David Diehl

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David Diehl
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David Diehl at the New York Giants Super Bowl champions parade in NYC.
No. 66
Offensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1980-09-15) September 15, 1980 (age 33)
Place of birth: Chicago, Illinois
Height: 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) Weight: 304 lb (138 kg)
Career information
High school: Chicago (IL) Rice
College: Illinois
NFL Draft: 2003 / Round: 5 / Pick: 160
Debuted in 2003 for the New York Giants
Last played in 2013 for the New York Giants
Career history
Roster status: Retired
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 12, 2013
Games played 160
Games started 156
Stats at NFL.com

David Diehl (/ˈdl/; born September 15, 1980) is a former American football offensive tackle who played his entire career with the New York Giants of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the University of Illinois. The Giants picked him in the fifth round of the 2003 NFL Draft.

Early life[edit]

Diehl was born in Chicago, Illinois on September 15, 1980. He is of Croatian descent on his mother's side, and of German descent on his father's side.[1][2][3][4][5] When he was younger Diehl frequently visited, with his family, local Croatian churches and emigrant clubs in Chicago.[5] Strong bonds with Croatian-Americans have been proved when he continued with that habit even after he moved to New Jersey, where local Croatian community often have him as a visitor. He has “neuništiv”, the Croatian word for indestructible, tattooed on his left arm.[6]

High school career[edit]

Diehl attended Brother Rice High School[7] in Chicago, where he starred for the football, wrestling, and track teams. He also attended St. Linus Grammar school in Oak Lawn, Illinois.

College career[edit]

Diehl attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he played for the Illinois Fighting Illini football team. He became a second-team All-Big Ten Conference selection as a senior in 2002. Recipient of the Wright Commitment to Excellence Award, presented to the Illinois player who has dedicated himself to academic excellence despite obstacles faced during his collegiate career. Started every game at left offensive guard, registering 91 knockdowns for an offense that featured its first 1,000-yard rusher (Antoineo Harris) and 1,000-yard receiver (Brandon Lloyd) in the same season since 1984. Helped offense total 5,356 yards. In 2001, saw action at both guard and tackle. Registered 56 knockdowns as he participated in 385 plays for an offense that gained 5,041 yards as the line allowed only 16 quarterback sacks (second in the Big Ten). In 2000, was valuable reserve, seeing action in every game at right guard. Made 15 knockdowns as he participated in 43 plays. In 1999: Played in 6 games on the field goal and extra point protection units. Redshirted as a freshman in 1998.

Professional career[edit]

New York Giants[edit]

Diehl was drafted by the Giants in the fifth round of the 2003 NFL Draft, and was the 160th overall selection. Diehl has played multiple positions on the offensive line.

In his rookie season, Diehl started all 16 games, becoming the first Giants rookie to do so since Mark Bavaro in 1985. He was one of 14 NFL rookies to start all 16 games in 2003 and was the only rookie to start at the same position each game during the 2003 season

In 2005, Diehl played yet another position, starting 15 regular season games at left guard and 1 game at right tackle. That season, Tiki Barber rushed for a franchise-record 1,860 yards, and Eli Manning passed for 3,762 yards, the 5th-highest total in franchise history.

The Giants signed Diehl to a six-year, $31 million contract in May 2008.[8]

At the end of the 2009 season, Diehl was elected to the 2010 Pro Bowl as a Super Bowl Participant replacement.[9]

Diehl was moved from left tackle to right tackle following the release of Rich Seubert and Shaun O'Hara and the signing of David Baas.[10] He had started every game of his NFL career until 2010, when he tore his hamstring and suffered a partially dislocated hip.[11]

On August 21, 2013, the New York Giants announced that Diehl will undergo surgery to repair his injured right thumb.[12] The recovery time was expected to be approximately six weeks.[12] On January 24, 2014, Diehl announced his retirement after 11 seasons. [3]

Personal[edit]

Diehl during the Giants Super Bowl XLII rally at Giants stadium.

His Croat origins are from his maternal grandparents. His grandmother, Lucija Semanic (born Šamanić) was born in the USA, but was originally from the town of Krk in the southwestern part of the island Krk in Croatia,[13] while his grandfather, Ante Bekavac, emigrated to United States from Lovreć in Croatia.[13] Diehl has a tattoo of the Croatian coat of arms on his left arm.[4] Diehl stated that his favorite tattoo is his Croatian coat of arms. He visited Croatia in June and July 2011, in search for his roots.[5]

Diehl played at the University of Illinois, and is a fan of the university's former halftime performer, Chief Illiniwek. During player introductions on TV, he states his school as "University of Chief Illiniwek." He also has an image of Chief Illiniwek tattooed on his arm.[14]

Diehl received the Wellington Mara NFL Man of the Year Award May 22, 2012 at the annual Boys Hope Girls Hope Dinner.

Diehl says reconstructed his contract before the start of the 2013 NFL Season

On September 16, 2012 Diehl sprained his MCL in a week two matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.[15]

On February 11, 2013, Diehl admitted to driving while under the influence of alcohol and crashing his car in Astoria, Queens in June 2012. He will be under court supervision for six months among other penalties.[16]

References[edit]

External links[edit]