Eddie George

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This article is about an American football player. For information on the former Governor of the Bank of England, see Edward George, Baron George.
Eddie George
refer to caption
George in 2007.
No. 27
Position: Running back
Personal information
Date of birth: (1973-09-24) September 24, 1973 (age 43)
Place of birth: Philadelphia
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight: 235 lb (107 kg)
Career information
High school: Fork Union (VA) Military Academy
College: Ohio State
NFL Draft: 1996 / Round: 1 / Pick: 14
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Rushing yards: 10,441
Average: 3.6
Touchdowns: 78
Player stats at NFL.com

Edward Nathan George Jr. (born September 24, 1973) is a former professional American football player who was a running back in the National Football League (NFL) for nine seasons. He played college football for Ohio State University and won the Heisman Trophy in 1995. He was drafted in the first round of the 1996 NFL Draft, and played professionally for the Tennessee Titans (both in Tennessee and in Houston when the franchise was known as the Houston Oilers). George was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2011.[1] Post-football, George earned an MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. In 2016, he will appear on Broadway in the play Chicago; his role is hustling lawyer Billy Flynn.[2] On May 19, 2011, it was announced that George would be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.[1]

Early life[edit]

George was born in Philadelphia. He played Pop Warner football for the Abington Raiders. He attended Abington Senior High School until the tenth grade, and then transferred to Fork Union Military Academy. George made the decision to stay at Fork Union Military Academy for a fifth prep school year. Such choices are commonly made by high school football players hoping to improve their recruitment status with colleges, but for George it meant another year of the rigorous military lifestyle. George went on to rush for 1,372 yards in his fifth season at FUMA, attracting the attention of several major colleges.

College career[edit]

George attended Ohio State University, where he majored in landscape architecture and played for the Ohio State Buckeyes football team. As a freshman running back for the Buckeyes, George was an instant contributor. He scored three rushing touchdowns in a win over Syracuse University. However, he suffered a major setback in a game against the University of Illinois. In that game, George lost a fumble at the Illinois' 4-yard line that was returned 96 yards for a touchdown. Later in the game, with Ohio State leading by 2 points in the final quarter, George fumbled again, this time on Illinois' 1-yard line. Illinois recovered the fumble and drove for the game winning touchdown.

Before the Illinois game, George had carried the ball 25 times and scored 5 touchdowns, but for the rest of the season, he had only 12 more rushing attempts and didn't score once. In the following season, George was used as the team's third string running back, behind Raymont Harris. He carried the ball only 42 times, mostly when Ohio State had a large lead late in games. However, as a junior, George became the team's starting running back and went on to rush for 1,442 yards and 12 touchdowns.

As a senior in the 1995 season, George rushed for a school record 1,927 yards and 24 touchdowns, an average of 148.23 yards per game, while also catching 44 passes for 399 yards and another score (George only caught 16 passes in his first three seasons). One of his best performances of the year was in a 45-26 win over the University of Notre Dame, where he rushed for 207 yards, his third 200-yard game of the season. He also rushed for a school-record 314 yards and scored 3 touchdowns in OSU's victory over Illinois. In the 3 years since committing his 2 fumbles in the Illinois game as a freshman, George had over 600 rushing attempts and fumbled only 6 times. Ohio State finished the season with a 10-2 record, and George was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American and won the Heisman Trophy in the closest vote in the history of the award at the time, beating the University of Nebraska's Tommie Frazier by 264 votes. George left Ohio State second in school history in career rushing yards (3,768) and third in rushing touchdowns (44). Overall, he finished with 4,284 all-purpose yards, 45 touchdowns, and a 5.5 yards per carry average.

George was the first-round draft selection (14th overall pick) of the Houston Oilers (now the Tennessee Titans) in 1996 NFL Draft. George won the NFL Rookie of the Year award in 1996, and was the Oilers/Titans' starting tailback through 2003, never missing a start. He made the Pro Bowl four consecutive years (1997–2000), and assisted the Titans to a championship appearance in Super Bowl XXXIV, where they lost to the St. Louis Rams 23-16. George gained 391 combined rushing and receiving yards in the Titans' three playoff games that year and went on to rush for 95 yards, catch two passes for 35 yards, and score two touchdowns in the Super Bowl.

On July 23, 2004, George signed a one-year contract with the Dallas Cowboys for $1.5 million plus incentives that could have earned him more than the $4.25 million he would have made under his contract with the Titans, who released him on July 21, 2004 in part due to salary cap considerations. George only started 8 games for Dallas while rookie Julius Jones was out for two months with a fractured scapula bone. He became the backup running back when Jones returned midway through the season, finishing with 432 yards on 132 carries and 4 touchdowns. He officially retired in 2006.

His career totals include 10,441 rushing yards, 268 receptions, 2,227 receiving yards, and 78 touchdowns (68 rushing and ten receiving).

Professional career[edit]

George is only the second NFL running back to rush for 10,000 yards while never missing a start, joining Jim Brown. Only Walter Payton (170) started more consecutive regular-season games than George's 130.[3]

Though George rushed for 1000 yards in all but one season with Tennessee, numerous sports writers suggested that a heavy workload caused a decline in George's productivity. In five of his eight seasons with the Titans, George carried the ball over 330 times. In 2001, George averaged just 2.98 per carry, the fourth lowest number in league history among running backs with more than 200 rushing attempts in a season.[4] On October 26, 2015, it was announced that George would be making his Broadway debut in Chicago, playing the role of Billy Flynn from January 11, 2016 through February 28, 2016.[5]


Personal life[edit]

On October 1, 2006, George was appointed spokesperson for Tennessee's GetFitTN program by Gov. Phil Bredesen. The initiative is aimed at the prevention of Type 2 diabetes and the promotion of healthier, more active lifestyles. On Saturday, April 28, 2007, George ran the Country Music Half Marathon (ending just outside then LP Field, now Nissan Stadium) in an unofficial time of 2:04:08. He wore race number 27 during the race, just as he wore number 27 during his college and NFL careers. George later stated that completing the race was tougher than playing in the NFL. In 2008, George campaigned for Senator Barack Obama's presidential bid.[6]

George graduated from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, earning an MBA in the Executive MBA program.[7]

Statistics[edit]

Year Team Games Attempts Yards YPA TDs
1996 Houston Oilers 16 335 1,368 4.1 8
1997 Tennessee Oilers 16 357 1,399 3.9 6
1998 Tennessee Oilers 16 348 1,294 3.7 5
1999 Tennessee Titans 16 320 1,304 4.1 9
2000 Tennessee Titans 16 403 1,509 3.7 14
2001 Tennessee Titans 16 315 939 3.0 5
2002 Tennessee Titans 16 343 1,165 3.4 12
2003 Tennessee Titans 16 312 1,031 3.3 5
2004 Dallas Cowboys 14 132 432 3.3 4
Career 142 2865 10441 3.6 68

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Deion Sanders, Lloyd Carr join Eddie George in Hall's Class of '11". Sports.espn.go.com. 2011-05-17. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  2. ^ Mike Freeman. "Mike Freeman's 10-Point Stance: Eddie George's Incredible 2nd Act". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  3. ^ "Career Flashback: Former Titans RB Eddie George". Titansonline.com. 2011-05-16. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  4. ^ "Lowest yards per carry, 1920-2014". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved 1 December 2014. 
  5. ^ Johnson, Natalie. "Former NFL Star Eddie George to make Broadway Debut in 'Chicago'". NBC News. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  6. ^ Nick Timirao, Obama Looks to Score Big, The Wall Street Journal, February 27, 2008.
  7. ^ Ryan Morton (Winter 2009). "NFL Pros Come To Kellogg". northwestern.edu. Retrieved October 7, 2012. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Pennington, Bill (2004), The Heisman, Great American Stories of the Men Who Won, New York: HarperCollins, pp. 305–313, ISBN 0-06-055471-1 .

External links[edit]