(Born October 11, 1965) -- Fans of the Buffalo Bills will always remember Chris Spielman. They think of his intensity and his drive, and also his heart.
Spielman grew up in Masillon, Ohio, one of the legendary towns in the country for high school football. He was picked as the nation’s top scholar-athlete there, and went on to an All-American career at Ohio State.
The linebacker was drafted by the Lions in 1988, and he was a tackling machine there. Spielman made four Pro Bowls and became the team’s all-time leading tackler.
Spielman jumped to the Bills in 1996, and played two seasons here. He set a team record with 206 tackles. However, his 1997 season was curtailed by a neck injury that forced him out of the lineup.
Spielman started to make a comeback in 1999, but the news that his wife had contracted breast cancer led to his retirement. Stefanie died in 2009. Chris has done some broadcasting and other football-related work since retiring.
--- Budd Bailey