The NFL has had many very good players in their history. They’ve had players who have been selected to double digit Probowls, players who have won multiple MVP awards and players who have as many Superbowl rings as they have fingers. Once a lifetime however, there is a player that is so transcendent that he is bigger than the game itself. Luckily for all of us, we have had the privilege of having such a superstar on our team, and of course I’m talking about Johnnie Morton.
2012 will be a big year in the history of Chiefdom, as it marks as the 10 year anniversary since Johnnie walked into 1 Arrowhead Way and dawned the red #80. I’d imagine when football operations start back up to commemorate the occasion, Clark Hunt will announce that he is adding Johnnie Morton to the Arrowhead Ring of Honour to join the other greats such as Len Dawson, Willie Lanier and Derrick Thomas.
Johnnie only spent 3 years with the Chiefs, from 2002-2004, however those were the 3 greatest years that the Chiefs have had in their long-well established franchise history. I am hoping not to be overly redundant as there have been many, many posts about Johnnie on AP, but I wanted to tell you a little more about Johnnie, the football player, as well as the man.
Johnnie was multitalented and while players like Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders got a lot of the headlines for being 2 sport superstars, Johnnie has excelled in 3 fields: Football as we all know, as well as acting and Mixed Marshall arts. He received worldwide acclaim for his brief cameo in the Academy Award winning film Jerry McGuire and a very successful MMA career in which he was only defeated 1 time since he started MMA fighting in 2007. To put that into perspective, Chuck Liddell who MMA purists believe to be the greatest pound-for-pound Mixed Marshall artist in the world today, has lost 5 times during that span. Quite amazing.
But enough with his great acting and MMA career, he is known for his prowess on the football field. I don’t have time to look up the stats, but I’m pretty sure Morton holds every Chief WR record out there, from yards, receptions, and TD’s, and with only 3 years of service. Johnnie was was the key to a very powerful Chiefs offense that also featured Trent Green, Priest Holmes and Tony Gonzalez. Johnnie often took on double and triple teams which allowed Tony to break all sorts of tight end records.
I ran into Marc Boerigter who was Johnnie’s team mate during Morton’s brilliant run with the Chiefs, and now working in Calgary. I’ve transcribed the interview below.
Marc – Welcome to Burger King, how may I help you?
Craig – Hello Marc, my name is Craig, I am the lead blogger at a website called Arrowhead Pride, do you have a couple minutes to discuss the life and career of one of the greatest Chiefs of all time, Johnnie Morton?
Marc – No? Who is this? What do you want?
Craig – I’ll get 2 whopper juniors, no tomato, with a medium doctor pepper
Marc – That will be $4.69, please pull up to the first window.
Amazing words, from an amazing athlete.
Lastly, I think we will all remember Johnnie from his amazing touchdown celebration. Chiefs have had numerous celebrations ranging from Jarred Allen’s laso celebration, Tamba Hali’s bird dance, and Matt Cassel’s limp-wristed high five. The best however has to be Johnnie’s Worm:
If you have any Johnnie Morton stories, I'd love to hear them.
So Arrowhead Pride, what is your favourite Johnnie Morton memory?