Remembering A NFL Superstar: Sean Taylor

Austin DrakeSenior Analyst IOctober 13, 2008

The anniversary of Sean Taylor's untimely death is just around the corner (Nov. 27) and it seems that people have forgotten already about the great NFL safety.


Sean Taylor was born on April 1, 1983 in Miami, Florida. He spent most of his young life with his grandmother, Aulga Clarke and later moved to his fathers house at age 10.

Taylor played high school football at Miami Killiam High School, then transfered to Gulliver Prepatory School where could play offense and defense. He played running back, defense back, and linebacker on his way to carrying his school to a Class 2A State Championship.

Taylor was considered the No. 1 Dade County prospect and was rated the nation's No. 1 skill athlete. Rumor has it, that he once hit an opponent so hard, that the boy's helmet came off and face mask and screws fell apart.

Sean was selected to the Florida High School Assosciation All-Century team, the team consists of the best 33 players in Florida High School football history.


In 2001, he was one of only four true freshman to be a part of the University of Miami national championship team. He made himself a home in the nickel and dime defenses for the Hurricanes.

In 2002, Taylor led all defensive backs in tackles, interceptions and passes broken up. In the Fiesta Bowl that season versus Ohio State, Taylor had 11 tackles and two interceptions. He was selected to the All-Big East second team that season as well.

In 2003, he was selected to first team All-American, won Big East Defensive Player of the Year, and was a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award. Taylor picked off 10 passes that season and returned three for touchdowns.

Sean Taylor skipped his senior season to enter the NFL Draft. 


Sean Taylor was selected fifth overall in the 2004 draft. He was the first Miami Hurricane taken in the draft, just in front of Kellen Winslow Jr.m and was a part of a record six Miami players taken in first round.

Taylor had a 40-yard dash time of 4.51, had a 39" vertical, completed 11 bench presses, and scored a 10 on the wonderlic.


Sean Taylor signed a seven-year, $18 million deal with the Redskins after the draft. After signing with Washington, problems soon began.

Taylor skipped a mandatory rookie symposium and was fined $25,000, then was pulled over after a late night party and was charged with drunk driving.

Taylor was fined seven times for late hits, uniform infractions and other violations in his first three seasons in the NFL, including a $17,00 fine for spitting in the face of Michael Pittman.

In 2004, Taylor emerged as the Redskins starting Free Safety and led the team with four interceptions. He was given the nickname "Meast" by his teammates, an abbreviation for half-man, half-beast.

In 2005, he was finally recognized as one of the leagues biggest hitters. He finished the season with 70 tackles and two interceptions.

In 2006, Taylor led the Redskins defense with 129 tackles and three forced fumbles. He led the league in missed tackles that season, but was named to the Pro Bowl team regardless.

Well into the 2007 season, Sean Taylor was tied for the league-lead in interceptions with five.

Then, he was shot and died. The week after his death, on the first defensive play, the 'Skins decided only to put 10 men on the field to honor Sean.

On December 18th, Taylor was selected to the Pro Bowl game, the first ever player to be selected to a Pro Bowl game after his death. During the Pro Bowl game, every Redskins player wore #21 to honor their fallen teammate.


Sean Taylor was shot by four men in an apparent homicide in his home last November. The four men didn't expect Taylor to be home since it was a weekend during the football season, but since he was injured, he was told not to go to the Redskin's game that Sunday.

The intruders were suprised to see Taylor and his machete, they shot him in his upper leg. The bullet severed his femoral artery.

He was air lifted to a nearby hospital and underwent surgery after losing a significant amount of blood. After surgery, Sean went into a coma and doctors speculated that he had a brain injury from the blood loss.

On November 27th, at 3:30 AM, Sean Taylor died in the hospital.

Many believed that he was playing at an All-Pro level at the time of his death. This potential Hall of Famer will be missed dearly in game of football. His aura and presence will never be forgotten by fans, coaches and other players.

R.I.P. Sean Taylor (1983-2007)