Monday, October 27, 2008

Kerry Collins Biography

Kerry Collins Biography

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Kerry Michael Collins (born December 30, 1972 in Lebanon, Pennsylvania) is an American football quarterback for the Tennessee Titans of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Carolina Panthers with the fifth overall pick of the 1995 NFL Draft (The first ever draft choice in team history). He played college football at Penn State, where he was a Heisman Trophy finalist during his senior season in 1994.

Playing career

Penn State

Kerry Collins played college football at Penn State University, where he earned many awards. As quarterback, he was named All American in 1994 by the Associated Press, United Press International, The Football News, Football Writers Association of America, Walter Camp and The Sporting News.

Collins also captured two of college football’s major postseason prizes — the Maxwell Award, presented to the nation’s outstanding player, and the Davey O'Brien Award, which goes to the nation’s top quarterback.

Collins finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy balloting that year. In addition, he was chosen UPI Back-of-the-Year and garnered Player-of-the-Year honors from ABC-TV/Chevrolet and the Big Ten Conference. Collins made a serious run at the NCAA season passing efficiency record, falling just four points short (172.8), the fourth-highest figure in NCAA annals.

He broke Penn State season records for total offense (2,660), completions (176), passing yardage (2,679), completion percentage (66.7), yards per attempt (10.15) and passing efficiency (172.86). He had 14 consecutive completions at Minnesota, another Penn State record. Collins was the linchpin of an explosive offense that shattered 14 school records and led the nation in scoring (47.8 ppg.) and total offense (520.2 ypg.).

With 5,304 career passing yards, Collins ranks No. 3 in Penn State annals and is one of only three quarterbacks to top 5,000 yards through the air. Through his passion and leadership, the 1994 Nittany Lions completed an undefeated season, the fifth under coach Joe Paterno, capped by a Rose Bowl championship over Oregon. His team was awarded the NCAA Division I-A national football championship by the New York Times. Collins was also a member of Alpha Kappa Lambda fraternity.

Carolina Panthers

Collins was selected as the Carolina Panthers' first round pick (fifth overall) in the 1995 NFL Draft. He was the first player ever chosen by the Panthers in the annual college draft, though other players—some free agents, as well as players from the expansion draft—had previously signed with the team.

In his three seasons with the Panthers, he threw for 7,295 yards, 39 touchdowns and 49 interceptions. His completion percentage was 52.6% and his quarterback rating was 65.6. In his second season, he led the Panthers to the NFC Championship Game

Battles with alcoholism

Before the 1997 season got underway, Collins' private battle with alcoholism started to make public headlines. Collins threw 21 interceptions during the 1997 season and the Panthers finished 7–9, just one season after advancing to the NFC Championship.

Collins was placed on waivers by Carolina during the 1998 season and subsequently signed by the New Orleans Saints. On November 2, 1998 Collins was arrested for drunk driving in Charlotte, North Carolina. He finished the 1998 campaign in New Orleans and signed with the New York Giants as a free agent on February 19, 1999

Offensive Language/Drunken Incident

In a highly publicized incident, on the last night of Carolina Panthers training camp in 1997 Collins used the offensive racial slur "nigger" in reference to Black teammate Muhsin Muhammad while in a drunken state at a bar in Spartanburg, SC. Supposedly, Collins also inadvertently slurred offensive lineman Norberto Garrido, who is of Hispanic descent.

This resulted in Collins being punched in the eye by Garrido. Collins had stated, in an intoxicated state, that he thought the use of the racial epithet would help him and his teammates bond.
When Collins was a member of the New York Giants he revealed that for four of his five years there he remained in therapy to deal with that issue and others.

As a member of the Tennessee Titans he said that "The guys were talking to each other that way, and I was trying to be funny and thought I could do it, too. I was so upset by it. It was bad judgment. I could have been labeled a racist for the rest of my career.

I had to live with the way I used that word with a teammate. Extremely poor judgment. I was naïve to think I could use that word in any context."[1]


Not long after signing with New York, Collins decided to seek treatment for his alcoholism. He entered a rehabilitation clinic in Topeka, Kansas. No sooner did Collins get his personal life back on track than his professional career followed. Collins started the 1999 season as the Giants' second-string quarterback, but soon claimed the starting job.

In the 2000 season Collins led the Giants to Super Bowl XXXV, where they lost to the Baltimore Ravens. During the 2001 season, Collins set a single-season NFL record with 23 fumbles[1] (Collins' record was tied in 2002 by then-Minnesota Vikings quarterback Daunte Culpepper). After five seasons, sixty-eight starts and 16,875 yards in New York, Collins was released by the Giants in 2004. The team had already signed former league MVP Kurt Warner and traded for 2004's #1 draft pick, Eli Manning. After his release, Collins signed a three-year, $16.82 million contract with the Oakland Raiders.

Collins began the 2004 season as the team's backup to Rich Gannon, but took over the starting role when Gannon suffered a neck injury in the third week of the regular season.

Collins was the team's starting quarterback for the 2005 season, subsequent to Gannon's retirement.[2]

The 2005 Raiders season started off well for Collins, but he was benched after a Week 13 loss to the San Diego Chargers. However, he regained his starting job two weeks later against the Cleveland Browns (a 9–7 loss at home). After two seasons and a 7–21 record with the Raiders, Collins was cut on March 10, 2006 in what was at least partially a move designed to free space with the salary cap

Tennessee Titans

On August 28, 2006, Collins agreed in principle to a deal of unknown length and money with the Tennessee Titans. After three games, all losses for the Titans, Collins had completed less than half his passes, and had thrown one touchdown and six interceptions. Vince Young, who played extensively as a substitute in the second game, started the fourth through sixth games while Collins saw no playing time in any of them. On March 5, 2007 he re-signed with the Titans.

After Titans quarterback Vince Young was pulled from the game on September 14, 2008, Collins finished the game and was named the Titans starting quarterback for the rest of 2008 later in the week. On September 21, 2008, Collins became just the 15th player in NFL history to pass for more than 35,000 yards.

Coming into the game against the Houston Texans, Collins needed only 90 yards to eclipse the mark. On his 9th completion of 13 attempts, Collins completed a 17 yard pass to Justin McCareins to give him 107 yards on the day and 35,007 yards for his career.


Won the 1994 Maxwell Award (Nation's top college player)
Won the 1994 Davey O'Brien Award (Nation's top college quarterback)
Selected to the NFL Pro Bowl following the 1996 season


Throughout his career, Collins has been one of the NFL's most charitable players. Immediately upon signing his rookie contract with the Carolina Panthers, he donated $250,000 to the Penn State athletic department to permanently endow the quarterback position.

He has donated over 2 million dollars to charities such as Big Brothers/Big Sisters and the Harlem Boys Choir. In 2001, Collins donated $120,000 to Manhattan's Ladder 5/Engine 24 Family Relief following the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center.

Through the KC for Kids Fund of the Kerry Collins Foundation, Collins has donated more than $500,000 for the renovation of the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, a children's unit within the NYU Medical Center. Previously Collins donated $100,000 to the Institute, to establish the Kerry M. Collins Computer Center and Classroom, with specially modified equipment for infirmed children.

During the 2005 season, Collins pledged $1,000 for every touchdown he threw and every game the Raiders won to the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina relief fund. On March 24, 2006, Collins was honored by The Second Mile Foundation in recognition of his commitment to others


1. George, Thomas (2008-09-25). "Young's mentor is right next to him, if only he'd reach out", Retrieved on 2008-09-25

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1 comment:

sarah said...

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