Troy Polamalu: The Tasmanian Devil

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Troy Polamalu revolutionized the safety position, along with Ed Reed. While Polamalu was with the Steelers, Reed was on the rival Baltimore Ravens. John Harbaugh, head coach for the Ravens, went as far as  always having someone with a wig on during practice to show them where Troy would during the game.

Polamalu had nickname upon nickname: The Tasmanian Devil, Quiet Storm, The Samoan Headhunter, and The Flyin’ Hawaiian. Troy is known for being a “heat-seeking missile” on the field, but off the field he is the most polite and kind person. There were only two teammates that were with Polamalu for all of his 12 season dynasty, Brett Keisel and Ike Taylor. Polamalu is remembered for jumping over the line, strip fumbles, and more.

Perhaps one of the most memorable plays was when Polamalu read the eyes of Joe Flacco in the fourth quarter of the 2008 AFC Championship game and picked off the rookie quarterback. Troy then ran the football back for a 40-yard touchdown to win the game. That split-second decision sent the Steelers to Super Bowl XLIII; they won 27-23 against the Arizona Cardinals.

Troy Polamalu intercepted 32 passes, tied for seventh in Steelers’ history. Polamalu intercepted 17 teams throughout his career.  Troy Polamalu had an extraordinary career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and I’m glad that I was able to grow up watching him.

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