Arizona State's all-time NFL team

Eric Allen (21) photo courtesy of the Philadelphia Eagles

NFL teams needing defensive backs may want to pay a visit to Arizona State

Mike Haynes had the size, speed, athleticism and hands to excel as a cornerback in the NFL.

And he did, intercepting 46 passes on his way to nine Pro Bowls. He has a Super Bowl ring and a bust in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

But achievement is what the NFL has come to expect from Arizona State defensive backs.

Eric Allen played 14 seasons in the NFL at cornerback, intercepted 54 passes and went to six Pro Bowls. Mike Richardson started at corner for the 1985 Super Bowl champion Chicago Bears and Craig Newsome started there for the 1996 Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers.

Darren Woodson was in the first wave of NFL cover safeties, helping the Dallas Cowboys win three Super Bowls. He went to five Pro Bowls and became the franchise’s all-time leading tackler with 1,350. David Fulcher went to three Pro Bowls as a strong safety for the Cincinnati Bengals. He intercepted eight passes in 1989, helping the Bengals win their last AFC championship. Free safety John Harris intercepted 10 passes in 1981 for the Seattle Seahawks and 50 in his career.

Phillippi Sparks spent six seasons as a starting NFL cornerback and intercepted 27 passes. Adam Archuleta started at safety on the 2001 NFC champion St. Louis Rams and wound up with 530 career tackles and three defensive touchdowns in seven seasons. Strong safety Pat Tillman made 145 tackles in 2000 in an all-too-short four-year career.

All but Newsome, Sparks and Woodson earned All-America acclaim at Arizona State.

Here’s the Arizona State all-time NFL team:

QB Jake Plummer, 29,353 passing yards, 161 TDs

HB Gerald Riggs, 3 Pro Bowls, 1985 NFC rushing champ

FB John Henry Johnson, Hall of Fame

WR Charley Taylor, Hall of Fame

WR John Jefferson, 4 Pro Bowls, two 13-TD seasons

TE Todd Heap, 2 Pro Bowls, 499 career catches

OT Marvel Smith, Pro Bowl, 9 seasons, 108 starts

OT Levi Jones, 8 seasons, 97 starts

G Randall McDaniel, Hall of Fame

G Kyle Kosier, 10 seasons, 127 starts

C Grey Ruegamer, 9 seasons with starts at C, G, T

DE Jim Jeffcoat, 102 ½ sacks

DE Al Harris, 11 seasons, 20 sacks, 4 INTs

DT Curley Culp, Hall of Fame

DT Dan Saleaumua, Pro Bowl, 12 seasons, 35 ½ sacks

OLB Terrell Suggs, 13th on all-time sack list with 132 1/2

MLB Bob Breunig, 3 Pro Bowls, 1977 NFC champion

OLB Derek Smith, 11 years, 1,095 tackles

CB Mike Haynes, Hall of Fame

CB Eric Allen, 6 Pro Bowls, 54 INTs

S Darren Woodson, 5 Pro Bowls, Dallas all-time tackle leader

S David Fulcher, 3 Pro Bowls, 31 INTs

K Luis Zendejas, 3 seasons, 37 FGs, 189 points

P Danny White, Pro Bowl QB, 610 career punts

KR Travis Williams, 2-time NFL KR champion, 7 return TDs

ST Brian Jennings, 2 Pro Bowls, 13-year deep snapper for 49ers

Comments (1)
No. 1-1
brian wolf
brian wolf

An excellent secondary indeed...

Darren Woodson was a linebacker for this team but Jimmy Johnson wisely saw his potential as an NFL safety... I believe he should be in the HOF for his multitude of responsibilities that allowed the Cowboys to have an excellent defence. Once he retired, the defence, and especially the young safety he groomed, Roy Williams, werent nearly as good.

Eric Allen should be a Hall of Famer as well, being a ballhawk and All Pro for both the Eagles and the Raiders. Despite a great pass rush, I didnt believe the Eagles became a great defence until he developed with them.

Mike Haynes was an exceptional cover corner who was as smooth as silk. No matter who the receiver, he could shut them down.