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Comparison Of London Fletcher, Ray Lewis

Posted by Stephen Czarda on December 19, 2013 – 10:13 am

London Fletcher

(AP Image)

The National Football League has changed drastically since 1998. The Houston Texans were still years away from creation, the Tennessee Titans were still the Oilers and the Arizona Cardinals were still misplace in the NFC East.

One thing that hadn’t change until the end of the 2012 season–inside linebackers London Fletcher and Ray Lewis patrolling the center of their respective defensive units.

While the two gladiators are widely regarded as some of the greatest of the modern era, their approach to the game is/was polar opposite.

Lewis decided to hang up his cleats after tasting Super Bowl success again in February, leaving Fletcher as one of the few remaining legends who began playing professionally before the turn of the century. On Wednesday, Fletcher said he might follow him into the land of retirement following the season.

While the debate rages on as to which player is consider “the better” of the two, I instead wanted to take a look at their backgrounds.

Here’s what my research led to:

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LBs Candid About Fletcher’s Assistance

Posted by Stephen Czarda on December 18, 2013 – 4:12 pm

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

It’s the news of the day. Brian Orakpo, London Fletcher

Veteran linebacker London Fletcher walked into the media room deep inside Redskins Park after practice, grabbed the team logoed microphone and announced that he’s 99 percent certain Week 17 will be the last time he dons an NFL jersey with shoulder pads underneath.

Soon after, teammates ranging from fellow old-timer Santana Moss to rookies nearly half his age began reflecting on their time with and under the grizzled four-time Pro Bowler.

Sometimes those of us on the outside forget how much time players spend with one another. The countless hours together often breeds unbreakable bonds that last a lifetime.

Fellow linebacker mates scratched the surface of what Fletcher’s presence has meant to their professional careers shortly after the announcement spread through the Internet:

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Chris Baker Is Ready To Face Old Team

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 25, 2013 – 3:37 pm

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Last Sunday in front of a raucous crowd at FedExField, the Washington Redskins managed many firsts. There was the first home victory of the season, the first Brian Orakpo interception and subsequent pick-six, the first Roy Helu Jr. three touchdown performance, the first 40-point game of 2013 and so on and so forth.

However, there was only one play that deserved it’s own dance—defensive lineman Chris Baker’s first career sack.

Baker is in his second season with the Redskins and is one of the most enjoyable people to be around—football player or not. When it’s time to strap down and get to work, Baker is there ready to contribute whether it be at nose tackle or defensive end. Away from the field, he’s always there to provide a hearty laugh and keep the spirit of the locker room up.

Mike Shanahan won’t be the only notable return to Denver. The Mile High City is where Baker got his big break in the NFL.

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Veteran Fletcher Pleased After OTAs Begin

Posted by Andrew Walker on May 21, 2012 – 3:01 pm

Redskins’ veteran linebacker London Fletcher has seen a few first days of organized team activities in his long career, but the perennial team captain said Monday the excitement heading into the 2012 campaign is unique.

He spoke to the media after Monday’s first day of OTAs.

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A Near-Death Experience Inspires Fletcher

Posted by Brian Tinsman on February 24, 2012 – 11:41 am

via Sports Spectrum Magazine

Redskins linebacker London Fletcher is a leader to his teammates and a hero to his fans.  Whether it’s his fiery passion on the football field or his measured composure in the locker room, Fletcher has built a career on professionalism and playing the game the right way.

But all of that was nearly taken away before it began, on a fateful night back in 1994 on the streets of Cleveland’s East Side.  As Fletcher told Joshua Cooley of Sports Spectrum magazine, his 19-year-old self almost had that all snatched away when confrontation nearly led to bloodshed:

As Fletcher walked away, the other man hurried to his car, drove up beside Fletcher and called to him.  Fletcher looked over.  With an inferno dancing in his eyes, the man pulled out a sawed-off, double-barreled shotgun and pointed it straight at Fletcher. Read more »

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Monday, February 1: A Pro Bowl Weekend

Posted by Matt Terl on February 1, 2010 – 10:26 am

I used to be a relatively big fan of the Pro Bowl, possibly the only one in the world. It was the last gasp of football for the year, and thus something to be treasured no matter how mediocre it might be. And it usually wasn’t all that mediocre; the rule changes more or less guarantee a high-scoring game, and by the fourth quarter the players have realized that — financially, at least — they’d like to win, so the game turns competitive.

Last night, though, I just couldn’t get into it. I don’t know if it’s the move to before the Super Bowl (which removes the whole “last gasp of football” thing) or what, but after watching some of the early touchdowns, I pretty much tuned out.

(As it turns out, I was apparently alone in this feeling; excellent ESPN PR guy Bill Hofmeier reports via Twitter that ratings were up 39% last night. Go figure.) One person who definitely didn’t tune out, though? London Fletcher.

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Friday, January 29: Another Honor For London Fletcher

Posted by Matt Terl on January 29, 2010 – 9:46 am

ESPN’s Matt Mosley released his All NFC East team yesterday afternoon, and …well, the Redskins didn’t fare all that well. When you’re 4-12, I suppose you shouldn’t expect to have a whole lot of players honored in these things, but seeing it in black and white is pretty stark.

The two guys who did get honored were Andre Carter and London Fletcher, which isn’t really a huge surprise — one of them is going to the Pro Bowl, and I was pushing hard to get both of them there. The most obvious snub is the Redskins’ other Pro Bowler, Brian Orakpo. Here’s Mosley’s reasoning on all three: Read more »

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London Fletcher Day: Firing Up The Linebackers

Posted by Matt Terl on January 25, 2010 – 4:17 pm

I’ve written about London Fletcher’s pregame pep talks before, but this Redskins Broadcast Net video does a great job of allowing him to explain them in his own words, and away from the emotions of the moment. (The explanation starts at about 1:40. If you can make it through from there to the end and not want to run through a brick wall for Fletcher, your heart is made of wood.)


Some of the relevant excerpts, although it’s the kind of thing that really works better in the video:

  • Linebackers set the tone: “The tone will be physical, it’s gonna be intense, it’s gonna be passionate, and it’s gonna be all out organized chaos.”

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London Fletcher Day: The Brandon Jacobs Hit

Posted by Matt Terl on January 25, 2010 – 3:11 pm

One of London Fletcher‘s shining moments this year came in the first game of the regular season. He posted 18 tackles in that game — EIGHTEEN tackles — eleven of them solo, but the big one would have to be this hit on running back Brandon Jacobs.

It hasn’t been replayed as much as the big hit from the previous year’s Giants/Redskins opener, but it’s definitely worth revisiting as part of our London Fletcher Day celebration.

A good still image of the hit, after the jump. Read more »

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London Fletcher Day: Indestructible

Posted by Matt Terl on January 25, 2010 – 2:58 pm

From his Defensive Player of the Year honor given at this year’s Welcome Home Luncheon, here’s a London Fletcher 2008 highlight package set to Disturbed’s “Indestructible”. The lesson I learned from this song: putting combat noises at the beginning of your adrenalized rock song is just as annoying now as it was when Metallica did it back in 1988.

http://p.castfire.com/GVrsz/video/235329/redskins_2010-01-25-115844.flv Read more »

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