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Takeo Spikes
No. 51     San Francisco 49ers
Personal information
Date of birth: December 17, 1976 (1976-12-17) (age 33)
Place of birth: Augusta, Georgia
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) Weight: 242 lb (110 kg)
Career information
College: Auburn
NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 1 / Pick: 13
Debuted in 1998 for the Cincinnati Bengals
Career history
 As player:
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2008
Tackles     712
Sacks     23.5
Interceptions     15
Stats at

Takeo Gerard Spikes (pronounced /təˈkiːoʊ/; born December 17, 1976 in Sandersville, Georgia) is an American football linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals 13th overall in the 1998 NFL Draft. He played college football at Auburn.

A two-time Pro Bowl selection, Spikes has also played for the Buffalo Bills and Philadelphia Eagles.


Early years

In high school at Washington County High School in Georgia he earned All-American honors from Parade and USA Today and was named Georgia's "Mr. Football" by state coaches as a senior. Spikes was also named Georgia Player of the Year as a senior.

College career

Takeo entered Auburn, majoring in liberal arts. In the 1997 campaign, he led Auburn with 136 tackles as Auburn advanced to the SEC Championship. Spikes was college teammates with productive tailback Stephen Davis.

Professional career

Cincinnati Bengals

Spikes entered the 1998 NFL Draft and was drafted in the first round by the Cincinnati Bengals. In his rookie season he started all the preseason games and all the regular season games. He became the first rookie to lead the Bengals in tackles since James Francis led them in 1990. He also led the team by total snaps played on offense and defense, which added up to 997.

In 1999 he was the team captain, playing in all his games as a Right Inside Linebacker and a Right Linebacker. He forced four fumbles and recovered four, leading the team in that as well.

In 2000 he played every game as a Right Linebacker and recorded 128 tackles. He passed the 100 tackle mark for the third straight time and led the team in tackles and fumble recoveries.

2001 Spikes started at RLB for all of the 15 games he played that season. He once again led the team in solo and total tackles in the 2001 campaign. Spikes missed Game 5 because of his father, Jimmie's, death.

2002 was his final season with the Bengals, as he played all 16 games. In his tenure with the Bengals, he played 79 of a possible 80 games, missing one for his father's funeral. He led the team in solo and total tackles once again and scored his second defensive TD by way of fumble recovery.

Buffalo Bills

2003 was the first season Spikes played with the Bills, earning his first Pro Bowl appearance and started all 16 games once more. He recorded 126 tackles, with the addition of a pair of sacks, a pair of interceptions, and a pair of fumble recoveries.

2005 On September 25, Spikes suffered a season-ending tear to his right Achilles' tendon while tackling Michael Vick during the Bills 24-16 loss to the Atlanta Falcons in Week 3.

2006 Trying to recover from his torn Achilles tendon, Spikes played in 12 games while missing 4 games early in the season due to a hamstring injury. During the first series of the first game of the year, Spikes made a blind side sack on Patriots QB Tom Brady, forcing a fumble which was recovered by then-current Bills LB London Fletcher for a touchdown. The sack and forced fumble were Spikes' only of the season as he struggled with injury.

Philadelphia Eagles

Takeo did not want to be part of the Bills youth movement, but rather play for a contender. On March 26, 2007, he was traded as part of a multi-player deal to the Philadelphia Eagles. The deal sent himself and Kelly Holcomb to the Eagles for Darwin Walker and a conditional 2008 draft pick.[1]

After a very effective first season as an Eagle, Spikes season was cut short in week 14 when he suffered a torn rotator cuff injury against the Dallas Cowboys, a game the Eagles won 10-6.

Takeo Spikes was released by the Eagles on March 6, 2008.

San Francisco 49ers

On August 10, 2008, Spikes was signed by the San Francisco 49ers on the same day they released linebacker Brandon Moore.[2] Spikes was assigned No. 51, with Dontarrious Thomas changing from 51 to 56 - the number previously worn by Moore. On February 27, 2009 Takeo was resigned to a 2 year contract. He was injured on November 1, 2009.


According to Spikes, his nickname TKO also stands for "The Knock Out" (with emphasis on "The"). According to an Essence interview conducted with singer Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, Spikes and she have been dating for over three years.[3]

Several of Spikes' jerseys from the early days of his career are preserved in glass at the Dairy Lane restaurant in Sandersville.

He was named after Japan's 66th Prime Minister Takeo Miki. Miki's successor, who was appointed the nation's 67th Prime Minister on December 24, 1976, was also Takeo (Fukuda).

Takeo's younger cousin Brandon Spikes plays football for the University of Florida.[4]


External links

Simple English

Takeo Spikes is a football player. He plays for the San Francisco 49ers and has played for the Buffalo Bills.

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