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Thread: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

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    Member Frank Slade's Avatar
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    Default At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down


    By MICHAEL MAROT, AP Sports Writer
    September 12, 2006



    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Talk to Marvin Harrison's friends, teammates or opponents and they'll tell you everything still looks the same. The crisp patterns, the uncanny fakes, the relentless workouts, even the old-school flip after touchdowns.

    Honestly, Harrison hasn't changed much since coming into the league a decade ago. At an age, 34, many NFL players ponder life after football, Harrison is still in great shape, one of the NFL's most productive receivers and playing like a man 10 years younger.

    He expects nothing less.

    "You just have to work hard and give 100 percent on every route," the six-time Pro Bowler said. "It's not only making the route look good, it's about making people think you're going to get by them every time."

    Harrison has done more than merely gotten by.

    He routinely outperforms 1996 draft classmates, guys like Keyshawn Johnson, Eric Moulds and Terry Glenn, and has piled up milestones at an unfathomable pace.

    He needs 64 catches to become the fourth player in league history with 1,000 career receptions.

    Seven more catches will break Jerry Rice's mark for most receptions in a player's first 11 NFL seasons and there are still 15 games remaining.

    He needs five receptions to pass Art Monk for No. 5 all-time.


    The list of records is so long now, Harrison sometimes struggles to keep track.

    Aside from topping the Colts' receiving charts, he holds the NFL's single-season receptions mark (143 in 2002), shares the league record with Rice for most 100-reception seasons (four) and ranks second all-time in 100-yard games (54). Harrison and Peyton Manning also have combined for more completions (792), yards (10,655) and TDs (94) than any tandem in league history.

    By the end of 2006, Harrison's list is likely to expand again. With 110 TDs and 670 career points, he's on the verge of breaking Lenny Moore's franchise records for touchdowns (113) and scoring among nonkickers (678).

    And as he demonstrated in Sunday's 26-21 victory over New York, age -- like the NFL's defensive backs -- hasn't caught up to the Colts' oldest player. He had nine catches for 113 yards, another typical day in Harrison's remarkable world.

    The key is repetition.

    "The thing about Marvin, is I remember talking to Aaron Glenn once, and he said the first 12 yards, everything looks the same," said Manning, the two-time MVP. "He said you can't tell what he's running, so you've got to think he's going deep. That, to me, is the ultimate compliment to a receiver."

    Harrison takes his job seriously. He rarely misses a practice, never seems to tire and is always one of the Colts best-conditioned athletes.

    He's also old-school.

    Rather than wasting energy trading banter, complaining or drawing attention to himself with theatric celebrations, Harrison responds to big plays like another Jim Brown, another Syracuse grad: with professionalism.

    After one of his most memorable receptions -- a diving, twisting one-handed grab at Tennessee in 2003 -- Harrison jumped up and simply waved his teammates down the field to run the next play. That's about as demonstrative as Harrison gets.

    The Colts, including Harrison, insist he's had more impressive catches in practice where he routinely beats defensive backs even when they know what's coming.

    But what turned the Manning-to-Harrison connection from one of the league's most feared to the greatest ever was the rapport they developed in the late '90s by practicing the same routes over and over.

    Manning tells the story how they would sometimes work on only one route during a regular practice day. It's an example he still uses to educate Colts receivers.

    "Reggie (Wayne), to me, made the greatest one-year maturation of anyone I've ever seen," Manning said. "It was like all of a sudden he kind of figures out why (I'm) throwing to Marvin all the time -- it's because Marvin doesn't miss practice. Reggie figures that out and you see what happened."

    Wayne did the unthinkable in 2005, wresting the Colts' season receiving title away from Harrison. Wayne finished with 83 catches, one more than Harrison, ending his six-year reign as the team's receiving leader.

    Coach Tony Dungy considers that more a result of how defenses played Indy than an indication Harrison might be slowing down.

    "I think he's probably the same as he was as a rookie," Dungy said. "You have teams last year that tried to take away the pass and he still makes 82 catches.

    "I've not been around a guy quite like him, who it means so much to do his job week in and week out," Dungy added. "There are times in practice where he just goes in there with (backup quarterback) Jim Sorgi because he wants to catch more passes."

    About the only thing Harrison hasn't done during his first decade in the league is win a Super Bowl. He's hoping that changes as he starts his second decade in the NFL.

    Other than that, Harrison won't change. He still feels young and intends to keep playing as long as it's still fun -- something that should make opposing defensive backs cringe.

    "I'm sure I've learned some different things over the years as far as speed and quickness and hands," he said. "It definitely doesn't feel like 11 years, but I'm enjoying it."


    Updated on Tuesday, Sep 12, 2006 2:27 pm EDT

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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    He's a pro's pro.
    Don't ask Marvin Harrison what he did during the bye week. "Batman never told where the Bat Cave is," he explained.

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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    That's amazing. I didn't even realize that he's been around for so long. I knew it, but it never occurs to me when I watch him play. It's so awesome to see his name next to Rice's and Monk's.

    That's pretty funny about Wayne: "he noticed that Marvin didn't miss practice, so he didn't miss practice anymore."
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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    I don't follow the Colts that closely, but I had no idea he was 34 years old. Would have guessed maybe 30 or 31 tops

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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    This article explains in very good detail why a guy like TO, who admittedly is more talented than Marvin, will never be as good as Marvin. Marvin is a sure fire first ballot HOFer if he quit right now. I can't even imagine what his career stats will look like should he hang on for 5 more years. If he keeps it going, he has an outside shot at some of Rice's records. No other receiver playing today can say the same.

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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    Quote Originally Posted by travmil View Post
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    This article explains in very good detail why a guy like TO, who admittedly is more talented than Marvin, will never be as good as Marvin. Marvin is a sure fire first ballot HOFer if he quit right now. I can't even imagine what his career stats will look like should he hang on for 5 more years. If he keeps it going, he has an outside shot at some of Rice's records. No other receiver playing today can say the same.
    He's already looking some of Rice's records in the eyes. I think the fact that he and Peyton are the most prolific duo ever (completions, yards, TDs) is amazing. Not to mention how close Marvin is to the points record. If Marvin sticks around for another 5 years, his numbers will be outrageous. He will seriously be discussed, after he retires, as possibly the GOAT. When (yeah, not 'if') Harrison gets a ring, there will never be another conversation about the best WR all-time that simply ends at "Jerry Rice" - it'll at least be a debate between Rice and Harrison.
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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    Jerry Rice has always been my favorite all time football player. Marvin is like him in so many ways its amazing. The difference is that Marvin won't fade out by trying to hang on for as long as Jerry did. I feel like Marvin is going to go out the same way Reggie did, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    Yeah, Marvin will probably go out with a 100 yard game and two touchdowns. The difference between Marvin and Reggie will be that Marvin will be going out as Super Bowl MVP...
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    Default Re: At 34, Colts' Harrison shows no signs of slowing down {Yahoo.com}

    Yeah, let's see some rings first.

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