Sunday, December 4, 2011
Giants add Bavaro, Banks & others to ring
By Ian Begley
The Giants inducted linebackers Carl Banks and Brad Van Pelt, tight end Mark Bavaro, punter Dave Jennings and running back Alex Webster into the team's Ring of Honor on Sunday.
"It's special," Bavaro said after a halftime induction ceremony. "There's a lot more players that should be up there as well.... I'm glad I'm up there and I'm looking forward to a lot of my other teammates joining me up there."
The five former players joined the original 30-member Ring of Honor class that included Wellington Mara, Bob Tisch, Frank Gifford, Mel Hein, Bill Parcells and Harry Carson.
"It's been a long time, good thing I got got here while I'm still alive," joked Webster, who played for the Giants from 1955-1964 and coached them from 1969-1973.
He added: "The Mara family took very good care of me. My whole Giants career was wonderful."
Bavaro, a two-time Super Bowl winner and the only Giants tight end with over 1,000 receiving yards in a season, said that New York will always be a Giants town. No matter what the Jets do.
"I don't know what the Jets are thinking over there but it's always been a Giants town, it will always be a Giants town," Bavaro said.
Here is extensive information on each player, provided by the team.
Webster played his entire 10-year career (1955-64) for the Giants. He played in 109 games and
47 years after his retirement, he is fourth on the Giants’ career lists with 4,638 rushing yards and 1,196 carries. He also caught 240 passes for 2,679 yards and scored 56 touchdowns (39 rushing, 17 receiving). Webster was the second-leading rusher and scorer and the third-leading receiver for the 1956 NFL champion Giants. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1958 and 1961, when he ran for a career-high 928 yards. Webster was the Giants’ head coach from 1969-73.
Brad Van Pelt
Van Pelt played for the Giants from 1973-83, when the team had only one winning record, but he was one of the team’s very best players. Van Pelt joined Carson, Brian Kelley and later Lawrence Taylor to form the famed group of linebackers known as the “Crunch Bunch.” He was selected to play in the Pro Bowl every season from 1976-80. Van Pelt played in 143 games for the Giants in four home stadiums - Yankee Stadium, Yale Bowl, Shea Stadium and Giants Stadium – and for five head coaches - Bill Arnsparger, John McVay, Ray Perkins and Bill Parcells. He had 16 interceptions for the Giants. Van Pelt died on Feb. 17, 2009.
Banks was the third overall selection of the 1984 NFL Draft and played for the Giants through the 1992 season. He was one of the premier run-stoppers of his era, a standout on the teams that won Super Bowls XXI and XXV, a Pro Bowler in 1987 and a member of the NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team. Banks played in 126 regular season games and had 36.0 sacks, three interceptions and approximately 500 tackles. Banks is still closely affiliated with the Giants; since 2007, he has been an analyst on the Giants’ radio broadcasts.
Bavaro is one of the finest all-around tight ends in Giants history. An outstanding blocker, he is also 10th on the franchise’s career list with 266 receptions and 15th with 3,722 yards. Bavaro was a starter on the Giants’ 1986 and 1990 Super Bowl championship teams and a Pro Bowler in 1986 and ‘87. In the Giants’ first Super Bowl season, Bavaro led the team with 66 catches – twice as many as any teammate – for 1,001 yards to become the only tight end in Giants history with 1,000 receiving yards in a season.
Jennings is the most prolific punter in Giants history. A member of the team from 1974-84, Jennings holds the franchise records for punts (931) and yards (38,792). He was selected to play in the Pro Bowl in 1978, ‘79, ‘80 and ‘82. He punted a career-high 104 times in 1979, twice punted for more than 4,000 yards in a season and had a career-best 44.8-yard average in 1980.