Champ Bailey

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Champ Bailey
Champ Bailey 2010.JPG
Bailey during the 2010 NFL season.
No. --     New Orleans Saints
Personal information
Date of birth: (1978-06-22) June 22, 1978 (age 35)
Place of birth: Folkston, Georgia
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m) Weight: 192 lb (87 kg)
Career information
High school: Folkston (GA) Charlton County
College: Georgia
NFL Draft: 1999 / Round: 1 / Pick: 7
Debuted in 1999 for the Washington Redskins
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards

NFL Records

  • 12 Pro Bowls for a cornerback
  • 4 career Pro Bowl interceptions (4)
  • Youngest player to intercept 3 passes in a single game
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2013
Tackles 925
Quarterback sacks 3.0
Passes defensed 203
Interceptions 52
Forced fumbles 9
Touchdowns 4
Stats at
Stats at

Roland "Champ" Bailey Jr. (born June 22, 1978) is an American football cornerback for the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the University of Georgia and earned All-American honors. Bailey was drafted in the first round (seventh overall) of the 1999 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins, and has also played professionally for the Denver Broncos. He was released by the Broncos following the 2014 Super Bowl, primarily for salary cap reasons, and signed by the New Orleans Saints on April 4, 2014.

Bailey is ranked first in all-time career interceptions within the Broncos franchise. He has been selected to 12 Pro Bowls (the most for any cornerback), and is widely regarded as one of the best pass defenders in NFL history.

Early years[edit]

Bailey was born in Folkston, Georgia.[1]

Notable statistics from his Charlton County Indians High School career: Total rushing yards 3573, 58 rushing touchdowns, with 13 100yd games. He passed for 1211 yards on 74 completions. On defense/special teams he caught 8 interceptions, had 26 KR for 731yds, 22 PR for 318yds. His total offensive yardage was 5855 with 394 points scored. He still holds school records for season rushing yards with 1858, season rushing TD with 28, season scoring with 180, single game rushing with 417yds, and tied the record for single game rushing TDs which has stood since 1953 (He is also tied with the same person from 1953 for 3rd with 5).[2]

College career[edit]

Bailey received an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Georgia, where he played for the Georgia Bulldogs football team from 1996 to 1998. He was regarded as one of college football's greatest multiple threats (offense, defense and special teams) in his three seasons as a Bulldog. In his final year at Georgia, he registered 52 tackles (four for losses), three interceptions, seven passes defensed, 47 catches for 744 yards (15.8 avg.), five touchdowns, 84 yards rushing on 16 carries, 12 kickoff returns for 261 yards and four punt returns for 49 yards. He averaged 103.5 all-purpose yards per game and logged 957 plays (547 defense, 301 offense and 109 special teams) on the way to earning consensus first-team All-America and first-team All-Southeastern Conference honors and claiming the Bronko Nagurski Trophy as the nation's top defensive player. Against the Virginia Cavaliers in the Peach Bowl, he caught 3 passes for 73 yards, including a 14-yard touchdown, rushed 3 times for 9 yards, returned 5 kickoffs for 104 yards, returned a punt 12 yards, and posted 2 tackles and 1 pass defended at cornerback. In 3 years at Georgia, he played 33 games (24 starts) and recorded 147 total tackles, two fumble recoveries, one forced fumble, eight interceptions and 27 passes defended. He was an All-SEC first-team selection as a sophomore, starting every game at left cornerback and one game at wide receiver.[citation needed]

Track and field[edit]

Bailey was also a standout athlete; he ran the 55 meters and 60 meters, recording personal bests of 6.35 seconds and 6.85 seconds, respectively. He also competed in long jump and triple jump.[citation needed]

Bailey set a school indoor long jump record in 1998 of 7.89 meters to finish third at the SEC Indoor Track and Field Championships.[3]

Professional career[edit]

1999 NFL Draft[edit]

Bailey was drafted in the first round (seventh overall) of the 1999 NFL Draft by the Redskins.[4][5] He was the highest drafted player to ever come from his hometown of Folkston, Georgia, an achievement Bailey states was big for his town to increase its interest in football.[citation needed]

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP
5 ft 11¾ in 184 lb 4.28 s 1.48 s 2.49 s 3.79 s 45 in 10 ft 1 in
Values from NFL Combine and Georgia Pro Day

Washington Redskins[edit]

On July 24, 1999, Bailey signed a 5-year, $12 million contract including a $2 million signing bonus.[6] Bailey quickly established a reputation as one of the league's best defensive backs.[7] He was a large presence on the Redskins defense and benefited from time spent with Hall of Fame cornerback teammates Deion Sanders and Darrell Green. After the 2003 season, Bailey's contract with the Redskins expired and he threatened to boycott training camp if the club exercised the franchise tag.[8] In a surprising move, the Redskins gave Bailey permission to seek a trade.[9]

Denver Broncos[edit]

Prior to the 2004 season, Bailey was traded to Denver along with a second-round draft pick (who ended up being Tatum Bell) for Clinton Portis.

On September 12, 2004, during the NFL's opening Sunday Night Football game of the season, Bailey intercepted his first pass as a Denver Bronco.

On January 14, 2006, in a divisional playoff game against the New England Patriots, he broke the record for the longest non-scoring play in NFL history at the time. With the Patriots near the goal line, he intercepted a pass from quarterback Tom Brady in the end zone and returned it 100 yards to the New England one-yard line before he was tackled by New England's Benjamin Watson, who is also a former Georgia Bulldog.

In 2005, Bailey had 10 interceptions (tied for best in the NFL with Asante Samuel), and did not give up a touchdown during the season. Bailey, San Diego Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson and Miami Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor were unanimous choices for the NFL All-Pro team. Also in 2006, Ron Jaworski stated during a MNF pre-season game against the San Francisco 49ers that Bailey only got tested 35 times and only four passes were completed over him, none for touchdowns. Following the seasons conclusion, Bailey finished second in voting for NFL Defensive Player of the Year.

In 2009, Bailey did not allow a touchdown in 80 passes thrown his way that year, played in 98% of the snaps and remained one of the best-tackling cornerbacks in the game.[10]

On September 15, 2009, Bailey was chosen for the Broncos 50th Anniversary team by the Denver community. This team was honored during the halftime-show of the Legacy game versus the Patriots on October 11.[11]

In 2010, Bailey matched up against some of the NFL's best wideouts. He held Dwayne Bowe to no catches on 2 targets. The Arizona Cardinals only completed 3 passes on him for 19 yards in a game where he matched up with Larry Fitzgerald. Bailey was selected to play in his record breaking 10th Pro Bowl. No cornerback in NFL history has been to more.[citation needed]

It was announced on February 22, 2011 by the Broncos vice president of football operations, John Elway that Bailey was re-signed to a 4-year contract [12]

During the 2012 offseason, Bailey was named the 48-best player in the NFL by the league's network, NFL Network.

In 2012, Bailey was selected to the 2013 Pro Bowl. The Pro Bowl selection was his 12th, extending the record he set for trips by a cornerback, and will also tie the record for most Pro Bowls played, tied with Randall McDaniel and Will Shields.[13]

After the Broncos' loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the 2012–13 NFL playoffs, critics blamed Bailey's poor play for two Ravens touchdowns. Ravens receiver Torrey Smith was being covered by Bailey when Smith caught touchdown passes of 59 and 32 yards.[14] The Broncos lost the game 38-35 in double overtime.

During the 2013 offseason, Bailey was named the 53rd-best player in the NFL by the league's network, NFL Network.[citation needed]

During the course of the 2013 season, Bailey was limited to a career-low 5 games with a foot injury; however, Bailey returned in time for the playoffs, and held his own when Chris Harris was ruled out for the remainder of the playoffs after Harris tore his ACL.[15] Bailey played in his first Super Bowl at Super Bowl XLVIII.

On March 6, 2014, the Denver Broncos released Bailey.[16]

New Orleans Saints[edit]

On April 4, 2014, Bailey signed a two-year, $7 million contract with the New Orleans Saints.[17][18]

NFL records[edit]

  • Most Pro Bowl selections for a cornerback (12)
  • Youngest player to intercept 3 passes in a game (21) (at Arizona Cardinals, 10/17/99)

Pro Bowl records[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Champ Bailey is the older brother of linebacker Boss Bailey, who joined Champ on the Broncos for one season in 2008 after playing the first five years of his career on the Detroit Lions. Champ, Boss, oldest brother Ronald, and cousin Kenny all played at Georgia.


  1. ^ "Champ Bailey". NFL Enterprises LLC. Retrieved September 6, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Charlton County Indians School Records". Charlton County High School. Retrieved September 12, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Champ Bailey". Denver Broncos Official Website. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ - NFL Draft History - 1999 NFL Draft Results
  6. ^ "REDSKINS, LIONS SIGN NO 1 DRAFT PICKS", Chicago Tribune, July 25, 1999.
  7. ^ Aikman, Troy (2004). "Shutdown corner: the term starts—and ends—with Deion". The Sporting News. 
  8. ^ Broncos swap Portis for Bailey, CBC Sports, March 5, 2004.
  9. ^ Len Pasquarelli, 'Skins could use 'franchise' tag on CB; Champ Bailey, one of the league's top cornerbacks, was surprisingly given permission by the Redskins to seek a trade, ESPN, February 16, 2004.
  10. ^ Klis, Mike (June 23, 2010). "Broncos will have to deal with Bailey decision". Denver Post. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ Klis, Mike (February 22, 2011). "Broncos re-sign Champ Bailey to four-year contract for $43 million". Denver Post. 
  13. ^ "Mind-blowing stats for the 2013 Pro Bowl". National Football League. January 24, 2013. Retrieved January 24, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Champ Bailey: I'm (almost) 35, so what?". USA Today. January 24, 2013. Retrieved July 4, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Champ Bailey starting in place of Chris Harris". CBS Sports. January 19, 2014. Retrieved January 21, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Broncos release Champ Bailey". ESPN. March 6, 2014. Retrieved March 6, 2014. 
  17. ^
  18. ^ Rosenthal, Gregg (April 4, 2014). "Champ Bailey, New Orleans Saints agree to contract". Retrieved 2014-04-04. 

External links[edit]