Saturday, April 26, 2008

Settling in for the draft

I'm not going to lie. I don't like watching the NFL Draft on television. It's painfully long. I can't take Chris Berman for more than, oh, 15 seconds any more. Even less for Mel Kiper Jr and his hair. But with UConn about to have two players picked over the next two days, with a third possible, I'll be tuning in. At least for longer bits and pieces than usual.

With a little spare time this morning during my son's nap time, I've done a little digging for information about our state and the NFL. Turns out, we've done pretty well in churning out some pretty good pro talent. Relative to our size, at least. Here's a few fascinating facts to tide you over during the next 40 or so hours of ESPN draft coverage.

  • The Connecticut-born player with the most NFL games under his belt is kicker John Carney with 274. Yep. Carney was born in Hartford, even though he attended high school in southern Florida.

  • The true leaders amongst Connecticut-born NFL players is Hartford's Eugene Robinson and Vernon's Bill Romanowski. Robinson, best known for soliciting a prostitute the night before the Super Bowl, has played in 250. Romo, the 'roid raging, loogie hocking cheap-shot artist, played in 243 games. Those are two names to be proud of, eh?

  • Steve Young grew up in Greenwich, but was born in Salt Lake City. He also failed to make first-team all-state in high school.

  • Wide receiver Joe Horn was born in New Haven, but grew up in North Carolina.

  • A total of 15 Connecticut-born players saw action in at least 100 NFL games. How many can you name? A hint: Horn and Carney are included on the list, Young is not. Just about all of them are names you should know. Answer later.

  • Yale is the state school that has sent the most players on to the NFL, with 28. UConn is second wit 24. Southern Connecticut State is third with 11. Trinity (6), New Haven (5), Bridgeport (2), CCSU (1) and Wesleyan (1) round out the pack.

  • UConn has the most active NFL players with three (Orlovsky, Fincher and Brian Kozlowski). Yale has two (Eric Johnson and Nate Lawrie). SCSU has one (Jacques Cesaire).

  • Six state born players saw action in games last fall. Jamaal Branch (Hartford), Carney, Horn, Dwight Freeney (Bloomfield), Niko Koutouvides (Plainville) and Andrew Pinnock (Bloomfield). I can name at least one, Chukki Okobi of Hamden, who grew up here but was born in another state.

  • Here's the 100-games played list: Carney, 274; Tom Condon (Derby), 148; Chris Hetherington (North Branford), 126; Horn, 163; Tebucky Jones (New Britain), 109; Floyd Little (New Haven), 117; Nick Pietrosante (Ansonia), 116; Eugene Robinson (Hartford), 250; Andy Robustelli (Stamford), 175; Romanowski (Vernon), 243; Bob Skoronski (Ansonia), 146; Ken Strong (West Haven), 131; Dave Widell (Hartford), 156; Doug Widell (Hartford), 139; Terry Wooden (Hartford), 120.


Blogger Ian said...

Any ideas how high Branch and Thomas will be drafted.

April 26, 2008 12:25 PM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

I think Branch goes in the second or third round to San Diego.

Thomas goes in the fourth or fifth to either Cleveland or Miami.

April 26, 2008 1:00 PM 

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