Deion Sanders - Biography
Deion Luwynn Sanders
Jersey #: 21, 37
|Born: August 9, 1967||Position: Outfielder||
|NFL Draft : 1989||City: Fort Myers,||MLB Draft : 1988|
|Round: 1 / Pick: 5||Florida||Round: 30 / Pick: 22|
|Years: 1989-2005||College:||Years: 1989–2001|
|Professional Teams:||Professional Teams:|
|Atlanta Falcons (1989-1993)||Height: 6'1"||New York Yankees (1989-1990)|
|San Francisco 49ers (1994)||Weight: 198||Atlanta Braves (1991-1994)|
|Dallas Cowboys (1995-1999)||Cincinnati Reds (1994-1995)|
|Washington Redskins (2000)||San Francisco Giants (1995)|
|Baltimore Ravens (2004-2005)||Cincinnati Reds (1997, 2001)|
Deion Sanders possessed athletic ability that most humans can only dream about. He played professionally in both football and baseball at the same time. Blessed with phenomenal speed, he is considered to be one of the best cornerbacks ever to play football, known for completely shutting down his side of the field. Whether you were a sports fanatic or you tend to throw on a game or two in the background as you play Party Poker, it was impossible to not be astounded by his performance. In baseball, Sanders was known as a prolific base stealer who also made some key offensive contributions to his teams. ?
Sanders was born on August 9, 1967 in Fort Meyers, Florida. After winning state honors in three sports (football, baseball, and basketball) in high school, Sanders took his athleticism to the next level at Florida State University. He decided to drop basketball but then decided to participate in track. He starred in all three sports while at Florida State. He helped lead the track team to a conference championship, batted well, and stole numerous bases for the baseball team. However, it was in football that Sanders truly shone.
Sanders was a two-time consensus All-American, won the Jim Thorpe Award in 1988, had 14 career interceptions, and helped the Seminoles to a Sugar Bowl victory in 1988. In addition to his spectacular defense, Sanders was also extremely good at punt returns. He led the nation in punt return average in 1988 and is the all-time leader at Florida State in punt return yards. Largely regarded as one of the best cornerbacks in the history of college football, Sanders had his #2 jersey retired by the Seminoles in 1995.
Sanders ended up being drafted twice after his senior year at Florida State. The New York Yankees picked him in the MLB Draft, and the Atlanta Falcons selected him in the NFL Draft. Instead of choosing one over the other, Sanders decided to do what he had always done, play both. He played a sporadic, part-time baseball career, playing for four teams over nine seasons. He never played a complete year, his best season probably being with the Cincinnati Reds in 1997. That season Sanders played in 115 games, collected 127 hits, and stole 56 bases. He helped the Braves to the World Series in 1992, where he had a great series, batting over .500. He finished his baseball career in 2001 by playing 32 games with the Cincinnati Reds. Sanders’ career baseball totals include a .263 batting average, 558 hits, 43 triples, and 186 stolen bases.
After becoming Atlanta's first round pick in 1989, Sanders quickly established himself as one of the best defensive players in the NFL. He also developed a reputation as a flashy and cocky player, with his “high stepping” and elaborate touchdown celebrations. He played five seasons with the Falcons, during which he not only recorded 24 interceptions, but also became one of the NFL's elite return men. In 1992 he led the NFL in kickoff return average (26.7), kickoff return yards (1,067), and return touchdowns (2). Sanders left Atlanta to play for the San Francisco 49ers after the 1993 season.
Sanders spent only the 1994 season with the 49ers, but it is considered by some to be the best of his career. He grabbed six interceptions, returned them for 303 yards and three touchdowns, was named the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year, and helped lead the 49ers to win the Super Bowl. However, tempers flared in San Francisco and Sanders left for the Dallas Cowboys and a very large contract. Sanders enjoyed five excellent years with the Cowboys, during which he got offensive playing time as wide receiver, before moving on to the Washington Redskins in 2000. He intercepted four passes that year before suddenly and unexpectedly retiring. However, this was not the end of “Neon Deion” as he decided to return to the NFL in 2004 with the Baltimore Ravens. He grabbed a total of five interceptions with the Ravens before retiring again after the 2005 season. He finished his career an eight-time Pro Bowler with 53 interceptions returned for 1,331 yards and nine touchdowns, 155 kickoff returns for 3,523 yards, 212 punt returns for 2,199 yards, and 60 receptions for 784 yards.
Career Highlights, Awards, and Accolades:
- Won All-State honors in football, baseball, and basketball at North Fort Meyers High School.
- Third Team All-American at Florida State in 1986.
- Consensus All-American at Florida State in 1987 and 1988.
- Jim Thorpe Award winner in 1988.
- Florida State retired his #2 jersey.
- Elected to the Florida Sports Hall of Fame.
- Elected to the Florida State University Athletics Hall of Fame.
- Eight-time NFL Pro Bowler: 1991-94 and 1996-99.
- NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 1994.
- Two-time Super Bowl champion: 1994 (San Francisco) and 1995 (Dallas).
- Career total of 7,838 all-purpose yards and 22 touchdowns.
- NFL all-time leader with 19 defensive and return touchdowns.
- Only player in NFL history to score a touchdown six different ways (regular and post season): kickoff return, punt return, interception return, fumble recovery, receiving, and rushing.
- Hit .331 with Florida Sate in 1986.
- Led the MLB in triples in 1992 with 14.
- Played in the 1992 World Series with the Atlanta Braves.
- Hit .533 during the 1992 World Series.
- Stole a career high 56 bases in 1997.
- Only player in history to play in both the Super Bowl and World Series.
- In 1989 became the first player in history to hit a home run in the MLB and score a touchdown in the NFL in the same week.