Rants, comments, thoughts and funny - mostly funny - on all things Michigan and college football.

If you have ideas, tips, links or pictures for the blog, e-mail us at: MichiganZone at gmail dot com.

Thanks for checking out the M Zone. And if you enjoy the site, please pass the link on to a friend or two. We'd sure appreciate it.

Twitter: @MZoneBlog


Best Of Tat and Tresselgate

M Zone Videos

Best Of MZone 2.0

Best Of The Original MZone

Tosu Favorites

MZone Archive

Friday, April 28, 2006

The M All-NFL Team 1980-2005

With this being NFL Draft Week (and with more than four months until the kickoff versus Vandy) I decided to spend far more time than appropriate to put together this list of Michigan All-NFL Teams.

The criteria for selection are the following: 1) The player was drafted or signed from 1980-2005 2) Placement on the team is based ONLY on the player's performance in the NFL. Please note that my recollection of the early 80's may be fuzzy due to the facts that it was long ago, I was a kid, and sadly there was no Internet so I could only follow two or three games every Sunday.

Review these selections and let us know what you think.

QB:Tom Brady

Several others at this position have had solid careers, including Jim Harbaugh, Elvis Grbac, and Brain Griese. Even Todd Collins, Scott Dreisbach, and Drew Henson have had lengthy careers in the NFL and Chad Henne is considered a likely high draft pick in 2007. Other than Miami, is there another school during this period that comes close to this impressive list of pro QBs?
RB: Tyrone Wheatley and Leroy Hoard
Hard to believe that this is the best Michigan could produce, considering the team's success running the ball and its reputation as a ground-game program. Tim Biakabatuka was the highest RB pick, but injuries derailed his career.
WR: Anthony Carter and Amani Toomer
There are other solid choices here (Derrick Alexander and Desmond Howard, though he stayed in the league as a returner.) Toomer has been very steady for the Giants and AC spent much of his prime in the USFL, but still managed to display his special skill with the Vikings.
TE: Jay Riemersma
Like RB, this is another position I thoguht would have bigger NFL stars. Jerame Tuman never did much and Bennie Joppru has spent most of his career on injured reserve.
OL: Jumbo Elliott, Jon Runyan, Jon Jansen, and Steve Hutchinson
By far the deepest of M-in-the-NFL positions (1980-2005). Players left off this list include Greg Skrepanek, Steve Everitt, and Jeff Backus.

DL: Mike Hammerstein, Josh Williams, Glen Steele, James Hall
Please tell me I'm missing people. With the exception of Hammerstein, these guys weren't even dominant in college and they had marginal careers in the NFL. Poor production from this position killed us last year and will doom us this year if it does not improve significantly.
LB: Mel Owens, Ian Gold, Dhani Jones
Larry Foote and Cato June could very well replace Owens and Jones on this list if they contnue to have seasons like they did last year.
DB:Keith Bostic, Corwin Brown, Ty Law, Charles Woodson Bostic and Brown were decent pros and hung around for a while; Law and Woodson of course have been perennial stars, though each appears to be chugging along to the end of his career.


Anonymous said...

How about the best QB's from Bo's first decade?

Anonymous said...

Where I come from, offensive lines have 5 players. Since Everitt was a center, I would make him your 5th.

masked avenger

IC said...

Anon 1:

Rick Leach played in the pros, though mainly as a backup first baseman for the Tigers and Blue Jays.

Other than Harbaugh, I don't think he had any NFL QBs in his second decade either.

IC said...


Thanks for catching my mistake.

Consider Everitt on this list.

Anonymous said...

I love the shout out to good ol' "Cornflakes" Brown

COWolverine said...

It's early, but I would think there should be a spot waiting on the WR list for Edwards once he gets some more time.

Another TE you could consider as pretty solid is Aaron Shea. Wasn't a TE at UM but seems to do well there in the NFL.

surrounded in columbus said...

to add my 2 cents- Tuman, McGee, and Kattus are/were all pretty successful TE's.

if you are interested, collegefootballnews.com has a coule of articles on the "position U" teams (the school(s) known for a certain position, i.e; "Linebacker U"). there are two lists for each position, one that considers just players' college performances and another that looks at pro & college.

not surprisingly, Michigan makes most of the lists, but didn't make the D-Line or LB lists. it's hardly scientific, but like this list, it's a good way to kill time until kick off.

Anonymous said...

You need to mention Jamie Morris for your running back slot. He had some productive years for the Redskins.

IC said...

Agree that Braylon has a good shot if he can get and stay healthy.

Has there been a better M nickname than "Cornflakes?" Possibly Clarence "Housecat" Williams.

Thanks for your two cents. While reserching this I was stunned at how unimpressive our D-Line has been for so long.

Anon 12:39:
I initially had Morris as a potential member of this team, but was surprised to learn that he played only three years in the NFL and rushed for fewer than 1,000 yards in his career. Maybe A-Train deserves a mention for having won Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2001.

Chris of Dangerous Logic said...

How about special teams? Would Don Bracken qualify? Jay Feely? And, of course, Desmond Howard belongs in that category.

IC said...


As you note, no question Desmond is the returner.

Good call on Bracken as the punter. In addition to his steady career with the Packers and Rams, Bracken was ranked by SI a few years ago as the #43 all-time athlete from Wyoming (hailing from Thermopolis.)

Interesting that Feely would probably be the kicker on the M-All-NFL Team. Almost all of his game action came in his senior year, in which he was recognized as only honorable mention All-Big 10.

Anonymous said...

In case anyone is still reading here...

You unintentionally highlighted a continual (and, really, very annoying) problem at UM: D-Line. For most of the last 25 years, it has been staffed by overweight ex-linebackers with stubby arms whose job description (from Bo and the baby Bos) is to just get in the way of the offensive lineman. Forget about pass rushing, etc. :)