With 50% of the vote in our poll, Tamba Hali bested out the other Chiefs' rookies to become the AP Rookie of the Year. Coming out of Penn State, Hali recorded 58 tackles, 8 sacks, 1 INT and 5 forced fumbles this season. But enough stats. The real heart to Tamba Hali's ROY season comes from leaving war-torn Liberia when he was 11 years old and growing up in New Jersey. The irony of leaving a dangerous country for New Jersey is just too much for me right now so lets continue.
Hali was the 20th overall pick in the 2006 Draft and was the #2 rated D-End (behind overall #1 pick Mario Williams) before the draft started. For the most part, you can say that the Chiefs have drafted pretty poorly in the last ten years. Yeah we grabbed TG and LJ but we also drafted Ryan Sims and Trezelle Jenkins. Who you ask? Exactly. Tamba Hali was a pick that (I hope at least) nobody is regretting. His energy and talent as a pass rusher were evident from the begninig of the season. Is the Chiefs' defense on its way back to dominance? With Hali as a cornerstone of our much improved defense, I have to say so.
Too many times I and we have seen hyped up Chiefs' rookies fall to the many perils of the toughest professional sport around. I have visions of Snoop Minnis and Sly Mo flying in my head right now. But Tamba Hali broke that trend and satisfied even the most testy Chiefs' fan this season.
Here's to a great 2006-07 season and a great career. Congrats to the only choice for the Kansas City Chiefs AP Rookie of the Year, Tamba Hali.
Tamba Hali signs with the Chiefs [Arrowhead Pride]
Training Camp Day Four News [Arrowhead Pride]
The Nigerian Nightmare would be proud [Arrowhead Pride]