Originally Posted by Lestat
almost every guy you mentioned who isn't in the HOF had 8 or so seasons of stand out play.
which is about the same shelf life of a RB. they'll have stand out seasons, have a couple of solid or ok seasons, a down year or two and then either retire or peter out.
i'm not talking about overall career longevity, i'm talking about prime years where they were an impact player and not simply a name one.
Reggie White was one of the best defensive lineman in the history of the game.
both his success and consistency is rare in the game
Michael Strahan, took him til his 5th year to become a consistent force and put together 8 really good seasons and some other ones that were up and down.
John Abraham, he's never really been a complete player. he came on in his 2nd season and has had inconsistent success, he's had 8 stand out seasons, working on a 9th but the past 4-6 seasons he's been a 2 down player or so.
Chris Doleman, he was invisible until his third season. he had 8-9 really good stand out seasons and some inconsistent ones during the other 6-7 years of his career.
Lawrence Taylor, another rare breed type like White. his success is not usually achieved.
Julius Peppers, started off pretty strong, had a down year in his 2nd season, started progressing and put together 8 stand out seasons. if he continues his current pace there could be a 9th.
Neil Smith, took him until his 3rd year to establish himself as a dominant pass rusher, he put together 7 really stand out season.
Dwight Freeney has been good since he came onto the scene, still took him a bit to be a complete player. he's had a injury shortened season and a bad down year season. how many good seasons? 8.
John Randle, started slow, really came on in his third year and put together 8 consecutive really good seasons and then petered off before a resurgent year and then petered off again and retired.
Joe Greene, again, another guy who's consistency is damn near impossible for many to achieve, that's why he's a HOF player and potentially the best complete DE in NFL history.
Richard Dent, he is another guy who was a beast and a consistent terror who is in the HOF for a reason. rarely is that consistency achieved oftern. had he not played the last 4 years of his career you could argue he never had a bad year.
Jason Taylor, took him into his 4th year to become a complete player. his prime was about 8 years and then he fell off into a solid player for the last 4 years of his career.
Leslie O'Neal, he came on strong, struggled, rebounded in his 3rd year and put together 9 really good stand out seasons.
Derrick Thomas, i hope Von can have the elite type of career he had. 11 seasons and never a bad year, but once again, his consistency is damn near unheard of and not likely to occur often.
Jared Allen, he hasn't had a bad season yet in his career.
he's got a high motor, he's been able to stay both healthy and motivated despite cashing in and playing on bad teams.
but once again, his consistency is rare.