||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2010)|
|No. 32, 30|
|Date of birth:||December 19, 1974|
|Place of birth:||Charlotte, North Carolina|
|NFL draft:||1997 / Round: 1 / Pick: 5|
Career NFL statistics
|Stats at NFL.com|
One such moment occurred in the 1995 rivalry game against Texas A&M when Westbrook landed a devastating hit on Aggies running back Leeland McElroy. It caused color analyst Dick Vermeil to yell "Holy mackerel! Whoo!" Westbrook picked up an unsportsmanlike conduct call for taunting because he strutted next to a stunned McElroy and looked down at McElroy as he walked by. The broadcast team calling the game did not like the call. When Vermeil learned the referee called the play taunting, Vermeil responded by saying "just shoot the official." Ultimately, the play was not a factor in the game's outcome or even that drive. The penalty did not result in a first down since the Aggies were inside the 15-yard line. Half the distance to the goal line was not enough yardage for a first down. The Aggies were forced to bring out their field goal unit.
Westbrook is also known for a brutal hit against Notre Dame in 1996. In the play, Irish QB Ron Powlus pitched the ball out to TB Randy Kinder on the option. Unfortunately for Kinder, Westbrook read the play perfectly and had a full head of steam when the ball got to the tailback Kinder. The ensuing hit caused legendary college football announcer Keith Jackson to instantly say "Uh oh! Hello! Bryant Westbrook!" then fall silent for 10 seconds. Then he said, "The important thing right now is to make sure Randy Kinder can find a place to lay down... 'cause he really took a hit."
In yet another memorable instance of his powerful hits, in the 1995 Sugar Bowl, Westbrook "laid the lumber" to FB Brian Edmonds of Virginia Tech, knocking him unconscious. The hit caused ABC announcer Mark Jones to say, "Somebody answer the phone, because there's a bell ringing, and it's Bryant Westbrook." Then later after some replays and analysis of the play, he further commented about Edmonds, “When he comes to, his clothes will be out of style.”
Westbrook was drafted in the first round (fifth overall) of the 1997 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions, where he played from 1997 to 2001. He returned his first career interception for a touchdown in 1997 and led the Lions as a rookie with 20 passes defended. After the season, Westbrook was named to the 1997 USA Today All-Rookie team. He suffered a ruptured left Achilles tendon against the Minnesota Vikings on November 30, 2000, and was placed on injured reserve on December 4, 2000. He earned Chuck Hughes Most Improved Player award, as voted by teammates. Despite the premature ending of 2000 season, he registered 52 tackles (43 solo), career-high six interceptions and led team with a career single-season high of 21 passes defensed. Westbrook later played for the Dallas Cowboys in 2002 and was cut due to poor play in the opening season loss to the Houston Texans.
|Year||Team||Games Combined||Tackles||Tackles||Assisted Tackles||Sacks||Forced Fumbles||Fumbles Recoveries||Fumble Return Yards||Interceptions||Interception Return Yards||Yards per Interception||Longest Interception Return||Touchdowns||Passes Defended|
Post NFL Career
In January 2011, Westbrook was the new Defensive Back coach at Shadow Mountain High School in Phoenix, Arizona. As of 2012, Westbrook is currently the defensive back coach at Cactus High School in Glendale. He is currently an assistant football coach at perennial Arizona powerhouse Saguaro High School.