Amani Toomer

Amani Toomer

Infobox NFLactive
currentteam=New York Giants
currentposition=Wide receiver

birthdate=birth date and age|1974|9|8
birthplace=Berkeley, California
debutteam=New York Giants
* New York Giants All-time leader (Receptions)
* Super Bowl champion (XLII)
* New York Giants (1996-Present)
statlabel2=Receiving Yards
statlabel3=Receiving TDs

Amani Toomer (pronEng|ah-MAHN-ee) (born September 8, 1974 in Berkeley, California) is an American football wide receiver for the New York Giants of the National Football League. He is the franchise's all-time leader in career receptions. As of 2008, he is the last remaining Giant to be on their active roster that was a part of their
Super Bowl XXXV season in 2000.

Junior high school

Toomer was a student at Aptos Middle School in San Francisco, California from Fall 1985 to Spring 1988. His father, Donald "Don" Toomer, was the vice principal of the school. Amani Toomer was the goalie on the soccer team (Fall 1987/Spring 1988) for which Aptos Middle School won the San Francisco City Championship title. Toomer participated in the school-wide decathlon, which, despite expectations, he did not win.

High school career

Toomer was an All-American at De La Salle High School in Concord, California. Toomer transferred to De La Salle after completing his freshman year at Albany High School (Albany, California). Several publications, including "USA Today", "Parade", and "The Sporting News" ranked him as one of the top high school wide receivers in the nation.

College career

Toomer attended the University of Michigan where he finished his college career second only to Anthony Carter in school history in receptions (143) and receiving yardage (2,657); Toomer now ranks eighth and third in Michigan annals in those respective categories. As a junior in 1994, he became only the third player in school history, after Jack Clancy and Desmond Howard, to post 1,000 receiving yards in a season, finishing with 54 receptions for 1,096 yards and six touchdowns; he was named to the All-Big Ten Conference First Team. His senior year in 1995, Toomer caught 44 passes for 758 yards and seven scores and was voted to the All-Big Ten Second Team.

Professional career

Toomer was selected in the second round (34th overall) of the 1996 NFL Draft by the Giants. His rookie season, he was primarily the punt and kick returner for the team, and set a record in his first game with an 87-yard punt return for a touchdown, the longest in team history, against the Buffalo Bills. He returned a second punt for a touchdown that season against the Philadelphia Eagles, before injuring his anterior cruciate ligament and spending the rest of the season on injured reserve. The next season, he scored another punt return touchdown, as well as his first receiving TD, a 56-yard reception from Danny Kanell against the Arizona Cardinals.

He finally became a starting wide receiver for the 1999 NFL season, and ended up setting the team record for receptions in a season (79). He and Ike Hilliard combined to become the first Giants duo to post over 2,100 receiving yards. His six touchdowns led the team, and his 1,183 yards were the second highest in team history behind Homer Jones. The following season, he came one short of tying his own record for receptions, and increased his touchdown total to 7. His 72 catches in the 2001 NFL season made him the first Giants wideout with three consecutive 70-reception seasons. He broke several Giants records in 2002, when he caught 82 passes for 1,343 yards and 8 touchdowns; the 8 TDs set a career-high, while the passes and receiving yards were new team records. His 204 yards against the Indianapolis Colts were the highest total for any wide receiver for a 60-minute game (2 players had higher receiving totals, but both of those games went to overtime). In 2003, Toomer surpassed Frank Gifford as the team's all-time leading receiving yardage leader, and finished the season with 6,366 yards. His 418 catches were also second all-time to teammate Tiki Barber. The 2004 NFL season marked the first time he did not score a touchdown since his rookie year, although he did finish the season with 51 catches for 747 yards, the 6th consecutive season he topped 50 catches & 700 yards. He entered the 2005 season in sole possession of the Giants' yardage record.

After a subpar 2004 campaign, Toomer rebounded to have a solid 2005 season. With new starting quarterback Eli Manning throwing for almost 3,800 passing yards, Toomer notched 60 receptions for almost 800 yards. The highlights of his season included a last second touchdown reception against the Denver Broncos, a late game-tying touchdown at Seattle, and a terrific fourth and goal catch for a touchdown against the Rams. Toomer expected to go into 2006 as the Giants number two receiver, but quickly showed signs of brilliance. In a week two matchup in Philadelphia, Toomer helped to spark a 17 point comeback by hauling in a career high 12 receptions and two touchdowns. Physically exhausted by game's end, he had to be carried off the field by trainers. The media honored him for his work ethic and team dedication. Toomer's season came to an end after eight games when he suffered a partially torn ACL against the Houston Texans. He had a decent season in 2007 (59 Receptions, 760 Yards 3 TD's) and helped to groom draft pick Steve Smith who is compared to Toomer's style of play.

During the 2007 season, he passed Barber's team record for catches, and he passed Kyle Rote for the team touchdown record, currently 51. On January 13, 2008 in the NFL division playoff game he caught a 52 yard touchdown pass, his longest since a 77 yard touchdown on November 30, 2003. This touchdown catch broke the club record for most postseason receptions.

Toomer had 4 catches, 2 of them for touchdowns, in the New York Giants 21-17 upset over the Dallas Cowboys in the divisional round of the 2007 playoffs. His first TD, gave the Giants a 7-0 lead after he caught an 11 yard pass, eluded three tacklers and ran 50 yards for the score.

In the Super Bowl victory against the previously undefeated Patriots, Toomer led the Giants with 6 receptions and 84 yards.

Prior to the start of Giants mini-camp in May 2008, Toomer and the Giants were invited by President Bush to the White House to honor their victory in Super Bowl XLII.cite web|url=|title=President Bush Welcomes Super Bowl XLII Champion New York Giants to White House|author=Office of the Press Secretary|publisher=The White House|accessdate=2008-04-30|date=April 30, 2008]

ee also

*Lists of Michigan Wolverines football receiving leaders


External links

*pro-football-reference|id=ToomAm00|name=Amani Toomer

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