Chris Simms: Wikis


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Chris Simms

Simms after a Broncos game on November 22, 2009
No. --     Free Agent
Personal information
Date of birth: August 29, 1980 (1980-08-29) (age 29)
Place of birth: Ridgewood, New Jersey
Height: 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) Weight: 230 lb (104 kg)
Career information
College: Texas
NFL Draft: 2003 / Round: 3 / Pick: 97
Debuted in 2004 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Career history
 As player:
Career highlights and awards
  • ESPN RISE National High School Junior Player of the Year (1997)
  • USA Today Offensive High School Player of the Year (1998)
  • College Records and Awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 15, 2009
Pass attempts     511
Pass completions     297
Percentage     58.1
TD-INT     12-18
Passing yards     3,117
QB Rating     69.1
Stats at

Christopher David Simms (born August 29, 1980 in Ridgewood, New Jersey) is an American football quarterback who is currently a free agent. He was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the third round of in the 2003 NFL Draft. He played college football at Texas.

Simms has also played for the Tennessee Titans and Denver Broncos. He is the son of former NFL quarterback Phil Simms.


Early years

Simms attended Ramapo High School in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, and was a standout in both football and basketball. In football, he was a two-time All-State honoree, and was named the 1998 USA Today National Offensive Player of the Year. Chris Simms, nicknamed "Goldenrod" by his classmates, graduated from Ramapo High School in 1999.[1] After committing to the University of Tennessee during his senior year, Simms decommitted and enrolled at the University of Texas instead.[2]

College career

Simms during a Texas Longhorns football team autograph session

Simms played college football at the University of Texas at Austin. In a controversial decision, Simms was named starter over Major Applewhite in 2001, before Applewhite's senior season. After turning the ball over four times in the 2001 Big Twelve Championship Game, Simms gave way to fan favorite Applewhite, who led a stirring comeback against Colorado. Applewhite later passed for a then school record 473 yards as the starter in the Holiday bowl.


Career statistics

Year Passing Rushing
Comp Att Yards TDs Int Att Yds Avg TD
1999 19 36 223 2 1 11 22 2.0 0
2000 67 117 1,064 8 7 26 -25 -1.0 0
2001 214 362 2,603 22 11 52 -10 -0.2 6
2002 235 396 3,207 26 12 70 -124 -1.8 4
Totals 535 911 7,094 58 31 159 -137 -0.2 10

Accomplishments and records

University of Texas Records

  • 2nd Highest Passer Rating (Career) - 138.4. (Behind Colt McCoy)
  • 3rd Best Winning Percentage (Career) - 26-6, 0.812 (Behind Bobby Layne and Vince Young).
  • 3rd Most Touchdowns (Career) - 58 (Behind Major Applewhite and Colt McCoy).
  • 2nd Most Touchdowns (Single Season) - 26 (Behind Colt McCoy, tied with Vince Young).
  • 2nd Most Touchdowns (Single Game) - 5 (Behind Colt McCoy, tied with Bobby Layne).
  • 3rd most passing yards in a game (vs Nebraska) - 419 (Behind Major Applewhite & Colt McCoy).[3]

Professional career

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Simms was drafted with the last pick of the 3rd round in 2003 by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with the expectation that he would eventually be the successor to Brad Johnson. He was cast 3rd on the Bucs depth chart behind Johnson and former Buccaneers starter Shaun King. Simms sat his entire rookie year without playing a single snap in the regular season.[4]

In 2004, Simms started the season as the 3rd string quarterback again, this time behind Johnson and former Denver Broncos and Miami Dolphins starter Brian Griese, but quickly advanced to backup quarterback after a poor preseason by Griese. Simms saw his first action on September 19, 2004 against the Seattle Seahawks after a below-average performance by Johnson, coming into the game with 10:32 left in the 2nd quarter. Simms went 21-32 with 175 yards and an interception.[5] Simms received his first start two games later against the New Orleans Saints on October 10, 2004 after the Bucs started 0-4 and Johnson was benched for his poor performance. Simms went 5-8 for 75 yards but injured his shoulder early in the game and missed three weeks, allowing Brian Griese to secure the position with 3 straight wins. Simms saw occasional action as the backup QB to Griese and started a meaningless final game against the Arizona Cardinals where he threw for 224 yards, 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions.[6]

In 2005, Simms was slated on the depth chart as the backup quarterback, behind Griese and ahead of former Cleveland Browns starting quarterback Luke McCown. Simms got his first snap of the season after Miami Dolphins linebacker Zach Thomas was pushed onto Griese's leg with several minutes left in the game on October 16, 2005. Despite the injury, the Buccaneers prevailed 27-13 in the game in which Griese was lost for the season. Simms performed well, completing 6 of 10 passes for 69 yards.[7] Simms got his first start of the season the following week against a weak San Francisco 49ers squad. While Simms had decent numbers (21-34, 264yds, 1TD, 2INT), his performance was considered poor, as there were many times when he underthrew his receivers, missed open receivers, or incorrectly read the defensive coverage. Simms followed up this performance with about the same performance (25-42, 259, 1TD, 2INT) against the division rival Carolina Panthers, who were considered a much better team than San Francisco. Since these two losses however, Simms has performed better than expected and has a knack for late-game heroics. He led fourth-quarter charges against fellow division rival Atlanta twice, as well as the Washington Redskins. The Redskin game was his best performance of the year as Simms threw for 3 scores as the Buccaneers won 36-35 in a remarkable game. Simms had a much more impressive performance in the rematch against Carolina on the road. The two losses in this stretch were against the defending Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots, and the Chicago Bears, who were ranked #1 in the league in total defense, and in both of these games, Simms did not throw any interceptions, and was sacked a combined 11 times. He even led Tampa Bay to another fourth-quarter comeback against the Bears but a 29-yard field goal attempt floated wide right giving the Bears a 13-10 victory.[8]

Simms led the Buccaneers to their first playoff berth since their Super Bowl victory in the 2002. In the rematch vs. the Redskins Simms led Tampa Bay back again from a 17–3 halftime deficit. With the score at 17–10 late in the fourth quarter, Simms hit Edell Shepherd on an apparent 35-yard TD strike. However, Shepherd failed to maintain possession as he hit the ground. Tampa Bay lost 17–10 in a game where Washington gained only 120 yards of offense, the lowest total for a playoff winner in NFL history.[9]

Chris Simms had played well at the end of the 2005 season, and thus came into the 2006 season with high expectations around him. However, for no particular obvious reason, Simms's play in the first two weeks was abysmal. In back-to-back games against the Baltimore Ravens and Atlanta Falcons, Simms posted up 45 completions on 82 attempts for 446 yards, but had zero touchdowns and six interceptions. He continued to have several of his passes tipped by defensive linemen. Largely due to his inexplicably poor play, the Bucs scored a mere 3 points in two games.

Life-Threatening Injury

Simms suffered a season-ending injury in Game 3 of the 2006 schedule. On Sunday, September 24, he was taken off the field after taking hard hits from the Carolina Panthers defense. Simms returned to the game and even led a successful scoring drive, but remained in physical distress and was taken to a nearby hospital after the game. Tests revealed a ruptured spleen, and Simms immediately underwent emergency surgery. In the aftermath, Simms said he lost five pints of blood before the operation and conceded that another 45 minutes without treatment could have been fatal. Though not proven, it has been suggested that the injury was caused by an illegal hit from Al Wallace who was later fined by the NFL.[10] Simms has become a spokesman in the Tampa area for blood donations.[11] Playing on a one-year/$2.1 million contract signed before the season, Simms was eligible for free agency for 2007.

On December 27, 2006, Simms announced that he had signed a two-year extension to remain with the Buccaneers with the expectation that he would start. However, due to complications from his recovery and the performance of Jeff Garcia in mini-camp, Simms was expected to serve as a backup to Garcia.[12] On October 9, Simms was placed on Injured Reserve for the rest of the season.[13] The Bucs were expected to keep Simms on the roster for mini camp as their fifth quarterback.

Simms' relationship with head coach Jon Gruden worsened significantly during this period. Simms attributed his lack of playing time to how Gruden treated Simms during his recovery from spleen injury. He has even said that "The relationship between me and coach Gruden, it’s broken," Simms said. "And I don’t see any way it’s going to get better." Simms also said that he will never forgive Gruden, although he still respects the Buccaneers as an organization.[14]

On August 30, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers released Simms. He worked out with the Baltimore Ravens during the preseason but was not signed.

Tennessee Titans

Simms signed with the Tennessee Titans on September 9, 2008 after starter Vince Young was sidelined with a sprained MCL.[15] In Young's absence, Simms served as the backup quarterback behind Kerry Collins until October 3, when Simms was released to make room for punter Josh Miller. Simms was re-signed the following week on October 6.

Denver Broncos

Simms on the sidelines in 2009.

On March 4, 2009, Simms signed a two-year, $6 million contract with the Denver Broncos. The deal includes a $1.5 million signing bonus and Simms can earn an additional $3 million through incentives. He is currently the backup quarterback to Kyle Orton. However, he took over in the second half of a game against the Washington Redskins after Orton left with a sprained ankle, and eventually gave up the lead to the Redskins while going 3-13 passing for 13 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. He started against the San Diego Chargers on November 22, 2009 but was quickly replaced by Orton in the second quarter after going a disappointing 2 for 4 for only 10 yards. He was released on March 15, 2010 after the Broncos traded for Brady Quinn.[16]

Career statistics

Year Games Passing Rushing
Comp Att Pct Yards TDs Int Rating Att Yds Avg TD
2003 0 0 0 0.0% 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0.0 0
2004 5 42 73 57.5% 467 1 3 64.1 7 14 2.0 0
2005 11 191 313 61.0% 2,035 10 7 81.4 19 31 1.6 0
2006 3 58 106 54.7% 585 1 7 46.3 4 7 1.8 1
2007 0 0 0 0.0% 0 0 0 0.0 0 0 0 0
2008 1 1 2 50.0% 7 0 0 58.3 0 0 0.0 0
2009 2 5 17 29.4% 23 0 1 15.1 0 0 0 0
Totals 22 297 511 58.1% 3,117 12 18 69.1 30 52 1.7 1


Simms married Danielle Marie Puleo in August 2004, whom he first met in high school.[17] In 2006, Danielle gave birth to a baby girl Charlotte Elizabeth.

His younger brother, Matt Simms[18], was a quarterback at the University of Louisville before transferring to El Camino College, a junior college in Torrance, CA. Matt signed a letter of intent to transfer and play for the University of Tennessee on December 16th, 2009.[19]


External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Major Applewhite
University of Texas Quarterback
Succeeded by
Chance Mock
Preceded by
Brian Griese
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Starting Quarterbacks
Succeeded by
Tim Rattay


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