South Floridan, from New York Jet goes from the Gridiron to the Greens
It’s hard to find two sports that are polar opposites more than golf and soccer, Stevie Anderson argues that there are some similarities between the two sports. Anderson, who spent five years completing acrobatic sacks in the NFL, is connecting the dots between sports by making serious strides in his quest for a career on the PGA tour.
Anderson is one of three brothers from Jonesboro, Louisiana, a small bucolic town, who surprisingly all played in the NFL. He now finds himself, everywhere, at the links, where he travels across the country playing PGA qualifying tournaments.
While it’s obvious from the power of his swing that Anderson has the physical goods to play on the road, it’s still a mammoth challenge ahead of him. Anderson has spent his entire life overcoming obstacles. He defied all the odds when the Arizona Cardinals drafted him in the eighth round of the NFL in 1993 after playing at Grambling State, an obscure college with an enrollment of just 5,000 students.
Anderson was a very special player at Grambling State, a historic black university where he had the luxury of playing for legendary football coach Eddie Robinson, the second-winningest coach in major league football history. However, playing for Robinson had its drawbacks.
Robinson maintained a strict rule, in which every veteran on the team, be it a superstar or a bench warmer, got a chance to play. In Anderson’s case, this resulted in halftime. Robinson applied this measure to give seniors a chance to be seen by scouts.
While this unconventional coaching philosophy was noble to Robinson, it severely handicapped Anderson’s ability to put up the high numbers as a wide receiver often required of players on teams not on the radar of NFL scouts.
Anderson’s senior year was by far his most successful. He made the most of every one of his 36 receptions turning them into a staggering 12 touchdowns. For you math fanatics, this translates to one touchdown for every three receptions.
These numbers were good enough for Anderson to be invited to play in the Hawaiian Hula Bowl, college football’s all-star game, a rarity for players from small programs like Grambling State, despite their heritage as alumni producers. of the NFL, whose list includes Doug Williams, the first African-American quarterback to win a Super Bowl in league history.
The 215-pound, 6-6 wide receiver endowed with blinding speed, size and length, Anderson was handsomely rewarded for his stellar college career when he was drafted in the eighth round by the Arizona Cardinals in 1993. Anderson went on to play five years. in the NFL with both the Arizona Cardinals and the New York Jets.
In his fifth NFL season while competing against the Seattle Seahawks, he suffered a career-ending injury after executing a routine passing pattern. Anderson’s defender tripped him and then landed awkwardly on his knee, tearing his Posterior Crucial Ligament (PCL). After he finished his football career, Anderson made a successful transition into a modeling career and his life seemed to be on the right track.
Now the sport of golf is his vocation. If history repeats itself for Anderson, the returning kid, you’ll see him race on the same green grass as Tiger Woods one day in the not too distant future after an illustrious career on the gridiron.