We now take a look at the seventh and second to last look at the top position players in Oregon history.
Because "defensive backs" encompass corner backs, rovers as well as both safety positions, there are more players in this list then the others.
Note: Rankings are based off of statistical performance with the Ducks, as well as leadership ability and performance in professional football. Feel free to comment below if you agree or disagree with any of these choice.
For quarterbacks: click here
For running backs: click here
For receivers: click here
For offensive linemen: click here
For defensive linemen: click here
For linebackers: click here
For special teams: click here
T.J. Ward: Ward is perhaps the best hitting safety ever to wear a Ducks’ uniform. He’s even made an impact in the NFL during so far. His career looks very bright.
Keith Lewis: Lewis is seventh all-time in career pass deflections.
Cliff Harris: While Cliff has only played two seasons and his career has been plagued with stupid decisions, he is one of the top defensive players in Oregon history.
Chris Oldham: Oldham is another player known for his skills on special teams than coverage skills.
J.D. Nelson: Nelson will always be remembered for his hard hitting and coverage skills in the secondary.
Smith was a phenomenal corner for the Ducks who never really panned out in the NFL.
Smith is in the top 10 in career interceptions.
From 1998-2001, Smith was part of one of Oregon’s best secondaries.
Most Ducks fans know him as one of the analysts of Comcast SportsNet pregame shows for all Ducks football games.
His career game was the 1986 Civil War in which Newman recorded three interceptions in a 21-point victory over the Beavers.
Thurmond would be higher on this list had his senior season not been cut short by injury.
He was the key figure of Oregon’s best secondary, a secondary that has four players in the NFL.
Thurmond is currently in a battle for the starting corner back job with the Seattle Seahawks.
Look for Thurmond in tomorrow's list of the top special teams players.
Castle is tied for ninth in career interceptions.
As a Ducks’ defensive back, Castle locked down receivers and put offensive coordinators in fits.
He’s one of the most intimidating corners in Ducks’ history.
Lewis is most remembered for his contributions on special teams.
His career in the NFL lasted 11 seasons, and he played a multitude of positions from defensive back to defensive end to half back.
Lewis could do it all.
(Apologies for the poor picture quality.)
Clark was the first Ducks true freshman to start at defensive back.
Clark is seventh all-time in career interceptions.
He was voted all-conference twice.
I’m pretty sure all Ducks fans remember Wheaton for one memorable play.
“Kenny Wheaton’s gonna score! Kenny Wheaton’s gonna score!”
We will all remember, “The Pick.”
Byrd is third all-time in career interceptions as a Duck.
Perhaps Byrd’s best moment was his punt return against Purdue in 2008 that sparked one of Oregon’s great comebacks.
Byrd continues his success with the Ducks into the NFL with the Buffalo Bills.
Leicht is second all-time in career interceptions.
Leicht twice had three-interception games, and he’s second all-time in career interceptions.
He was voted all-conference as a running back, which makes him defensive performances more impressive.
Bauman is arguably the best corner for the Ducks over the past decade.
Bauman did have a tendency of getting beat often, but he also is Oregon’s best catching defensive backs.
When he was having a good game, he could shut down half of the field.
Bauman was a major part of the 2001 Ducks team which finished the season ranked No. 2 in the country.
Molden is a perfect example of a “coverage corner.”
He didn’t garner a ton of attention because of his lack of interceptions.
But you can’t pick off a pass when the ball isn’t thrown your way.
Molden is first in career pass deflections.
Cota is eighth in tackles as a Duck.
He excelled in pass coverage as well as rushing the pass.
During his time as a Duck, quarterbacks made sure to know where on the field Cota was lined up.
Renfro’s name is all over Oregon’s record books at multiple positions.
If you go back to some of the other positions, you'll se Renfro's name at another position.
Renfro is in an elite group of Ducks elected to both the collegiate and professional HOF.
Chung is excelling as a safety with the New England Patriots.
He also excelled as a Duck.
After graduating high school at 16, Chung enrolled early and never looked back.
The four-year starter is the best defensive back in the past 15 years.
This is Shaw’s second appearance on the all-time list.
Shaw holds the record for most interceptions in a season (13) and the career record of (18).
It’s debatable whether he was more impressive as a defensive back or quarterback.
Either way, Shaw is the greatest Ducks defensive back of all time.