Since the NFL Network has done a show on the Most Feared Hitters in NFL History, I thought I'd do the same thing for Baltimore football. A Top Ten List would be a tough one to do, but remember we are looking at both the Ravens and Colts, up until 1984, of course. I realize these represent two different generations, but those like me will remember the game of yesteryear, with less rules and more contact permitted, although the speed of the game has amped up in these times. However, there were a bunch of old Baltimore Colts who would be gladly welcomed by Ray Lewis and company on the field today. So let's get on with it and I hope this stirs up a bunch of debate and comments.
1. Ray Lewis, MLB (Ravens): No argument should ensue about this obvious pick. Lewis was number seven on the NFL Network's list of Most Feared Hitters of All time, so no wonder he should be #1 on this list.
2. Ed Reed, S (Ravens): Reed may play the safety position, but those guys usually get a runnning start and can take out the defenselss receivers, which Reed has done repeatedly for the Ravens.
3. Mike Curtis, MLB (Colts): Curtis was the typical throw-back old school MLB. Like the Packers' Ray Nitschke, the Bears' Dick Butkus, and the Steelers' Jack Lambert, Curtis was always in the mix, drippng with blood, sweat and always seemed to have tape come off of his body somewhere. He played with a cast on his broken arm and used it as a club to take out opponents and even a fan once. He even wrote a book called, "Keep Off My Turf!"
4. Bubba Smith, DE (Colts): Long before he started making lawyer commercials, Smith terrorized NFL QB's and slapped around offensive linemen back when head slaps were legal. Unfortunately, a sideline yardage pole ended his career way too early.
5. Bart Scott, LB (Ravens): A lot of Ravens fans might be a bt sore at Scott for leaving us for the big bucks, but who could forget that classic hit on Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger?
6. Jim Parker, OL (Colts): Parker is the only offensive player on this list and he definitely deserves to be here. He was so big for his time, that he regularly "pancaked" those defensive players foolish enough to get in front of his lead blocks.
7. Peter Boulware, LB (Ravens): The Ravens All-Time sack leader was well known throughout the league for his crunching blind side hits on opposing QB's as he rushed around left tackles time and time again.
8. Ted Hendricks, LB (Colts): Known here in Baltimore as the "Mad Stork," Hendricks stood 6'7", unusually tall for a LB even by today's standards. He was a great kick blocker, but when he came up to opponents waving his arms, he made them feeze like a deer in headlights.
9. Tony Siragusa, DT (Ravens): Goose might have been better known as the one who clogged up the middle along with fellow fat boy Sam Adams so Ray Lewis could make all the tackles in their Super Bowl Championship season. However, everyone remembers how he flattened and knocked the Oakland Raiders' QB Rich Gannon out of the AFC Championship Game that season. I know Gannon remembers!
10. Johnny Sample, S (Colts): Sample absolutely deserves to be on this list. Such a feared hitter in his time, he even wrote a book called, "Confessions of a Dirty Ballplayer." He is also the only player in professional football histroy to win a title in the old AFL, NFL (prior to the Super Bowl) and the Super Bowl.
So that's my Top Ten List, who's on yours? I had a bunch of other players to look at and decide on, and probably could have kept going for a list of even 20 guys. However, at that amount, the actual placing of the players is pretty subjective. Some of those guys I also considered were from the Baltimore Colts (Gino Marchetti, John Dutton, Ordell Braase, Artie Donovan, Bill Pellington), as well as from the Ravens (Terrell Suggs, Adalius Thomas, Rod Woodson, Jon Ogden, Haloti Ngata). Lots of possible choices on these two great teams. Let's see what you think. Hope you enjoyed this look back!