Muhsin Muhammad

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Muhsin Muhammad
No. 87
Position: Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1973-05-05) May 5, 1973 (age 43)
Place of birth: Lansing, Michigan
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight: 217 lb (98 kg)
Career information
High school: Lansing (MI) Waverly Senior
College: Michigan State
NFL draft: 1996 / Round: 2 / Pick: 43
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Receptions: 860
Receiving yards: 11,438
Receiving touchdowns: 62
Player stats at NFL.com

Muhsin Muhammad II (/mˈsɪn/; born Melvin Darnell Campbell Jr. May 5, 1973) is a former American football wide receiver who played for the Carolina Panthers and Chicago Bears of the National Football League (NFL). Muhammad played college football for Michigan State. He was drafted by the Panthers in the second round of the 1996 NFL Draft. Muhammad was a two-time Pro Bowl selection for the Panthers in 1999 and 2004, and also made the 2004 All-Pro Team. He was known for his nickname, "Moose," and for his signature touchdown dance, which was featured in one of the opening cameos of Madden NFL 2006.

Early life[edit]

Muhammad was born in Lansing, Michigan. His birth name was Melvin Campbell, but it was changed after his father converted to Islam when Muhammad was four years old.[1]

He was mainly a soccer player in elementary school, but peer pressure led him to play football.[2] He attended Waverly High School in Lansing, Michigan, where he earned three letters in football and an additional two in basketball and track. Muhammad was also an all-state linebacker and running back at Waverly.[3]

After high school, Muhammad played at Michigan State University. He enjoyed a breakout season in 1995 under coach Nick Saban with 50 catches for 867 yards and 3 touchdowns while playing with quarterback Tony Banks and wide receiver Derrick Mason.

Professional career[edit]

Carolina Panthers (1996–2004)[edit]

The Carolina Panthers selected Muhammad in the 1996 NFL Draft's second round. After two mediocre seasons, Muhammad earned a starting role in 1998 and led the Panthers with 68 receptions, 6 touchdowns, and almost 1000 yards.

Muhammad enjoyed an outstanding season in 1999 under new coach George Seifert and his 96 receptions, 8 touchdowns and 1253 receiving yards led to his first Pro Bowl selection. His 102 receptions during the 2000 season tied for the NFL lead. Muhammad averaged nearly 1000 yards each season from the 1998 to 2000 NFL season.

Muhammad was injured for much of the 2001 NFL season, but he returned to form and eventually played a leading role in the Carolina Panthers' run to Super Bowl XXXVIII during 2003 NFL season. Though the Panthers lost to the AFC Champion New England Patriots 29-32, Muhammad recorded the longest touchdown reception (85 yards) in Super Bowl history.[3]

Muhammad's play during the 2004 season, where he led the NFL with a career-high 1,405 receiving yards and 16 receiving touchdowns, earned him his second Pro Bowl invitation. By the end of the season, Muhammad held all of the Panthers' receiving records, including catches (578), receiving yards (7,751), 100-yard games (26) and the top three single-game yardage totals (192, 189, 179). He also tied Wesley Walls at 44 touchdown receptions.[3]

Muhammad, who was due a $10 million roster bonus, and the Panthers could not agree on a contract after the 2004 season, and the team released him in February 2005. Hours after his release, the Chicago Bears offered the 32-year-old a six-year contract, and Muhammad left Charlotte for Chicago.[4]

Muhammad's first stint with the Panthers was plagued with several negative experiences. He was the target of a racial slur from his quarterback, Kerry Collins, testified at murder hearings for Rae Carruth and Deidra Lane (wife of Fred Lane), and was arrested in 2003 on misdemeanor drug and weapon offenses.[5][6][7]

Chicago Bears (2005–2007)[edit]

Muhammad became one of the Bears' receiving threats during his first year with the team. He was also credited with encouraging a stronger work ethic within the team's receiving corps and advising young wide receivers such as Bernard Berrian, Mark Bradley, and Rashied Davis.

Despite failing to catch several poorly thrown passes from rookie quarterback Kyle Orton, Muhammad held himself responsible and promised reporters he would improve his performance. However, Muhammad was later seen complaining to Orton during a Sunday night game against the Atlanta Falcons. After Muhammad's criticism, coach Lovie Smith benched Orton in favor of a fully recovered Rex Grossman.[8]

Muhammad’s statistics improved with Rex Grossman at quarterback in the 2006 season. He had his first one hundred-yard day with the Bears in their season opener against the Green Bay Packers, and a second against the Minnesota Vikings during week three. However, he saw less action as Grossman began to play inconsistently after the season’s midway point. Muhammad defended Grossman from criticism and often supported him at press conferences.[9] Muhammad finished the regular season as the team’s leading wide receiver for the second consecutive time.[10] His lone post-season touchdown reception took place at Super Bowl XLI during the Bears' 29-17 loss.

Muhammad’s age seemingly affected his endurance. Although he played all sixteen games in 2006, the Bears listed him as probable or questionable before many games.[11] Before the 2006 season, he revealed he had played through the 2005 season with a broken hand.[12]

Muhammad had a down year in 2007, and the Bears released him on February 18, 2008.[13]

After leaving the Bears, Muhammad told Sports Illustrated Chicago is "where wide receivers go to die." The remark caught the attention of Darryl Drake, the team's wide receiver coach. While Drake stated he was unfazed by Muhammad's remark, he argued former Bears wide receivers Bernard Berrian, Justin Gage, and Bobby Wade developed in Chicago and enjoyed successful careers after leaving.[14]

Return to Carolina (2008–2009)[edit]

Just nine days after the Bears released him, Muhammad signed a two-year contact with his former team, the Carolina Panthers.[15] On September 14, while playing against the Bears, he became the 29th player in NFL history to reach 10,000 career receiving yards. He finished the year with 65 receptions for 923 yards and 5 touchdowns.

In 2009, Muhammad caught 53 passes for 581 yards and a touchdown. After 14 seasons in the NFL, he retired.

Professional statistics[edit]

Regular season[edit]

 Postseason Receiving
Year Team GP GS Rec Yards TD
1996 Carolina Panthers 9 5 25 407 1
1997 Carolina Panthers 13 5 27 317 0
1998 Carolina Panthers 16 16 68 941 6
1999 Carolina Panthers± 15 15 96 1,253 8
2000 Carolina Panthers 16 16 102 1,183 6
2001 Carolina Panthers 11 11 50 585 1
2002 Carolina Panthers 14 14 63 823 3
2003 Carolina Panthers 15 15 54 837 3
2004 Carolina Panthers± 16 16 93 1,405 16
2005 Chicago Bears 15 15 64 750 4
2006 Chicago Bears 16 16 60 863 5
2007 Chicago Bears 16 16 40 570 3
2008 Carolina Panthers 16 15 65 923 5
2009 Carolina Panthers 14 13 53 581 1
Career totals 202 188 860 11,438 62
^† League leader
Pro Bowler

Post-season[edit]

 Regular Season Receiving
Year Team GP GS Rec Yards TD
1996 Carolina Panthers 2 0 0 0 0
2003 Carolina Panthers 3 3 15 352 2
2005 Chicago Bears 1 1 3 58 0
2006 Chicago Bears 3 3 7 93 1
2008 Carolina Panthers 1 1 5 55 0
Career totals 10 8 30 558 3

Broadcasting career[edit]

During the 2002 and 2003 off-season, Muhammad became a color commentator for NFL Europe on behalf of Fox television. He also was a post-season correspondent for NFL Network in 2004 and has worked as a color commentator for the Big Ten Network [16]

Muhammad won a Chicago Emmy Award for Outstanding Achievement for Sports Programs for his segment, Hanging with the Moose, which aired on Comcast SportsNet's "SportsNite" in 2005.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Despite his father's conversion to Islam, Muhammad is a Christian.[18][19] He is married to Christa Muhammad. They have four daughters and two sons: (oldest to youngest) Jordan, Chase, Journey, Muhsin III, Maddon and Kennedy. The family adopted Maddon and Journey from Ethiopia in 2007.[20]

Philanthropy[edit]

Muhammad's charity foundation, “The M2 Foundation for Kids”, is dedicated to improving the mental and physical development of children. He also supports the "Back to Nature" program which encourages children to spend more time with nature by taking them on hikes throughout the Great Smoky Mountains and nature preserves in Tennessee[3] and the Muscular Dystrophy Association in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he raised funds and awareness for the group by helping organize Christmas toy drives and a special football camp. Muhammad is also a spokesperson for the Men For Change organization which helps raise money for impoverished women’s shelters.[3]

On February 28, 2007, Muhammad’s high school alma mater gave him a special award for donating $50,000 worth of equipment to school’s fitness center, which was also renamed in his honor.[21]

The Carolina Panthers presented Muhammad with their “Man of the Year” award in 1999 for his charity and volunteer work.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Chicago Suntimes, Moose on the Loose Retrieved on October 13, 2006
  2. ^ NFLrush.com, NFL Rush: Player of the Day Retrieved on January 22, 2007
  3. ^ a b c d e ChicagoBears.com, Roster - 87 Muhsin Muhammad Retrieved on January 19, 2007 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "MooseBio" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  4. ^ ESPN, Muhammad's deal can be worth as much as $30M Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  5. ^ New York Times, Panthers Say Collins Contrite Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  6. ^ CBC Sports, Muhammad defends Carruth Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  7. ^ Chicagoist.com, Dangerous Retrieved on, January 19, 2007
  8. ^ RealFootball365.com, Don't write off Muhammad just yet Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  9. ^ ChicagoBears.com, Grossman displays poise and confidence in win Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  10. ^ Pro Football Reference, 2006 Chicago Bears Statistics Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  11. ^ Chicago Bears.com, Injury Report - Chicago Bears Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  12. ^ USA Today, Muhsin Muhammad Bio from USAToday Retrieved on January 19, 2007
  13. ^ NFL.com,Bears release Muhammad Retrieved on February 18, 2008
  14. ^ "Bears Team Report - Inside Slant". Yahoo! Sports. 2008-08-18. Retrieved 2008-08-18. 
  15. ^ The Buzz - HeraldOnline.com blogs and community journalism - Carr gone, Moose official
  16. ^ Illinois-Northern Illinois Game Notes
  17. ^ Chicago Tribune, Mrs. McNabb moves forward Retrieved on March 2, 2007
  18. ^ Brad Biggs (May 20, 2005). "Muhammad all about giving as well as receiving". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 148. 
  19. ^ Moose87.com, Chicago Bears Wide REceiver Muhsin Muhammad's Bio Retrieved on February 6, 2007
  20. ^ Muhammad named a finalist for prestigious award - Chicago Bears
  21. ^ Waverly Community Schools, Muhsin Muhammad II honored for his generous donation Retrieved on February 28, 2007.

External links[edit]