SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - One of the best defensive backs in football history spent his anniversary speaking to the Savannah Quarterback Club Monday night.
Former Georgia Bulldog and brand new Pro Football Hall of Famer Champ Bailey was the guest speaker for the group’s weekly Monday meeting. Of course, the Dawgs’ 2019 season, Kirby Smart, and Georgia’s stellar defense were among popular topics.
Bailey has seen some great defenses in his career, and he thinks the Dawgs have a championship one in Athens.
“When I watch them and how they play, how they take pride just being a great run defense, that means a lot. When you win late in the year or if you want to win a championship, you have to play great defense. For some reason, we’ve got that formula figured out," Bailey says. "I’m just looking forward to us getting a little better. As long as the offense controls the tempo and converts third downs, nobody can beat us.”
Bailey was a 12-time Pro Bowler with Denver and Washington, a three-time All-Pro First Team selection, won the Bronco Nagurski Award as the nation’s top defensive player in 1998, and was a consensus All-American the same year.
He retired in 2014 after 15 years in the NFL, and was selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in his first year eligible in 2019.
Bailey says the Hall of Fame gives him a platform to give back to the sport, especially to young people like the Club’s Player of the Week honorees sitting front row Monday.
“I understand now that there’s a lot of responsibility that comes with that. When I look and see these two young men in front of me, I have to make sure I say the right things because those guys are listening. I used to be just like them,” Bailey says. “I’m just trying to make sure I lead by example as I continue life after football.”
Bailey helped honor the Savannah QB Club’s Player of the Week winners. Jenkins’ Damozzio Harris is the offensive player of the week after rushing for 145 yards and two touchdowns in the Warriors’ 34-9 win over Benedictine. Savannah Christian’s Mike Vidan is the defensive player of the week. Vidan had 11 tackles, three for loss, and an interception in the Raiders’ 41-0 win over Montgomery County.