Al Blades

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Al Blades
Position:Safety
Personal information
Born:(1977-03-19)March 19, 1977
Died:March 20, 2003(2003-03-20) (aged 26)
Miami, Florida
Height:6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight:207 lb (94 kg)
Career information
College:Miami (FL)
Undrafted:2001
Career history
Career highlights and awards
  • First-team All-Big East (2000)
  • Second-team All-Big East (1999)

Alphonso Blades (c. March 1977 – March 20, 2003) was an American football safety who went to the University of Miami.[1][2][3][4][5] He was selected as a first-team All-Big East player at Miami.[6] He spent two years with the San Francisco 49ers.[7][8] In March 2003, he was the passenger of former Plantation High School teammate Martel Johnson who was driving Blades' 1999 Mazda Millenia when it hit another car which they were racing. Both died in the crash.[9][10]

Early years[edit]

Blades attended Plantation High School. He accepted a football scholarship from the University of Miami. In 1996, he sat out the season with a medical redshirt. In 1997, he suffered a season-ending knee injury during the first fall practice.

As a sophomore in 1998, he started 7 games and was fourth on the team with 82 tackles. He had a 60-yard interception return for a touchdown against Rutgers University.

As a junior in 1999, he was named the starter at free safety, registering 89 tackles (third on the team). He had 13 tackles against Florida State University. He made 20 tackles against Syracuse University.

As a senior in 2000, he contributed to the team's 11-1 record. He posted 87 tackles (second on the team). He was named the National Defensive Player of the Week for his 16 tackle performance against Virginia Tech. He had 17 tackles in the 2000 Orange Bowl. He finished his career with 258 tackles (125 solos), 2 forced fumbles, 3 interceptions, 10 passes defensed and 4 fumble recoveries.[11]

Professional career[edit]

Blades was signed as an undrafted free agent by the San Francisco 49ers after the 2001 NFL Draft on April 25.[12] He was waived on September 4.[13] He was signed to the practice squad on September 5.[14] He was promoted to the active roster on September 12.[15] He was released on September 1, 2002.[16]

Personal life[edit]

Al Blades was the younger brother of former Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Brian Blades and former Detroit Lions safety Bennie Blades, and uncle of H. B. Blades, who played 4 seasons for the Washington Redskins in the NFL as well. His son, Alphonso Blades II (Al Blades Jr.) is currently playing college football at the university of Miami as a defensive back. The younger Blades verbally committed to play with the Hurricanes in 2015.[17] Blades then withdrew his commitment to the Hurricanes, only to later recommit in 2017.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Blades Family Legacy Grows: Al Blades, the Younger Brother of Bennie and Brian, Has Made a Name for Himself at Miami, Orlando Sentinel, Jan 1, 2001.
  2. ^ Uncle drives Blades’ NFL dream, USA Today, March 2007.
  3. ^ Al Blades, A Free Spirit, Miami Herald, 2003.
  4. ^ Blades Finds a Savior in Football, Miami Herald, September 15, 1995.
  5. ^ Kinship With ‘Canes Al Blades Makes His Way in Brothers’ Shadows, Palm Beach Post, December 1998.
  6. ^ Sports Lauderdale.
  7. ^ Former Cane Safety Al Blades Killed in Crash, Lakeland Ledger, 2003.
  8. ^ Blades of a Feather, Miami Herald, February 8, 1996.
  9. ^ Plantation Honors Al Blades, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, 2003.
  10. ^ Former Miami, 49ers safety killed in car accident, ESPN, March 21, 2003.
  11. ^ "Former UM Player Al Blades Killed In Auto Accident". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  12. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  13. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  14. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  15. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  16. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  17. ^ http://caneswatch.blog.palmbeachpost.com/2015/02/22/son-of-al-blades-commits-to-miami-hurricanes/