Plaxico Burress: Wikis


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Plaxico Burress

Burress at the Giants Super Bowl champions parade in NYC.
No. --     Free Agent
Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: August 12, 1977 (1977-08-12) (age 32)
Place of birth: Norfolk, Virginia
Height: 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) Weight: 232 lb (105 kg)
Career information
College: Michigan State
NFL Draft: 2000 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8
Debuted in 2000 for the Pittsburgh Steelers
Career history
 As player:
Roster status: Suspended
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2008
Receptions     505
Receiving yards     7,845
Receiving TDs     55
Stats at

Plaxico Jeffrey Burress (pronounced /ˈplɛksɪkoʊ ˈbɜrəs/ PLEKS-i-koh; born August 12, 1977 in Norfolk, Virginia) is an American football wide receiver who is currently a free agent. He has played in the National Football League for the Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants. He is currently serving a two-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to weapons charges and, with time off for good behavior, will likely serve 20 months and be eligible for release in spring 2011.[1]


College career

Burress set a Big Ten Conference single-season record by catching 65 passes in his first season at Michigan State, and also excelled on the special-teams coverage units, using his outstanding leaping ability as a kick blocker. He ranks second in career touchdown catches (20), third in receptions (131), and fourth in receiving yards (2,155) in just two seasons at Michigan State University. He was an All-American second-team selection by and an All-Big Ten Conference first-team pick in 1999. Burress broke his own school season-record that he set in 1998 (65 catches) with 66 receptions for 1,142 yards (17.3 avg) and 12 touchdowns. He established Spartans' single-season-record 12 touchdown receptions, eclipsing the previous record of eight that Burress shared (1998) with Andre Rison (1988) and Bob Carey (1949). He forced two fumbles, recovered one fumble, and registered seven tackles (five solos) on special teams. Burress then set a school record with 255 yards receiving on ten catches against the University of Michigan. He finally closed out his career with a school-record 13 receptions for 185 yards and three touchdowns against the University of Florida in the 2000 Citrus Bowl. He also broke the single-game record of 12 receptions set by tight end Mitch Lyons in 1992. In 1996, he caught 33 passes for 807 yards (24.5 avg.) and 12 touchdowns. Burress was an All–Big Ten Conference first-team selection in 1998 by The Sports Network, and he earned second-team accolades from the league's media. He shared Spartan Outstanding Underclass Back Award honors with tailback Sedrick Irvin and wide receiver Gari Scott. Also, he started All Year at split end and established a school season-record with 65 receptions, topping the previous mark of 60 catches by Courtney Hawkins in 1989. He had more than 100 yards receiving in four games and is ranked third in the conference with an average of 84.4 yards per game and fifth in the conference with an average of 5.4 catches per game. He recorded six solo tackles and forced a fumble on special teams.

Professional career

Pittsburgh Steelers

After being drafted eighth overall in the 2000 NFL Draft, Burress went on to play five years with the Pittsburgh Steelers, amassing 261 receptions for 4,164 yards, 22 touchdowns, and only six fumbles over the span of 71 games. He first broke the 1,000-yard mark in his second season, gaining 1,008 yards on 66 receptions. Burress's best season with the Steelers came in 2002, when he set his career highs for receptions (78) and yards (1,325), to go along with seven touchdowns. Also in 2002, Burress played in his first career playoff game, accumulating six receptions for 100 yards and a touchdown. In three subsequent playoff games with the Steelers, Burress totaled only seven receptions, 123 yards, and one touchdown.

Burress's 1,008-yard season in 2001, combined with Hines Ward's 1,003 receiving yards, gave the Steelers their first pair of 1,000-yard receivers.[2] The two would combine to accomplish the same feat in 2002.[3] On November 10, 2002, Burress took advantage of an extra 15 minutes of play to set a Steelers franchise record with 253 receiving yards in a 34–34 tie against the Atlanta Falcons. He caught nine passes and scored two touchdowns in the game.[2]

New York Giants

On January 23, 2005, after a playoff defeat, Burress announced his intentions to leave the Steelers. On March 17, he signed a six-year, $25 million contract with the New York Giants.[4]

In his first season playing for New York, Burress caught 76 passes for 1,214 yards, helping the team earn an 11–5 record, good enough for first place in the NFC East as well as the NFC's fourth seed. However, they were shutout 23–0 by the Carolina Panthers in the opening round of the 2005–06 NFL playoffs.

In the 2006 season, Burress managed a career high in touchdowns with ten but fell short of the 1,000-yard mark, appearing in only 15 games and struggling with a groin injury for much of the year. The Giants dropped six of their last eight games and fell in the NFC Wild Card playoffs to the NFC East champion Philadelphia Eagles 23–20. Burress had a touchdown catch on the opening drive and finished the game with five receptions for 89 yards and two touchdowns.

In 2007, Burress was the Giants' top receiver with 70 receptions for 1,025 yards, despite not practicing all season because of his ailing ankle. He also set a franchise playoff record in the NFC title game in Green Bay with 11 receptions for 154 yards as the Giants advanced to Super Bowl XLII.

In Super Bowl XLII, Burress caught the game-winning pass that made the score 17–14 in the Giants favor. He gained some measure of "Super Bowl legend" by predicting a Giants win, and by further saying that the Patriots would be beaten by the score 23–17.[5] Also, Burress was suffering from a serious leg injury and had very limited work in pregame practice so he was able to get treatment and play in the Super Bowl. Ironically, Burress' limited work benefited the Giants in the Super Bowl because David Tyree received more repetitions in practice as Burress was recovering, and Tyree went on to make the "Helmet Catch" and a touchdown reception in the Super Bowl.

Before their May mini-camp, Burress and his fellow teammates were invited by former President George W. Bush to the White House on April 30, 2008 to honor their victory in Super Bowl XLII.[6]

Just before the start of the Giants mandatory May mini-camp, Burress had said that he would not participate in the camp because he was upset with his contract.[7] He attended the camp to avoid paying a fine but refused to practice with the team.[8] Although he was slated to receive $3.25 million for 2008, Burress felt underpaid compared to other star receivers.[8] After indicating that he might hold out training camp as well,[7] he joined, but practiced very little, claiming his ankle was injured.[9]

On September 24, 2008, the team announced that Burress would be suspended for the game on October 5 for a violation of team rules.[10] He did not show up for work on a Monday and could not be reached by phone for two days. This is not the first time that Burress has been temporarily suspended by an NFL team—in May 2004, he was suspended by the Pittsburgh Steelers for failing to show up for a Monday team practice. On October 24 he was issued three fines totaling $45,000 for the following reasons:

  1. $20,000 for post game comments regarding officiating—specifically, inappropriate comments on officiating.
  2. $20,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct—specifically, verbal abuse of the head linesman.
  3. $5,000 for throwing the ball in the stands.

Burress signed a five-year, $35 million contract extension prior to the season. However, it is an incentive laced deal, there is $11.5 million in non-guaranteed base salaries in the contract, non-guaranteed roster bonuses of $3.5 million, non-guaranteed escalators of $5 million based on performance and $1.3 million in non-guaranteed workout bonuses among other things. According to various reports, the Giants could cut or trade Burress after the season and get $23 million taken off their books [11]

On November 2, in the second quarter of the Giants first regular-season game against the Dallas Cowboys, Burress caught his 500th career reception. On November 23, 2008 Burress started the game against the Arizona Cardinals in Arizona after being considered questionable with a hamstring injury. The first play of the game he had a 4 yard reception but it was called back on a penalty. Burress left the game and did not return in what would be his final appearance with the Giants.

Burress was released by the Giants on April 3, 2009.[12]

Legal troubles

Domestic disturbances

In August and September 2008, Totowa police responded to two domestic disturbance calls at the Burress household. At both times temporary restraining orders were issued that were later dismissed by state court.[13]

Civil lawsuits

In January 2009, Burress was the defendant in a civil lawsuit brought against him by a Lebanon County, Pennsylvania car dealer, who claimed that Burress was given a leased Chevrolet Avalanche in return for promises to appear at publicity events for the dealership. The dealer claimed that Burress never returned the car and never attended any publicity events; the damaged car was eventually returned after being impounded by the New York Police Department. Burress acknowledged that he was responsible for some of the damage to the car, but asked a jury to determine the amount.[14] On January 15, 2009 the jury returned a verdict awarding only $1,700 to the dealer, who had asked for damages of up to $19,000.[15] According to the Associated Press, Burress has been sued at least nine times since he joined the NFL in 2000.[16]

He has a civil lawsuit pending against him in Broward County, Florida, where a woman claims that his $140,000 Mercedes-Benz collided with the back of her car. The suit, filed on December 8, 2008 claims that Burress was driving without car insurance at the time, as his insurance had expired three days previously and had not been renewed.[17]

Accidental shooting

On Friday, November 28, 2008, Burress suffered an accidental self-inflicted gunshot wound to the right thigh in the New York City nightclub LQ when his Glock pistol, tucked in the waistband of his black jeans, began sliding down his leg; apparently in reaching for the gun he inadvertently depressed the trigger, causing the gun to fire.[18] The injury was not life-threatening and he was released from an area hospital the next afternoon.[19] The following Monday, Burress turned himself in to police to face charges of criminal possession of a handgun.[20] It was later discovered that the NYPD found out about the incident only after seeing it on television and were not called by New York-Presbyterian Hospital as required by law. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg called the hospital actions an "outrage" and stated that they are a "chargeable offense". Bloomberg also urged that Burress be prosecuted to the fullest extent, saying that any punishment short of the minimum 3½ years for unlawful carrying of a handgun would be "a mockery of the law."[21][22] Burress had an expired concealed carry (CCW) license from Florida, but no New York license.

On December 2, 2008, Burress posted bail of $100,000.[23] Later in the day, Burress reported to Giants Stadium as per team policy for injured but active players, and was told he would be suspended without pay[24] for the remaining four games of the 2008 regular season for conduct detrimental to the team. In addition, the Giants placed Burress on their reserve/non-football injury list,[25] meaning he was ineligible to return for the playoffs. Burress was also scheduled to receive $1 million from his signing bonus on December 10, 2008, but the status of that payment is unclear.[26] The NFL Players Association filed a grievance, saying the team violated the collective bargaining agreement and challenging the suspension and fine received by Burress.[27]

On December 23, 2008, a search of Burress' New Jersey home by the Totowa, New Jersey Police, the New York Police Department and investigators from the Manhattan District Attorney turned up a 9 mm handgun, a rifle, ammunition and the clothing believed to be worn by Burress on the night of his accidental shooting.[28] On June 12, 2009 Burress' attorney, Benjamin Brafman announced that he has been unable to reach a sentencing agreement.[29]

Burress asked a Manhattan grand jury for sympathy during two hours of testimony on July 29, 2009.[30] On Monday, August 3, 2009, prosecutors announced that Burress had been indicted[31] by the grand jury on two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, and a single count of reckless endangerment in the second degree, both felonies.[32][33] On August 20, 2009, Burress accepted a plea deal that would put him in prison for two years with an additional two years of supervised release.[31] His sentencing was held on September 22, 2009. Burress hired a prison consultant to advise him on what to expect while in prison.[34]

Driving violations

Burress was pulled over by Florida police on March 1, 2009 and ticketed for four separate moving violations: speeding, improper display of tags, improper lane change and for improper window tinting. [35] The tickets were subsequently thrown out by a Fort Lauderdale magistrate, on a technicality. [36]


Plaxico Burress, named after his uncle, was born to Vicki Burress (now deceased) in Norfolk, Virginia, United States. He has two brothers, Ricardo and Carlos. Burress is married to Tiffany Glenn and has one son, Elijah[37] and a daughter due to be born November 26, 2009. Burress graduated from Green Run High School in Virginia Beach, Virginia in 1996, and spent a post-graduate year at Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Virginia. He lives in Totowa, New Jersey.[38] He co-wrote the book Giant: The Road to the Super Bowl (ISBN 978-0-06-169574-2) about his Super Bowl experience.


  1. ^ Matthews, Karen (2009-09-22). "Ex-NY Giant Burress gets 2 years in gun case". Associated Press.;_ylt=AhjPUmHzd.0l6MMfXzbeY7ZI2ocA. Retrieved 2009-09-22.  
  2. ^ a b Pedulla, Tom (2002-11-12). "Burress reaches for potential". USA Today. Retrieved 2008-09-24.  
  3. ^ "Hines Ward: Career Stats". Retrieved 2008-09-24.  
  4. ^ Eisen, Michael (2005-03-18). "Giants Sign WR Plaxico Burress". Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  5. ^ Ashdown, John (2008-02-04). "New England Patriots 14–17 New York Giants". The Guardian.,,2252075,00.html. Retrieved 2008-02-27.  
  6. ^ Office of the Press Secretary (April 30, 2008). "President Bush Welcomes Super Bowl XLII Champion New York Giants to White House". The White House. Retrieved 2008-04-30.  
  7. ^ a b Garafolo, Mike (2008-06-11). "Burress sitting out in contract dispute". The Star-Ledger. Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  8. ^ a b Schwartz, Paul (2008-06-11). "Plaxico says he Won't Practice; Upset Over Contract, Giants Receiver Claims it's a 'Business Decision'". New York Post. Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  9. ^ "Burress says ankle injury, not contract, keeping him from practice". (Associated Press). 2008-07-29. Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ Schwartz, Paul. (December 2, 2008).BURRESS DEAL HAS LOOPHOLES New York Post. Retrieved May 15, 2009.
  12. ^ "Giants release WR Plaxico Burress". Retrieved 2009-04-03.  
  13. ^ "Exclusive: Burress involved in domestic disputes". The Record (Bergen County),. 2008-09-24. Retrieved 2008-11-16.  
  14. ^ Damaged to Leased Truck Lands Burress In Court, January 13, 2009
  15. ^ Jury Sides With Burress on Damaged Car, January 15, 2009
  16. ^ Burress has string of debtor lawsuits
  17. ^ Plaxico Burress Is Sued Over Car Crash NY Times, December 22, 2008
  18. ^ Kopel, David. "Free Plaxico Burress". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2009-02-15.  
  19. ^ Maske, Mark (November 30, 2008). "Burress Accidentally Shoots Himself in Leg". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  20. ^ "Burress Will Surrender to Authorities on Monday". The New York Times. November 30, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-30.  
  21. ^ Italiano, Laura (2008-12-01). "Bloomberg slams Burress for shooting cover-up". The New York Post. Retrieved 2008-12-02.  
  22. ^ Macur, Juliet (December 1, 2008). "Plaxico Burress Surrenders to Police". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-12-01.  
  23. ^ "Plaxico Burress posts bail as New York Giants weigh options - Los Angeles Times".,0,3249369.story. Retrieved 2008-12-04.  
  24. ^ Giants Say Burress’s Season Is Over. New York Times, 2008-12-02.
  25. ^ Giants suspend Burress four games in wake of weapons charges. ESPN, 2008-12-02.
  26. ^ Non-football injury list protects Giants. New York Newsday, 2008-12-03.
  27. ^ "NFLPA files grievance challenging Burress' suspension, fine." ESPN. December 10, 2008.
  28. ^ Gun Seized in Search of NFL Player's Home, December 24, 2008
  29. ^ Plaxico Burress case goes long: Failure to reach plea deal delays ex-Giant receiver's trial. Daily News (New York), 2009-06-12.
  30. ^ Former Giants Star Defends Himself to Grand Jury in Weapons Case The New York Times, July 29, 2009.
  31. ^ a b Zand, Joel (2009-08-20). "Ex-Giant Plaxico Burress Pleads Guilty in N.Y.C. Gun Case". FindLaw. Retrieved 2009-09-22.  
  32. ^ Eligon, John; Joseph Berger. "Burress Is Indicted on Weapons Charges". City Room (The New York Times).  
  33. ^ Honan, Edith; Daniel Trotta (2009–08–03). "Plaxico Burress indicted on weapons charges". Reuters.  
  34. ^ "Plaxico's Jailhouse 'Trainer' - Hires expert to prep". New York Post. 2009-08-22. Retrieved 2009-08-23.  
  35. ^ Burress Ticketed 4 Times in One Day TMZ, March 12, 2009
  36. ^ Hockensmith, Dustin (June 02, 2009, 7:12PM). "Plaxico Burress traffic tickets thrown out by court". The Patriot News ( Retrieved 03 December 2009.  
  37. ^ "Plaxico Burress". New York Giants.  
  38. ^ Hollander, Dave (October 25, 2007). "Burress Ready to Discover Old World". Retrieved 2008-12-05.  

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