Herschel Walker and 25 Retired Athletes We Think Can Still Play Pro Sports

Brandon GalvinFeatured ColumnistJanuary 25, 2011

Herschel Walker and 25 Retired Athletes We Think Can Still Play Pro Sports

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    Former NFL star running back, MMA fighter and soon to be 49-year-old Herschel Walker believes that he can still help an NFL team right now.

    Have you seen Walker lately?

    I’m agreeing 100 percent with him!

    Walker is still in prime physical shape. He has the speed and strength to play in the NFL, right now, regardless of age.

    Of course, once an athlete makes a claim like this, everyone starts to speculate not only whether or not he can, but which other retired players could come back to play pro sports?

25. Martina Navratilova

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    Arguably the greatest tennis player to ever live, Martina Navratilova might make Caroline Wozniacki shake in her shoes if the two matched up.

    Navratilova was so dominant during her time that her records will probably never be broken. Still, it’d be nice to see her add on to them!

24. Roger Clemens

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    If it wasn’t for the steroid scandal, I think Clemens would still be toying with a few MLB teams like the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros on a potential comeback.

    The Rocket would still be a capable fourth a fifth starter on most MLB teams.

    Or maybe that was due to steroids; what do you think?

23. Wayne Gretzky

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    Gretzy was so smooth and dominant on the ice, one would think his game was timeless.

    It would probably reign true, actually.

    Like Michael Jordan, as long as Gretzky is alive, he will forever have the option of returning to the ice any time he feels like it in my eyes.

22. Jose Canseco

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    Have you seen this man? Do you really think he can’t swing the bat still?

    Conseco definitely still has his eye and power and could serve as a fine designated hitter.

    At least we know he’d probably be doing it clean!

21. Ken Shamrock

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    Maybe he won’t win a UFC Championship anymore.

    Maybe he didn’t have a last hoorah during his previous go-around in the UFC.

    But Ken Shamrock was such a bad, bad man that I think Shamrock could still show these young guns a thing or two in the octagon.

20. Paul O’Neill

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    I’m sure Yankee fans would still love to see O’Neill in the outfield or dugout going nuts.

    Hey, it helps team morale, no?

    The Yankees probably could have used him when they were being dominated by the Texas Rangers throughout the 2010 ALCS.

19. Reggie Miller

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    Even though I’m a Knicks fan and hated Reggie Miller on the court, I can’t deny the fact that he is one of the all-time greatest players and shooters in basketball history.

    I’m sure Miller could still jump on the court and rain three-pointers down like it’s nobody’s business.

18. Ronnie Lott

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    Lott is one of the all-time greatest safeties in NFL history. He is also one of, if not the, hardest-hitting defenders of all-time.

    I don’t think somebody like DeSean Jackson would be going over the middle if Lott was still playing safety or linebacker, which he probably very well could. Put him in the middle as a linebacker and watch him still bully people around the field and rough them up.

    Oh, what a great sight it would be.

17. Jeff Feagles

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    Did you see the New York Giants’ collapse to Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 15 of the 2010 regular season when punter Matt Dodge kicked to the electrifying DeSean Jackson?

    Do you remember DeSean Jackson taking it to the house for the game-winning touchdown, which led to the Giants’ downfall?

    That’s why Jeff Feagles should unretire.

16. Jerry Rice

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    You, Jerry and I all know…Rice is always open.

    I’d bet it all that Rice would still be able to run a great route and catch anything thrown his way.

    Maybe Rice doesn’t have the speed now, but he has the finesse and experience to school some of these cocky, young cornerbacks.

15. Trish Stratus

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    Stratus may just be the greatest women’s wrestler in WWE history.

    She is a multi-time WWE Women’s Champion and perfected WWE’s craft in the ring and on the microphone.

    Stratus is still in prime physical condition and would excel in a return to the squared circle.

14. Dikembe Mutombo

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    Think the Heat could use a defensive force like Dikembe down in the post?

    Yeah, so do I.

    I’m sure LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh would enjoy his presence, too.

13. Jerome Bettis

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    Have you seen Jerome lately?

    He’s still big and he’s currently plowing through mascots.

    Put this man on the goal line and he’s going to punch it in for another touchdown.

    Could we also ask for The Bus to hop on the Steelers roster to give him another Super Bowl ring?

12. Anika Sorenstam

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    Sorenstam is one of the most successful golfers of all time.

    I don’t know about yours, but my grandparents are still playing golf in their 80s.

    I think Anika could probably still give it a go, don’t you?

11. Robert Horry

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    All Robert Horry ever did was hit clutch jumpers.

    Why this man is retired right now is beyond me.

    Horry doesn’t need to do anything but stay in one spot on the offensive side of the ball, wait for the clock to wind down and catch and shoot.

    Bam, victory.

    That’s what “Big Shot Bob” does, folks.

10. Shannon Sharpe

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    With the amount of smack Shannon talks on CBS before, during and after games, you’d think he was still playing.

    Really, I’d put my money on him coming back to the field and vaulting towards the top of the tight end list once again.

    Throw the greatest tight end ever on the field when in the red zone and watch the scoreboard light up.

9. Rickey Henderson

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    Henderson is probably still faster than most leadoff hitters in the game today.

    Henderson is also the greatest at stealing bases.

    Think he can help a team on the basepaths?

    So do I.

    I’m sure Rickey does, too.

8. John Smoltz

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    One of the all-time great pitchers, Smoltz could still stand on the mound and pitch a fine finesse game. Smoltz has incredible ball control and would serve a team well as a fourth or fifth starter, especially in the playoffs when he can use his veteran craftiness.

    Smoltz is a fine broadcaster as well, but that could wait for now.

7. Zinedine Zidane

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    The retired French footballer remains in great shape, so he wouldn't have any problem returning to the pitch if the price was right.

    Forever remembered as the master of the headbutt, Zidane would waste no time getting back to his polarizing style of play.

6. Karl Malone

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    Have you seen Malone’s Shape Ups commercial?

    The Mailman always delivers. Even on Sundays.

    Karl, put on your Shape Ups and come back to us!

5. Barry Bonds

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    Don't let that smile fool you.

    The surly superstar endured a great deal of questions during his storied Major League Baseball career, questions that eventually forced him to retire.

    Had he stayed in the game, his incredible numbers likely would have continued for a few more seasons.

    Even without having anything left in his legs, Bonds probably still could pick up a bat and belt the ball a mile.

4. Michael Jordan

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    Maybe it’s the mystique of being the all-time greatest basketball player.

    Or maybe it’s because the Charlotte Bobcats are still awful.

    Still, how many would want to doubt this man if he decided to come back and play?

    I’d rather watch Jordan on the court playing as an old man than some of the overhyped "stars" of the league now.

    He may not have the dynamic hops, but he’s definitely got the jumper to hang around.

3. Tony Hawk

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    Tony Hawk retired from competition but still regularly skates. He schools us all with his commentary each year during the X-Games.

    Tony Hawk is the best of all time and would still be up there with the best in action sports competition if he was to come back.

2. Kurt Warner

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    Kurt Warner seems perfectly happy to be retired.

    If he decided to suit up again for the Arizona Cardinals, he would instantly be considered the most reliable quarterback on the roster.

    Even after a year off.

    Following his brutal season with the New York Giants in 2004, Warner returned to his brilliant ways and seemed to find the fountain of youth.

    Is it possible he walked away too soon?

    We would love to find out for sure.

1. Herschel Walker

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    The man that started the whole discussion.

    Look at him.

    He's going to be 49 years old in March and he's in absolutely incredible physical shape.

    I wouldn't want to take him on in the ring nor on the football field.

    You don't think an NFL team would want somebody with his power, speed and determination? I don't care how old he is as long as he can play; and judging by this picture, I'm not going to be the one to doubt him!