Sometimes snubs happen in life, and the NFL is no different. With the announcement of NFL Pro Bowl rosters, Indianapolis Colts’ rookie linebacker Darius Leonard was left off. Now he wants to to take his anger out on the New York Giants. But just how is he going to do that?
“He told me he wanted 40 tackles, but I told him it’s humanly impossible,” Colts tight end Eric Ebron told Mike Wells of ESPN. “He doesn’t care. … Things like [the Pro Bowl] should really go by statistics rather than names. He’s one of the all-time great rookie linebackers statistically in a long time.”
Leonard, the Colts’ second-round draft pick, leads the NFL with 146 total tackles. Additionally Leonard also has seven sacks, six pass defenses, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. So while he has a strong case as Defensive Rookie of the Year, being left off the Pro Bowl squad really took a toll on him.
“I was heartbroken at first because I thought I did enough, but it is what it is,” Leonard told reporters.
Then he was asked to place his disappointment on a scale of 1-10, to which he replied “twenty.” The NFL record for solo tackles in a game is 25, held by Hall of Famer Brian Urlacher. However, Leonard disagrees with his teammate that reaching 40 isn’t possible.
“Impossible? There is nothing impossible,” Leonard added. “If you play a lot of snaps you’ve just got to get on every play possible.”
That last statement is especially true for Leonard, who leads all Colts defenders with 90.3 defensive snaps played. Now it’s time to see how many tackles he can rack up this weekend. We’re not going to deter him from his mission, of course. But if he even approaches Urlacher’s record, it will be a special day.
Just not for the Giants.