Warren Sapp


Warren Sapp

Infobox NFLretired


width=200
caption=Warren Sapp during his tenure with the Raiders.
position=Defensive Tackle
number=99
birthdate=birth date and age|1972|12|19
Orlando, Florida
debutyear=1995
finalyear=2007
draftyear=1995
draftround=1
draftpick=12
college=University of Miami
teams=
* Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1995-2003)
* Oakland Raiders (2004-2007)
stat1label=Tackles
stat1value=569
stat2label=Sacks
stat2value=96.5
stat3label=Interceptions
stat3value=4
nfl=SAP635685
highlights=
* 8x Pro Bowl selection (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005)
* 6x All-Pro selection (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002)
* Super Bowl champion (XXXVII)
* NFL 1990s All-Decade Team
* 1999 NFL Defensive Player of the Year
* College awards and honors

Warren Carlos Sapp (born December 19, 1972 in Orlando, Florida) is a retired American football player who played defensive tackle in the National Football League. He played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Oakland Raiders during his 13 year professional career, and college football for the University of Miami Hurricanes. He was then drafted by the Buccaneers in the 1995 NFL Draft as the 12th overall pick. He spent nine seasons with the team where he earned seven trips to the Pro Bowl and a Super Bowl ring in 2002. He moved to the Raiders in 2004.

His 96.5 career sacks are the second-highest career total sacks for a defensive tackle and the 28th highest overall for a defensive lineman. His 77 sacks with the Buccaneers is second in the team's history.During Sapp's career, he has been the source of some controversy because of his hard-hitting style of play and his occasional verbal outbursts, both on the field and off. Some of these resulted in NFL fines, and he was once ejected from a game for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Sapp is currently a contestant on "Season 7" of Dancing With The Stars, and is paired with Kym Johnson. [ [http://pophangover.com/?p=417 Pophangover TV: "Dancing With The Stars Season 7 Cast"] ]

Early years

Sapp was raised in Plymouth, Florida, a small, a rural community on the Lake County/Orange County, Florida line. During the late 1980s he got the biggest honor, recognition as an outstanding football player at Apopka High School in Apopka, Florida as a linebacker, tight end and punter.cite web | title=nflplayers.com |work=Warren Sapp #99 | url=http://www.nflplayers.com/players/player.aspx?id=22532 | accessdate=May 1 | accessyear=2007] While playing football for Apopka High School, Sapp delivered a hit on a player from Dr. Phillips High school named Johnny Damon, who now plays baseball for the New York Yankees. This was the first concussion Johnny Damon ever received. In 2007 he was named to the Florida High School Association All-Century Team which selected the Top 33 players in the 100-year history of high school football in the state of Florida.

In addition to excelling in football, Sapp was also an All-State baseball player. Sapp played both third base and shortstop for Apopka High, and compiled a batting average of .376 with 11 home runs during his senior season. Sapp was drafted in the 39th round of the Major League Baseball draft by the Atlanta Braves, but choose to pursue his career in football and attend the University of Miami. Sapp still has the record for longest home run at Mark Light Field estimated at 511 feet.

College career

Many top national colleges sought him out as a football player; Sapp chose to play for the University of Miami. Converted to defensive lineman while there, Sapp would win the Bronko Nagurski Trophy (best defensive player), the Chuck Bednarik Award (defensive player), and the Lombardi Award (best lineman or linebacker) all in 1994. He was also named to many All-American teams.

Awards and honors

* Second-team All-American (1993)
* 2x First-team All-Big East (1993-1994)
* Consensus First-team All-American (1994)
* Lombardi Award (1994)
* Outland Trophy finalist (1994)
* Big East Defensive Player of the Year (1994)
* Defensive Player of the Year by Football Writers Association,

NFL career

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

After playing college football at the University of Miami, where he was a defensive standout, Sapp was drafted into the NFL by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the first round of the 1995 draft (12th pick overall). Sapp ran the fastest defensive end forty time, recording a 4.69 time. Upon joining Tampa Bay, Sapp was almost immediately given the starting job at the position of right defensive tackle and finished his rookie season with 27 tackles and one interception. Sapp continued to be a prolific, intimidating tackler for the Buccaneers, tallying 51 tackles and nine sacks in 1996 and 58 tackles and 10.5 sacks in 1997. In 1997, Sapp was named to his first Pro Bowl. It was the first of seven straight selections.Sapp was named 1999 NFL Defensive Player of the year.

2002 Super Bowl

In 2002, Sapp helped lead a resurgent Tampa Bay team to victory in Super Bowl XXXVII over the Oakland Raiders. Sapp had five tackles and two sacks during the 2002-2003 postseason.

Oakland Raiders

In 2004, it was reported that Sapp was interested in accepting a contract offer from the Cincinnati Bengals for four years worth US $16 million. However, on March 20, he announced that he had agreed to terms on a seven-year, $36.6 million contract with the Raiders.Sapp started all 16 games in his first season with the Raiders, splitting time at defensive end as well as defensive tackle. Sapp recorded 42 tackles (33 solo), 2.5 sacks (Sapp's lowest career sack total) and recovered two fumbles.2005 started out as a great year for Sapp, as he was moved back to his familiar DT position. He started the first ten games of the season recording 29 tackles (25 of them solo), and finished second on the team to Derrick Burgess with five sacks. Sapp was sidelined for the last six games of '05 with a shoulder injury

Sapp returned to his All-Pro form in 2006, as he was selected to his 8th Pro Bowl. Sapp and the Raider defense were one of very few bright spots for the 2006 Raiders. Sapp had 10 sacks to go along with 32 tackles and one forced fumble. Before the 2007 season, he lost 49 pounds. He finished the 2007 season with 51 tackles, 2 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles.

Retirement

On January 3, 2008, Sapp told Raiders owner Al Davis over the phone that he would retire. The next day, January 4, 2008, Sapp confirmed it on his website ( [http://www.qbkilla.com www.qbkilla.com] ) in just two words: "I'M DONE!" [ [http://www.qbkilla.com http://www.qbkilla.com] ] The retirement became official on March 4, 2008. [ [http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3277165&campaign=rss&source=ESPNHeadlines ESPN - Sapp files paperwork, officially puts end to 13-year career - NFL ] ]

He is currently a member of NFL Network. He debuted talking about Brett Favre being traded to the Jets.

On August 19, 2008, Sapp was hired as a studio analyst for "Inside the NFL" on Showtime.

Controversies

Mike Sherman confrontation

On November 24, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, Sapp drew criticism for blocking the Green Bay Packers' Chad Clifton during an interception return by the Buccaneers. Clifton was jogging down field, away from the main action, and was blindsided by Sapp. [http://espn.go.com/nfl/columns/pasquarelli_len/1465999.html ESPN.com "Sherman angered by Sapp hit, celebration"] ] The hit sent Clifton to the hospital. He was hospitalized for almost a week and could not walk unaided for five more weeks. In 2005, the NFL Competition Committee agreed on new guidelines for "unnecessary roughness", making hits such as that suffered by Clifton illegal.

Packers' coach Mike Sherman approached Sapp and said to him "You're a chicken shit." [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/news/2002/11/25/sapp_sherman/ CNNSI.com "Sapp, Sherman sound off on third-quarter hit"] ] In response, Sapp screamed at Sherman: "If you think you're so tough, why don't you put on a jersey?"repeat ref text] Sapp later called Sherman: "a lying, shit-eating hound. … If I was 25 years old and didn't have a kid and a conscience, I would have given him an ass-kicking right there at the 30-yard line."repeat ref text] Sherman later said of Sapp: "The joviality that existed after [the hit] when a guy's lying on the ground, with numbness in his legs and fingers, I just thought that wasn't appropriate for any NFL player." [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/news/2002/11/25/sapp_sherman/ CNNSI.com "Sapp, Sherman sound off on third-quarter hit"] ]

The skipping incidents

During pre-game warm-ups of a December 23, 2002 Monday Night Football game at Raymond James Stadium, Sapp skipped through the Pittsburgh Steelers. Steelers running back Jerome Bettis shoved Sapp, and this was followed by a heated argument between the two teams. Sapp was not fined for the incident, but it added to his controversial image. Sapp felt that he was made an example by the NFL by being fined for that first skipping incident. "That's all this is about," said Sapp. "In my nine years in this league, no one's been fined for verbally abusing officials. It's unprecedented."cite web | title=espn.go.com | work=NFL Threatens to Suspend Sapp | url=http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=1638149 | accessdate=May 1 | accessyear=2007] The Buccaneers had been earlier ridiculed by Steelers' Lee Flowers as being "paper champions." Notwithstanding, Sapp and the Buccaneers went on to win Super Bowl XXXVII five weeks later.

In 2003, during an October 6 Monday Night Football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Sapp was scolded for skipping through and disrupting the Colts players, who were spread out on the field, stretching during pre-game warmups. There was much anticipation and national interest going into the game, which was the return of former head coach Tony Dungy to Tampa. The Colts wound up erasing a 21-point deficit in the final four minutes, and defeated the Buccaneers 38-35 in overtime, initiating a downslide for the defending champions.

A week later, on October 12, 2003, prior to the game against the Washington Redskins, Sapp was running onto the field when he bumped into an NFL referee. The incident drew a fine of $50,000. Sapp's response to the fine : "It's a slave system. Make no mistake about it. Slave master say you can't do it, don't do it. They'll make an example out of you."cite web | title=usatoday.com | work=Sapp's Act Ceases to Be Amusing | url=http://www.usatoday.com/sports/columnist/saraceno/2003-10-19-saraceno_x.htm | accessdate=May 1 | accessyear=2007]

Ejection for unsportsmanlike conduct

On December 23, 2007, Sapp was involved in an altercation with NFL referees near the end of the second quarter of the Raiders' game at Jacksonville [ [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/12/27/SPH6U4SFE.DTL Sapp still gesturing, yelling, says he didn't touch official ] ] .

The incident began when linesman Jerry Bergman mistakenly assumed that the Raiders wished to decline a Jacksonville 10-yard penalty. Sapp, the defensive captain, began speaking with referee Jerome Boger, indicating that the Raiders instead wished to accept the penalty. The conversation became heated, with Sapp gesturing and swearing. This resulted in an unsportsmanlike conduct call by Boger against Sapp. Sapp and his defensive teammates continued interacting with the officials after the penalty was called, resulting in a second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against Sapp and an another unsportsmanlike conduct penalty assessed against teammate Derrick Burgess. Finally, the coaches and officiating staff entered the field and began physically separating and removing the arguing players. Boger claimed that during this time Sapp "bumped" him; Sapp denies making physical contact. Regardless, at this point Boger levied a third unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against Sapp and ejected him from the game. Sapp did not play in the second half and was eventually fined $75,000 by the NFL; Burgess received a $25,000 fine [ [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/sfgate/detail?blogid=11&entry_id=22997 SFGate: Raiders Silver and Black Blog : Fine day: Sapp fined 75k, Burgess dinged for 25k ] ] .

Disagreement with Urban Meyer

On September 8, 2008, Sapp made comments about Florida head coach Urban Meyer, when Meyer decided to kick a field goal, during the Florida-Miami game on September 6, 2008, where Florida won 26-3. It was Florida’s first win since 1985 in the on-again, off-again series.

"(He's) a classless dirtbag." – Former Miami defensive tackle Warren Sapp, speaking about Meyer's decision to go for the late field goal. Sapp made the comment during a conference call to promote Showtime's production of "Inside The NFL."

Personal

* Sapp's agent was fellow University of Miami alumnus Drew Rosenhaus, widely considered one of the most aggressive agents currently representing NFL players.
* Sapp's first TV appearance as a Raider was on "The Simpsons" post-Super Bowl XXXIX episode, "Homer and Ned's Hail Mary Pass". In the episode, Homer teaches Sapp to perform victory celebrations after making a play, one being when Sapp tackles another player, he takes out an easel and paints a picture of the tackled player, with Sapp saying, "Art come from pain. Your pain!"
* Sapp was a college football teammate of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson at the University of Miami.
* Sapp claimed to be the victim of frequent attempted poisonings when eating in restaurants. [ [http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2673763 ESPN.com "Sapp insists food was tampered with on road trips"] ]
* Sapp is currently a contestant on Season 7 of "Dancing With The Stars", and is paired with Kym Johnson. [ [http://pophangover.com/tv/?p=124 Pophangover TV: "Dancing With The Stars Season 7 Cast"] ]

References

External links

* [http://www.qbkilla.com Warren Sapp Official Web Site] .
*espn nfl|id=3140|name=Warren Sapp.
* [http://nndb.com/people/994/000159517/ Warren Sapp at the Notable Names Database] .


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