Reggie White Green Bay Packers & Philadelphia Eagles & Carolina Panthers
"The thing that I know, and everyone else knows, is that no one can ever take my accomplishments away. My goal as a football player was to be the best to ever play my position. I believe I’ve reached my goal.”
Reggie White earned the nickname "The Minister of Defense" as a senior at Tennessee. The moniker surely had to do with something more than the fact that he became an ordained minister at the age of 17. That became instantly apparent when he began his pro football career.
White, who spent two seasons in the ill-fated United States Football League, made a memorable debut in the National Football League with the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 4 of the 1985 season. He collected 2.5 sacks, and deflected a pass that was intercepted and returned for touchdown. Despite the fact he played in only 13 games that season, White tied for the team lead with 13 sacks and was named the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year. The following season, White picked up 18 more sacks to earn his first of an astounding 13 straight Pro Bowl trips.
In 1987, White recorded one of the finest seasons ever posted by a defensive lineman. In the season debut against the Washington Redskins, he sacked quarterback Doug Williams, stripped the ball, and then picked it up and raced 70 yards for the first of his two career touchdowns. In just 12 games during the strike-shortened season White amassed 21 sacks to earn his first of two consecutive league sack titles.
In 1993, after recording 124 sacks in 121 games over eight seasons in Philadelphia, White became the first big name free agent to switch teams. He joined the Green Bay Packers and instantly helped turn the fortunes of the once-proud franchise.
The team steadily improved and, in 1996, returned to glory with White leading the NFL's topped ranked defense to playoff and Super Bowl victories. In Super Bowl XXXI he recorded a record three sacks.
Reggie played two more years in Green Bay. During that period he added 27 more sacks to his repertoire. After a one-year "retirement", White returned for a final season with the Carolina Panthers in 2000.
White retired as the NFL's all-time sack leader with 198. He was named to the NFL's All-Decade Teams of the 1980 and 1990s, the 75th Anniversary Team, and was voted first-team All-Pro 10 times in his 15-year career.