times. In 2001, He was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year after a season securing 22.5 sacks, which is still a single-season record. He ended his career with 141.5 total sacks which are the most in Giants history and the fifth most in NFL history since sacks became an official stat in 1982.
Strahan probably doesn’t care too much about the official honor of being on the NFL 100 team, but it’s something he deserved far more than stats. He has become an ambassador for the game in the way he’s changed the post-football life perception of players. A brutalizing warrior in the trenches his entire career, Strahan is far from that hosting daytime television.
Empire Writes Back was in attendance this week for a taping of Strahan’s talk show as he addressed the audience with grace and humor throughout breaks. ”the crowd is the fourth co-host of the show, and it’s all about having fun,” said Strahan as he calmly explained the importance of crowd participation at shows.
The participation speech sounds similar to the rally cry huddles he led for the Giants over the years. Strahan may not be in the NFL 100, but he’s forever an All-Time Giant in New York City.