Originally Posted by davidtrout
For Hines it was Courtney Hawkins. Hawk was a Steeler for Ward's first three seasons and while he may not have been an all-pro WR, he was a consumate professional and crucial to Hines' development coming into the NFL. Maybe Hines would have gone on to have the HOF career that we've witnessed anyway, maybe not but it sure didn't hurt. In looking up Hawkins' to make sure I had the years correct, I found out that he is now Head Football Coach and Athletic Director at the high school he attended in Flint MI. Good for Hawk.
hawkins never really was a fan favorite cause he only put up average numbers at best but i remember the coaches always liking him. the fans just seemed too eager to push him out the door so players like plex, edwards, and hines could get more reps. i would say troy and plex really never got the message.
im willing to bet players such as moss and TO would be complete trainwrecks whose careers had derailed much earlier than their current HOF status had it not been for the aged veteran tutelage of rice and carter.
there are dozens of instances around the NFL. take the packers who always seem to have damn good receivers. from sharpe to freeman to driver, to the current group led by jennings. the only one who never really got with the program was javon walker and look where he is now. wasted talent.
hell, the eagles even went out and grabbed freeman for nothing more than to serva as a mentor to freddie mitchell (whos mediocre talent could unfortunately never match his drive).
on the flipside is teams like jacksonville, ravens, and vikings who really cant do shit to develop high draft pick talents. jax was screwed since mccardell left. the ravens havent had anyone since ismael. the vikings had to trade moss because he became practically useless.
carolinas steve smith has always seemed like a headcase waiting to happen. he probably owes his entire career to mushin muhammed.
its no suprise teams like the raiders and 49ers have struggled with phenoms such as heyward bey and crabbtree.
the only ones who seem immune is the ones named johnson. calvin, anrdae, and chad, seemed to do ok so far, but its plenty obvious chad coulda possibly been even better if he had his head screwed on straight.
the other 2 are freaks of nature and as close to a cant miss as we have seen in the past 20 years.
but the entire NFL is wrong and our very own keyboard stroke artists know it all.