Thursday, October 16, 2008

HINES (a.k.a. "Fines") WARD career review and photo gallery

2008 "Blackened Gold" Award Winning Story
The heart and soul of the Pittsburgh Steelers
Because of the media reports that have been stirred up by the two fines that have been imposed in recent weeks by the NFL on Hines Ward for "unnecessary roughness", we thought it appropriate to do a definitive Hines Ward photo gallery and career review on the greatest Pittsburgh Steelers receiver ever, bar none. So fasten your chin strap and have your head on a swivel, 'cause here goes!

Hines E. Ward, Jr. (Korean: 하인스 워드/Kim Hyun-ae) was born March 8, 1976 in Seoul, South Korea to a South Korean mother and an African-American father. Since winning Superbowl XL and becoming the MVP in that game, he has become an advocate for ethnic minorities in South Korea. and an international celebrity.

Holding son after Super Bowl (above)
Kissing Mom
At Forest Park Higfh School in Forest Park, Georgia, Ward showcased his athletic skills as a quarterback and was a two-time Clayton County Offensive Player of the Year. He earned All American honors from Super Prep, Blue Chip Illustrated & USA Today, as well as All State and Super Southern Top 100 honors.

Hines presents autographed Super Bowl football to South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun. Ward waived his customary $200 charge for this special occasion.
Strutting after a score...

Leaping for joy after Super Bowl catch from Randle-El

As a wide receiver for the University of Georgia Bulldogs (1995–1998), Ward's 149 career receptions for 1,965 yards placed him second in team history. He also played tailback and quarterback and totaled 3,870 all-purpose yards, second only to Herschel Walker in Bulldogs history. In 1996, Hines had 52 receptions for 900 yards, and also ran 26 times for 170 yards. In 1997, he hauled in 55 passes and scored six TDs, getting All-SEC honors in the process.

When he came out of college it was discovered that Ward was missing an ACL in his left knee, which he lost during a bicycle accident during childhood. This may well have affected his position in the NFL draft. He received his bachelors degree in consumer economics from UGA, where he became a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity.

Ward's versatility has served him well as a professional wide receiver. Since being drafted by the Steelers in the third round of the 1998 NFL draft, he has earned three team Most Valuable Player selections. He is also a four-time NFL Pro Bowl selection (2001–2004). He also had a streak of 4 consecutive 1,000 yard seasons, which likely could have been extended in the 2005 NFL season if he had not missed a game due to injury. In 2002, he set a Steelers franchise record for receptions (112), and touchdowns (12), and was named to his first of two consecutive All-NFL teams. He is widely considered the best blocking receiver in the NFL.

Quick to smile...quick to lay the lumber

In 2005, Ward missed the first two weeks of training camp in a holdout for a contract extension that would increase his salary. Ward had considered holding out before camp in 2004, but had been persuaded by the Steelers that they could work out an extension during the year. Ward eventually showed up on Auguat 15, 2005 and was on the sidelines for Pittsburgh's first preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles that night, though he did not play in that game. On September 5, 2005, the Steelers announced that they had reached an agreement on a four-year contract extension with Ward.

On November 27, 2005, Ward became the Steelers all-time leading receiver with his 538th catch against the Cleveland browns on “Sunday Night Football”l overcoming John Stallworth's record. The Steelers won the game 34-21.

Ward is also renowned as a terrific post-season receiver, accumulating 57 receptions, 761 yards, and 8 receiving touchdowns in 10 post-season appearances (including his Super Bowl XL appearance, in which he was named the Super Bowl MVP). In that game which the Steelers won over the Seattle Seahawks 21-10, Ward scored a 43 yard touchdown in the 4th quarter, thrown by fellow wide receiver Antwaan Randle El. Overall, Ward had five receptions for 123 yards, one TD and one carry for 18 yards.

Don't let this smile deceive you!

Immediately following Super Bowl XL Ward was videotaped for the latest "I'm Going to Disney World!" TV commercial, adding "...and I'm taking The Bus!" Ward and Steelers teammate Jerome “The Bus” Bettis also appeared in a victory parade at Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park.

On December 2, 2007, Ward became the Steelers all-time touchdown receptions leader with his 64th touchdown reception against the Cincinnati Bengals. Then on December 20th, Ward became the Steelers all-time receiving yardage leader in a game against the St. Louis Rams.

This season in the opener, Hines Ward scored 2 touchdowns as the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Houston Texans 38-17 and coming out of what many sports analysts say was a “two-year slump”. He scored two touchdowns and had 6 receptions for 76 yards. If it hadn’t been for a pass interference call, (which cost the Steelers 54 yards) Ward would have recorded his first 100-yard game since the 2006 season.
Celebrating a Fifth Super Bowl Championship
While Ward has continued to have a very productive season in 2008, it has been marred in the last two weeks by two major penalties for unnecessary roughness that were assessed in the week following each contest. Ward was first given a $5,000 fine and then had that followed up by a $10,000 fine last week.

The Steelers organization has been enraged by these fines because they did not even merit a penalty flag during each of the games. Ward is generally acknowledged as being the hardest hitting receiver in football history to go along with his impressive receiving statistics. But the Steelers are also proud of their long-running reputation for hard hitting on the field, even by their wide receivers. Therefore it’s understandable why Mike Tomlin and even Steelers Chairman, Dan Rooney, would be defending the play of their all-time-best-receiver.

With the season only six weeks old, the Steelers stand with a sparkling 4-1 record. During that span, Ward has 24 catches for 316 yards, a 13.2 yards per catch average and four touchdowns. At his current pace, Ward would score 12 touchdowns and have 76 catches for 1,011 yards. Not a bad start to a season for a man who already owns every Steeler receiving record on the books.

Special thanks to Wikipedia for statistical data!
Hines Ward leers over a fallen Bengal. Taunting flag soon to
follow in the "No Fun League".
Hines Ward Vital StatisticsPittsburgh SteelersNo. 86Wide receiver
Date of birth: March 8, 1976 (1976-03-08) (age 32)
Place of birth:
Seoul, South Korea
Height: 6 ft 0 in
Weight: 205
Professional debut
1998 for the
Pittsburgh Steelers
Career historyCollege: Georgia
NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 3 / Pick: 92
Pittsburgh Steelers (1998-Present)
Career highlights and awards
Pro Bowl selection (2001, 2002, 2003, 2004)
All-Pro selection (2002, 2003, 2004)
2002 Steelers co-MVP
2003 Steelers MVP
2005 Steelers co-MVP
Super Bowl XL MVP
Steelers Career Records for Receptions, Receiving Yards, & Receiving TDs
Selected NFL statistics (through Week 5 of the 2008 NFL season)

Receptions 743
Receiving Yards 9,053
Receiving TDs 69
Hines Ward Stats at
Hines with "The Dumptruck" (left) and Nate Washington (right)
The Buccos offered all three contracts after the practice.
Hines with Bill Cowher lookalike.
Hines Ward trivia: There are currently 82,900 images of Hines Ward on Google!