During the interminable offseason, we bloggers/writers/media often have to reach for topics to cover. Sure, some teams have the good fortune of having a player holdout or a star get arrested but for those of us who belong to the Falcons community, Summertime can be brutal.
With Ray Charles on my mind, I thought it would be interesting (perhaps only to me) how many NFL players – active and retired – were born in Georgia.
Hit the jump for the many factoids.
A little research help from the Google machine tells me that Georgia has been the birthplace for 80 active NFL players. That gives the Atlanta Falcons home state the sixth-most active players in the league behind only California, Texas, Florida, Ohio and Louisiana.
Some of the most accomplished Georgia-born NFL players currently active include Champ Bailey, Kevin Mawae and Jeff Saturday.
The Empire State of the South also had 688 players suit up for the NFL at some point. The all-time greats include Mel Blount, John Hannah and Jim Brown.
Of those 688 players, 117 were born in Atlanta. Columbus (42), Savannah (35), Augusta (23) and Albany (21) make up the top five.
The Peach State has sent seven players to the Hall-of-Fame, though none of them played for the Falcons (We can’t really claim Eric Dickerson based on 1993 alone). Former Falcons’ linebacker Jessie Tuggle is the ultimate Georgia product. Born in Spalding County, attended Valdosta State college and
was an undrafted free agent signed by the Falcons. (Thanks to Jeremy)
For all you parents out there with dreams of watching your boy play in the NFL you should make sure you live in Houston, Texas. Texas has had more players in the NFL than any other state and Houston is their top city with 250.