Tuesday, January 31, 2012
For Sapp, 49ers' hits on QB recalled Seattle
By Mike Sando
INDIANAPOLIS -- For retired defensive tackle Warren Sapp, the pounding Eli Manning withstood at San Francisco in the NFC title game proved the New York Giants' quarterback had fully arrived.
But the six sacks and 12 quarterback hits Manning took did not register atop Sapp's list of all-time QB beatdowns.
"Nah, I saw Andrew Walter take nine sacks in the first half up in Seattle one night," Sapp said Monday at Super Bowl media day, recalling the Seahawks' 16-0 victory over his Walter-led Oakland Raiders in 2006.
Walter actually absorbed seven first-half sacks and nine overall in that game. Sapp had five tackles, one sack and two quarterback hits of his own in that game, but when he called his mother to discuss his performance, she wasn't able to offer much.
"She said, 'If I wanted to watch somebody get killed, I'd turn on Law & Order," Sapp said. "I knew I had to retire right there. They made my mother turn off the TV? Turn off 'Monday Night Football'? I'm getting out of here."
Sapp played one more season before retiring.
I'll pass along an additional thought from Sapp regarding Manning's performance against the 49ers. He was referring to Eli Manning in the context of being the oft-overshadowed younger brother to Peyton Manning:
"I'm the baby boy, too. When you are the baby, you always take a back seat to your brother. Sterling and Shannon [Sharpe] as an example. I was third in my house. I might be the third-best football player in my house when you get my brothers all together. When you look at that little brother, when you come out of that shell, you watch him just operate. You talk about calm.
"I was watching him in San Francisco and they were pounding him. I mean, lighting him up. Some of them flips to Ahmad Bradshaw, to be able to know he's there and to get it to him and to get out of the stuff he was in, I was like, 'Whoa.' I mean, there was no running game for him to bail out on and turn around and hand it off. There was none of that. It's on you, Eli. It's on you and Victor Cruz. And then they took Victor away from him."