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Mark Brunell

Brunell during his tenure with the Washington Redskins.
No. --     Free Agent
Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: September 17, 1970 (1970-09-17) (age 39)
Place of birth: Santa Maria, California
Height: 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) Weight: 217 lb (98 kg)
Career information
College: Washington
NFL Draft: 1993 / Round: 5 / Pick: 118
Debuted in 1993 for the Green Bay Packers
Career history
 As player:
Roster status: Unrestricted Free Agent
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2009
TD-INT     182-107
Passing yards     31,928
QB Rating     83.9
Stats at NFL.com

Mark Allen Brunell (born September 17, 1970, in Santa Maria, California) is an American football quarterback for the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League. He was originally drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the fifth round of the 1993 NFL Draft. He played college football at Washington.

Brunell, who was a three-time Pro Bowl selection with the Jacksonville Jaguars, has also played for the Washington Redskins and New Orleans Saints in his career. He was the backup quarterback and holder for the Saints' Super Bowl XLIV Championship team.

Contents

Biography

Early years

Brunell was the starting quarterback for the St. Joseph High School Knights of Santa Maria, CA in the 1985, 86, and 87 seasons. Brunell led his team to two league championships and one appearance in the CIF finals, California's version of the state championship series.

College career

Brunell signed with the University of Washington out of high school in a highly touted recruiting class that included future NFL players Lincoln Kennedy and Steve Emtman. Brunell saw his first action in his Redshirt Freshman year, and took over the starting duties in his sophomore season. Brunell's abilities as a run-pass combo quarterback flashed potential from his first start. In his third start, Brunell led the Huskies in a 31-0 romp over a highly ranked USC team which established the Huskies of the early 1990's as a potential force in Pac-10 football. While Brunell continued to develop throughout his first season as a starter the Huskies climbed in the rankings. An early season loss to the eventual national champion University of Colorado and late season 22-25 loss to UCLA were the only losses for what, by seasons end, was a dominant Husky team. With the Huskies crowned Pac-10 champions, Brunell played his best game yet in the Rose Bowl and was named the game's MVP as Washington coasted to a 46-34 win over Big Ten Conference Champion Iowa.

Though the Huskies finished the season ranked 5th in the Associated Press poll, one poll crowned them National Champions. Irrespective of their final ranking, the Huskies, with Brunell's star rising, seemed set to soar to even loftier heights in 1991. Brunell was expected to lead the Huskies in 1991, but a devastating knee injury in the annual Husky spring game would sideline Brunell and cast the Husky hopes for a National Championship run in doubt. Brunell, however, was capably replaced by Puyallup, Washington native Billy Joe Hobert and the University of Washington went on to win their first 2 games in Brunell's absence. Though Brunell was not yet fully recovered, he returned months ahead of schedule to action in Washington's third game in 1991. Brunell received a standing ovation upon his return in the 56-3 victory over Kansas State.

Brunell would play occasionally in the remainder of Husky games as the season progressed, but usually entered the games well after the outcomes were no longer in doubt. The 1991 University of Washington team defeated every regular season opponent with most games providing plenty of playing time for younger and back up players.

On January 1, 1992, Brunell played a small role (but threw a touchdown pass to Mario Bailey) in Washington's second straight Rose Bowl victory, this time over the University of Michigan. Washington finished the season ranked first in the UPI poll and 2nd the Associated Press poll behind the University of Miami.

In 1992, with two successful quarterbacks returning (Hobert and Brunell), Brunell was unable to wrestle the starting QB spot away from Hobert and as such contributed in a limited role during the University of Washington's first 8 games (all wins). However, during the week of November 2, 1992, the Los Angeles Times ran an exposé on Washington football wherein current starter Billy Joe Hobert was implicated in actions seemingly in violation of NCAA rules. As a result, Hobert was immediately suspended and Brunell was thrust back into the starting role for the Huskies. Now a senior, Brunell steered the devastated Huskies to one win in their last three regular season games. The Huskies, however, again won the Pac-10 and Brunell started his second Rose Bowl game, this time against Michigan.

Statistics

Year Comp Att Comp % Passing TD INT
1990 132 275 48.0 1,895 16 9
1992 127 219 58.0 1,609 7 4

Professional career

NFL Draft

Following his senior season, Mark Brunell was selected by the Green Bay Packers in the 5th round of the 1993 NFL Draft. Many voices in the Seattle media were openly critical of the hometown Seahawks (who possessed the 2nd overall selection in the draft) for choosing to take Notre Dame QB Rick Mirer instead of waiting to select Brunell.

Jacksonville Jaguars

He was acquired in 1995 by the Jacksonville Jaguars in a trade for a 3rd round and 5th round pick in the 1995 draft. That year, Brunell started 13 games, completed 201 out of 346 passes, for 2,168 yards, with 15 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. He also rushed for 480 yards.

During his years in Jacksonville, Brunell was selected to the Pro Bowl three times, in 1997, 1998, and 2000 and awarded the Pro Bowl MVP in the 1997 game. With Brunell starting, the Jaguars won an AFC Central Division title and became the first NFL expansion team to make the playoffs three times in its first four seasons of play. The furthest he led the team was to the 1996 AFC Championship Game, which they lost to the New England Patriots. They returned again in 1999, but would lose to the Tennessee Titans.

Brunell was benched by new Jaguars General Manager VP James Shack Harris in favor of Byron Leftwich following halftime of the third game of the 2003 season. It would be the final time Brunell took the field as a member of the Jaguars.

Washington Redskins

2004

He was traded to the Washington Redskins prior to the 2004 season.

During the 2004 season, limited by a hamstring injury, Brunell struggled and would be benched midseason for backup quarterback Patrick Ramsey. Ramsey's play towards the end of that season and following pre-season would lead to a quarterback controversy where Brunell would be benched going into the 2005 season. This would change in 2005 after Ramsey suffered an early season injury that thrust Brunell back into the starter's role.

2005

In 2005, Brunell played much better and led the team to a 10–6 record and a playoff victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He finished third in the 2005 NFL Comeback Player of the Year awards.

Brunell's most prolific moment in the 2005 season was during Week 2, when he completed two long passes to wide receiver Santana Moss for two touchdowns in the final four minutes of the fourth quarter to defeat the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football, 14–13.

2006

On September 24, 2006, Brunell broke the NFL record for most consecutive completions in single game when he completed his first 22 passes against the Houston Texans. Brunell also set the Redskins franchise record for highest completion percentage in a single game (88.9%). The previous record was held by Hall of Fame quarterback Sammy Baugh for 66 years (87.5%).

On November 13, 2006, after winning only three of their first nine games of 2006, Brunell was benched in favor of Jason Campbell, Washington's 2005 first round draft pick. Many experts and teammates felt he was the scapegoat for a team that was under performing across the board.

2007

Brunell underwent surgery on January 8, 2007, to repair a damaged labrum in his throwing shoulder, but returned in time for training camp.

In 2007, Mark Brunell was surpassed on the Redskins' depth chart by Todd Collins.

New Orleans Saints

On March 13, 2008, Brunell was signed by the New Orleans Saints.[1] He entered the 2008 season as the backup to Drew Brees. He did not appear in a game in 2008. In 2009 he appeared in all 16 games as the holder on the Saints place-kicking unit, and saw his first playing time at quarterback in 3 years during a week 17 loss to the Carolina Panthers, as the Saints had already clinched homefield advantage and rested starter Drew Brees, as well as many other starters. On January 24, 2010, Brunell was the holder on the 40 yard field goal kicked by Garrett Hartley in overtime against the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Championship game to send the New Orleans Saints to the team's first ever Super Bowl. On February 7, 2010, Mark Brunell won a Super Bowl ring with the New Orleans Saints when the Saints defeated the Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV, 31-17.

Christian life

Brunell and his family are active members of the Metro Morningstar Church (now Every Nation). When they were living in Florida, Brunell was very active within Southpoint Community Church, a church on the southside of Jacksonville that he helped found. He was also one of the most involved members of Champions for Christ. He also conducted volunteer work at the University of North Florida.

Brunell's links with Champions for Christ has garnered some controversy, with the National Football League investigating CFC over concerns that players were being taken advantage of financially.[2][3]

When Washington Redskins quarterback Jason Campbell, who played quarterback for the team after Brunell, was asked what player he learned the most from in his career, Campbell said it was Mark Brunell, "launching into a nice tribute about how the man he replaced helped him become a better person off the field."[4]

Family

Brunell is married to Stacy with a daughter, Caitlin, and three sons: Jacob, Joseph and Luke[5], Caitlin won the Miss Virginia's Outstanding Teen title in 2007 and then the Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2008 in a national pageant held in Orlando in August 2007. She now attends Providence School in Jacksonville, Florida.[6] Caitlin won Miss Teen Jacksonville USA on February 28, 2009, and competed for the title of Miss Teen Florida USA in July 2009

Records

  • Holds NFL record for most consecutive completions in a single game: 22 vs Houston on September 24, 2006 (first 22 attempts). Record later tied by David Carr.

References

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Cary Conklin
Billy Joe Hobert
Washington Huskies Starting Quarterbacks
1990,1992
Succeeded by
Billy Joe Hobert
Damon Huard
Preceded by
Steve Beuerlein
Jacksonville Jaguars Starting Quarterbacks
1995-2003
Succeeded by
Byron Leftwich
Preceded by
Patrick Ramsey
Washington Redskins Starting Quarterbacks
2004-2006
Succeeded by
Jason Campbell







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