The League

Doug Farrar
Writer

Doug Farrar

A FootballOutsiders.com staff writer

A Good Man, Gone Too Soon

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What I remember most about Steve McNair was his all-consuming competitiveness. This was a guy who would will himself through injuries that would have put most quarterbacks on the bench - and he did it throughout his career. I always thought that he used this attribute to push his teammates to places they perhaps didn't know they could go. As Baltimore Ravens coach Brian Billick once said, someone would have to drag McNair off the field. I remember the last Titans drive in Super Bowl XXXIV, when Tennessee moved the ball 80-plus yards down the field, but one yard short of the touchdown that would have forced a tie. All of the non-penalty yards on that drive came from McNair's arm, or his feet.

I remember the 2003 season, when he shared the NFL MVP Award with Peyton Manning, and how this was another step in history of the black quarterback. But I also remember that to call Steve McNair a black quarterback and leave it at that was to almost marginalize him in some way - you had to watch the man play to get the whole picture. Then, he wasn't just a black quarterback -- he was a great quarterback beyond this or that label.

Now, what I will remember about Steve McNair is the outpouring of emotion from his ex-coaches and teammates upon his passing. From the men he played with, and the young players he helped. McNair was a community leader, a stand-up guy on the field and in the locker room, the type of player loved and respected by those around him. Beyond the three Pro Bowl appearances, the 31,304 passing yards, and the 174 touchdowns - beyond all the playoff moments and career highlights - that will be his legacy.

Steve McNair was a good man, gone too soon.

By Doug Farrar  |  July 4, 2009; 10:20 PM ET  | Category:  Baltimore Ravens , Doug Farrar Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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He didnt deserve to go this way.

Posted by: Badwisky | July 6, 2009 12:16 PM

A good man?! Our standards really have hit rock bottom!!

Posted by: washington101 | July 6, 2009 1:59 PM

Mr. Farrar, you have a skewed view of reality. All of McNair's on-field heroics are fantasy. The off-the-field reality is that he was a person who had no respect for his marriage or his family. Stand-up guy? Uh, no.

Posted by: cphill851 | July 6, 2009 3:27 PM

Well said. Unlike others, I won't pretend to know what was going on in his personal life. He will be sorely missed by the football world.

Posted by: smutsboy | July 6, 2009 4:42 PM

Too bad McNair didn't respect his family the way the media is respecting him. He ruined his image forever for a skank.

Posted by: nobama2012 | July 6, 2009 6:04 PM

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