|10-02-2007, 08:52 PM||#1|
Long live the Mane!
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Silt, Colorado
Brandon Marshall usa today link
Great story of Marshall and how he is doing with the loss of Nash and Willams
|10-02-2007, 09:00 PM||#2|
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Shanghai, China
when did I miss that he was also with Nash, that is just crazy. He sure is doing well this year. I hope he can keep it up.
|10-02-2007, 09:18 PM||#3|
Happenin Homer Homie
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: In The Loft / Dog House
NEXT BIG STAR
The look on Sam Adams face is an instant classic...
DIS FKING MOFO IZ GONA KILLZ SUMBUDY!!!!
DAUUMM BOYEE YU SURE IS SUM KINDA KRAAYZZ AZZ!!!
|10-02-2007, 11:16 PM||#4|
Ring of Famer
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Phoenix, AZ
|10-03-2007, 11:06 AM||#5|
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Saratoga, NY
Broncos' Marshall opens up about fallen teammates
By Vicki Michaelis, USA TODAY
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Denver Broncos receiver Brandon Marshall intended to wear the wristbands during every game this season.
His late teammates would be with him on every route. For every catch, for every miss.
The wristbands, bearing the names of Darrent Williams and Damien Nash, instead are in a trophy case in Marshall's house. Marshall realized he needed to keep them there to keep his emotions in check while playing.
"If I look down and I see a Darrent Williams bracelet and a Damien Nash bracelet and I get to thinking — I mean, it could be in the middle of a play, it could be fourth quarter, fourth down, and that's how emotional I am. It could get to me, just knowing that they're still supposed to be here," he says.
If they were here, Williams, a cornerback, and Nash, a running back, surely would be celebrating Marshall's breakout year. Through four games the 6-4 receiver is one of Denver's leaders with team highs in receiving yards (290), touchdown catches (two) and receptions (20).
"He's a stud," Broncos quarterback Jay Cutler says. "You just put one high and he's going to go up and get it. He's going to make a play for you, and the first guy's probably not going to take him down.
"He's going to get some yards after the catch and give you a chance to score."
If Williams and Nash were here, Marshall's breakout season wouldn't be braided with so much real-life perspective.
"I think about them all the time," Marshall, 23, says.
Marshall, in his second year out of the University of Central Florida, was with both players in the moments before they died.
He struggles with feeling he was partly responsible for the tensions that preceded Williams' drive-by shooting death early Jan. 1.
Marshall also carries the memory of trying to comfort Nash's wife when her husband collapsed at home and could not be revived, hours after playing alongside Marshall in a charity basketball game Feb. 24.
The Broncos have posted reminders of Williams and Nash in the lockers at their training headquarters, and they wear decals with the players' numbers on their helmets. After consecutive victories on walk-off field goals to start the season, Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said of Williams and Nash, "Obviously, they are doing some work upstairs."
But for the most part, the Broncos, who have lost two games since that magical start, have privately mourned their teammates. Receiver Javon Walker, in the car when Williams died instantly from a shot to the neck, has recounted that night's events only once, in an interview with HBO's Real Sports.
Marshall talked about it in detail for the first time while being interviewed for this story.
He was the first Bronco to make contact with the group suspected in Williams' slaying, he says. No charges have been filed in connection with the incident.
When Marshall arrived at a downtown Denver nightclub on New Year's Eve to join a party that he, Williams and Walker were co-hosting with some Denver Nuggets, he saw a long line outside and asked the bouncer to let him bypass it. He pointed out his name was on a flier advertising the party.
Someone in line shouted out, "You're not the only one with money," according to Marshall.
"Me, knowing the situation and knowing my environment, I made a joke out of it. I said, 'Well, if you have money, too, then the drinks are on you tonight,' " Marshall says. "So one of his friends started laughing, and we were laughing about it, but there was one guy that just kept that serious face."
Marshall says he convinced the bouncer to let the group in with him.
Members of the group confronted Williams later in the night after being sprayed with champagne, according to the Real Sports report. Marshall says he and others intervened.
"They said what they had to say, and they walked away," Marshall says.
After the club closed, Marshall says he stayed inside for about 20 minutes to let the crowd clear. But when he left, he found everyone still outside. Members of the group Marshall met at the beginning of the night were flashing gang signs, he says. Williams, who was 24, encouraged his teammates and their friends to leave, but Marshall exchanged words with the group.
"This is where I feel like I was wrong," he says. "The whole night I kept my cool, and 75% of the time, 75% out of 100, I was in the right. This 25% I felt like was wrong because I fed back into it. I fueled their fire."
Asked whether he's shouldering a sense of responsibility for the shooting that ensued, Marshall leans in, drops his head and says: "There's things that are messing with me still, but I think I'm a strong enough person to know that it was a tragic event. I'm strong enough that I can work through it within myself."
He's working through some of it between the sidelines.
Ask his coaches and teammates the difference between this season and last, when the fourth-round draft pick had 18 of his 20 catches and 287 of his 309 yards in the final seven games, and they use words such as "growing up" and "maturity."
"We've known he had the ability to do what he's done," assistant head coach Mike Heimerdinger says. "It's just a matter of whether he was going to do it or not.
"Having talent has never been a question with Brandon. He's got the size and the speed and the talent."
Honoring his friends
Now he also has the drive. Williams and Nash might not be on his wrist, but they are on his mind.
"When I catch a ball, I'm catching a ball because I know that's how Darrent caught a pick," Marshall says. "When I catch a ball and run with it, I'm running with it the way Nash ran with the ball — with just the attitude that no one's going to stop me, no one's going to take me down."
Marshall was the last Bronco to see Nash alive. He accepted Nash's invitation to play in a charity basketball game Nash arranged at his suburban St. Louis high school to benefit heart transplant research. Nash's brother Darris had a heart transplant in 2006.
Nash, who was 24, caught good-natured grief from Marshall and others for not playing strong defense in the game. He benched himself after the game got close, Marshall says.
After the game, Marshall joined about 20 of Nash's family and friends, including Nash's wife, Judy White-Nash, and then 7-month-old daughter Phaith, at Nash's house. Nash was in a bedroom.
"I remember someone saying — I don't remember if it was his cousin or his brother — 'Man, Nash passed out.' Everybody was all nonchalant about it, thinking he just was dehydrated or fatigued a little bit," Marshall says.
After a few minutes, people began entering the bedroom to find out what was happening.
"All we could do was just get together and pray and do whatever we knew best to revive him," Marshall says. "All I could do was just hold his wife and tell her everything would be all right. No one thinks a guy in shape like him at the age of 24 would just fall and leave us like that."
An autopsy found Nash's death was due to natural causes of "cardiac origin," although it did not determine the exact cause.
For Marshall, the second such shock in just two months left him numb and speechless.
Darnell Harrison, his mentor since he coached Marshall in football and track at Lake Howell (Fla.) High School, advised him to ease his pain through action, to commit to helping the families of Williams and Nash. Williams had a young son and a daughter.
"I told him now that's just a part of his life," Harrison says. "He just adopted those families throughout his life, if they ever need it."
Marshall recalls asking Williams during special-teams practices last season about the things Williams did for his mother after making the NFL.
He remembers looking around the packed gym at Nash's charity game and being impressed by the love and support that Nash got from his family and community.
"We were in the same position — young guys on the rise, just trying to do something positive," Marshall says.
Now Marshall is left to do it alone. He knows if he wants to make significant contributions to his late teammates' families, he must first boost his money-making and marketing potential with his play on the field.
"In all honesty, I'm a fourth-round guy. My name isn't that big yet," he says. "But it will be."
|10-03-2007, 11:15 AM||#6|
Ring of farmers
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Anaheim Hills, Santa Ana Mountains CA
|10-03-2007, 11:37 AM||#7|
Join Date: Aug 2005