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Best Kansas City Chiefs Player Tournament, Elite Eight: '70s-'80s Era Region

Running back Christian Okoye of the Kansas City Chiefs runs with the ball during a game against the Cleveland Browns at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs won the game, 34-0.
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Farzin VousoughianContributor IIIApril 2, 2012

On Monday, No. 1-seeded quarterback Len Dawson was the first player to punch his ticket to the Final Four, voted by you, the fans!

Dawson out-voted No. 2 LB Bobby Bell to advance in the tournament.

Today, we continue the Elite Eight as we go to the '70s and '80s region to determine the best player from this era.

Voting ends tonight at 11:59 p.m. EST.

 

 

No. 1 RB Christian Okoye vs No. 2 S Deron Cherry

Christian Okoye: Coming out of Enugu, Nigeria, Christian Okoye earned the nickname “The Nigerian Nightmare.” Okoye is not your typical running back. He bulldozed his way through defenders and was as tough a back to take down as has ever carried the pigskin.

Okoye amassed 1,246 carries, 4,897 rushing yards and 40 rushing touchdowns in his six-year career, all with Kansas City. Okoye was the Chiefs' all-time rushing leader when he retired.

Okoye’s best season came in 1989 when he had career highs in a single season for carries with 370, rushing yards with 1,480 and rushing touchdowns with 12. Okoye had only two 1,000-yard seasons and earned a Pro Bowl invitation in 1989 and 1991 for his performances.

He retired early from football because his body was not able to keep up with the intensity of the work.

Okoye passed No. 4-seeded wide receiver Stephone Paige.

 

 

Deron Cherry: He is considered one of the more dangerous safeties to play the game during the '80s.

Having spent all 11 seasons in Kansas City, Cherry pulled down 50 interceptions in 141 games. He returned those picks for 688 yards off and took one back for a touchdown.

His best season came in 1986 when Cherry picked off nine passes, good for second in the league that year, one short of Ronnie Lott of the San Francisco 49ers.

Cherry was voted to six Pro Bowls and has earned five All-Pro recognitions. He was also named part of the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team for his performance in Kansas City.

Cherry passed No. 6-seeded cornerback Albert Lewis.

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