The Biggest Bros of the NFL: NFC Edition
Earlier today, we presented the Biggest Bros in the NFL: AFC Edition. Up next is the NFC. Did we leave a big Bro out for your favorite team? Sound Off with your additions and subtractions in the comments.
Dallas Cowboys: WR Miles Austin
I’m an Eagles fan so I don’t like putting anybody here, but it’s hard not to be a fan of what Miles Austin has done with both his career and his life. For one thing, nobody on this side of the guys at Football Outsiders (who had him ranked as the top prospect in football) saw him jumping onto the scene to become one of the most dangerous receivers in the NFL last season. More importantly, however, he further proved the “Lamar Odom Postulate,” which states that anybody can become a bigger celebrity than he deserves to be by simply dating a Kardashian sister. Now that he’s getting drunk off of Kim’s lady lumps, he can’t go anywhere without the constant presence of the media. Much respect to Miles for going from zero to hero in one turn of the calendar.
New York Giants: FB Madison Hedgecock
Fullbacks usually tend to be some of the coolest, albeit out-of-control, players in the NFL and Hedgecock is no different. Described by his teammates as playing with unparalleled “reckless abandon,” Hedgecock flattens out defenders on a consistent basis, and might be the main component in the Giants’ daunting ground game. Off the field, he’s incredibly humble, and measures his own performance solely by the team's. In his free time, he enjoys farming and he’s a notorious NASCAR junkie who was spotted at an event in Richmond this May. Hedgecock is simply a class act off the field, yet one of the scariest dudes in the league once he puts his pads on.
Philadelphia Eagles: WR Hank Baskett
This one’s pretty simple. He isn’t very fast, he isn’t very good, and he pretty much lost the Super Bowl for the Colts last season. Here’s a question though: Does any of that matter when you’re boning Kendra Wilkinson on the reg? It says a lot about Baskett that he’s less accomplished than almost every wide receiver in the league, yet almost of all them would trade lives with him in a heartbeat. People who watch E! are probably more familiar with his work than NFL fans are, but again, none of that matters. He’s gotta be a Bro if he’s taking down the girl that 99% of the country wish they could have. Here’s a little trivia too: The Eagles cut Baskett from their roster in order to make room for Michael Vick.
Washington Redskins: TE Chris Cooley
Chris Cooley is Jared Allen’s biggest competition for the title of “Biggest Bro in the NFL.” His blog, The Cooley Zone is one of the funniest reads you’ll ever see, and puts to shame the loads of NFL wannabees who think their Twitter accounts are funny. The videos he posts there are genius, including the fake “NFL Fantasy Files” he filmed with fellow Bro Colt Brennan, where he impersonates fellow NFC East Tight End Jason Witten. He’s also been known to bang out a Skins cheerleader every once in a while. Keep up the good work, Cooley; maybe it’ll make you forget about the sobering fact that you’re on the Redskins.
Chicago Bears: TE Greg Olsen aka “G-Reg”
This is a pretty easy call for anybody who has ever heard “7th Floor Crew,” a rap song produced by the University of Miami football team earlier in the decade. Despite the daunting task of being the only white dude in the rap collaboration, Olsen not only holds his own, but rather blows his peers off the track by issuing classic lines like “On my balls, on my dick. Then I bust a nut quick. On her face, on her chest. Stick my dick between her breasts.” G-Reg, as he calls himself in the song, occasionally accompanies his keen rhyming skills with some nice blond flow, essentially cementing his position atop the Bears Bro Depth Chart.
Detroit Lions: QB Matt Stafford
This picture speaks a thousand words about his Bro-cred, but in case that isn’t enough for you, Stafford cemented his spot on this list with his performance against Cleveland last season. Despite separating his shoulder on the previous play, Stafford told the training staff to “get the f*ck off” of him, and demanded to be put back into the game, before throwing the game-winning touchdown pass as time expired, capping a 422-yard five-touchdown performance. Fortunately, Stafford was wearing a microphone during the game, and the resulting MUST-WATCH YouTube has become legendary. Stafford couples his unquestioned cajones with some nice Southern flow, and a smokeshow college sweetheart that he drags around with him. He should improve by leaps and bounds this year, and is one of the NFL’s surefire young stars.
Green Bay Packers: LB A.J. Hawk
In the 2006 Fiesta Bowl, A.J. Hawk took down Brady Quinn twice en route to the co-MVP award. Later that night, he probably took down Brady Quinn’s sister Laura (his future wife) a couple times to celebrate. There needs to be a term for the feat Hawk accomplished: Causing physical harm to a pretty boy like Quinn, and then subsequently banging his sister in the same night. Hawk also plays like a monster on the field, and is one of the better young linebackers that football has to offer.
Minnesota Vikings: DE Jared Allen
Jared Allen puts me at a loss for words sometimes. A Bro of his magnitude comes around once in a generation, and it’s best to just sit back and admire him while you can. While he’s not off hunting his own food (and putting the resulting videos on YouTube), America’s favorite mulleted man can be found terrorizing opposing backfields as the league’s premier pass rusher. He’s also an undeniable patriot, who cites the time he spent overseas on a USO tour as “one of the best experiences” of his life. Allen is a pleasure to watch both on and off the gridiron, and has his spot pretty much cemented as the biggest Bro in the NFL.
The NFC South and NFC West are on the next page…
Atlanta Falcons: TE Tony Gonzalez
Tony G is one of those guys who' so good at everything he does, that it almost annoys you. He played significant minutes on a Cal basketball team that went to the Sweet 16 when he was a junior. Then, he went on to become (arguably) the best tight end who has ever played football. In the process of all that, he managed to marry the smoking-hot October Gonzalez, and start a picture-perfect family. Oh yeah, he also performed a successful Heimlich Maneuver to a random restaurant patron in 2008, probably saving the man’s life. If you put a gun to my head and told me to guess one NFL player who was secretly Superman, I’d say Gonzalez’s name without hesitation. ESPN’s Bill Simmons often alludes to athletes who fall into “The Tyson Zone,” where you could hear any story about them and — regardless of how ridiculous it is — you would probably believe it. That honor is usually reserved for idiots like Ron Artest and Dennis Rodman, but I think Tony G may fall in there on the other end of the spectrum.
Carolina Panthers: LB Jon Beason aka “Big Beast”
Another fairly obvious call for anybody who has ever heard “7th Floor Crew,” the aforementioned rap song recorded by a bunch of University of Miami football players — Beason included — a while back. On the track, “Big Beast” claims that when he “skeet skeets” on a girl, he likes to “bust a nut and aim for her mouth piece.” Yes folks, that was verbatum. On top of being a skilled lyricist, Beason is a two-time NFL All-Pro, and he’s one of the most feared defensive players in the league. That’s enough for me.
New Orleans Saints: QB Drew Brees
Reggie Bush was a tempting choice after the “Reggae Bush” commercial for the ESPYs, but sadly it wasn’t enough to make up for the fact that he single-handedly brought down his own college football program. Drew Brees is a model of leadership, who put the hopes of an entire city on his back, and brought them a Super Bowl trophy. He usually exudes a quiet confidence, but his pregame pump-up ritual is so good it gets me ready to lay someone out from my La-Z-Boy. He was forced out of San Diego to make way for Phillip Rivers, and after handling the situation with class, he made the Chargers regret letting him go with his play on the field.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: TE Kellen Winslow, Jr.
Kellen Winslow, Jr. crawled out from the shadow of his Hall of Fame daddy and into the public eye when he famously declared that he was a “f*cking soldier” after a 2003 game between his Miami Hurricanes and the Tennessee Volunteers. This came at the end of a rant regarding why he doesn’t give a f*ck that he injured an opponent with a perfectly legal seal block on a Devin Hester sweep. Good for him: Injuries are a part of the game, and apologizing for a block that fell within the rules of the game isn’t part of his job. He’s showed promise in the League, but his production has been inconsistent. Hopefully he delivers a dominant year in 2010, and gives Bucs fans good reason to Support Their Troops!
Arizona Cardinals: QB Matt Leinart
Leinart’s been a major bust on the field thus far, but a lot of that can be attributed to the fact that he still hasn’t stopped living the dream and partying with sorority chicks. It’s not cool to suck at your job, but if you do, then this is probably the most Bro excuse you can have for doing so. Leinart also showed balls when he seamlessly filled the shoes of Heisman winner Carson Palmer at USC, and went on to win his own Heisman Trophy in 2005. He lives the L.A. lifestyle, making occasional TV cameos as a pseudo-celebrity and has probably done a better job than anybody in the NFL of making a name for himself despite little-to-no on field success. He’s gonna have to fill large shoes again in 2010 (this time of recently retired Kurt Warner), but if he does it half as well as he did in college, things should be fine in Arizona.
St. Louis Rams: DE Chris Long
Long is a workhorse who took after his father Howie, and is on pace to become a monster in the NFL. He was also the first player in University of Virginia history to have his jersey retired while he was still playing. He’s got pretty impressive flow, and his younger brother is about to be a sophmore on the UVA lax team. His Bro-credentials don’t blow you away, but you can tell he’s a solid dude that you’d love to chay with any day of the week.
San Francisco 49ers: TE Vernon Davis
Nicknamed “Cyborg” in college due to his absurd physical stature, Davis came into the league as one of the most hyped tight ends ever. He appeared to be a bust for a while, but regained his Bro-status with a record-tying 13 TDs by a tight end last season. Davis has made cameo music video appearances for songs like “Get Lo” by Ron Artest and Mike Jones, and last year he traveled to Vancouver as honorary captain of the U.S. Olympic Curling team.
Seattle Seahawks: FB Owen Schmitt
This guy is an animal. He definitely wins the Gus Frerotte award for dumbest self-inflicted injury, after he beat himself to a pulp with his helmet before a game. That moment is a nice microcosm for the way Schmitt plays: ruthless and physical. He’s a mauler in the pile, and he seems to get-off on contact. I’m usually not a particularly big fan of mohawks, but Owen wears it quite well, especially when it's complimented by red streaks going down his face.