View Full Version : Who is your BBA?

10-01-2004, 07:20 AM

CURT SYLVESTER: The baddest of bad

OK, Joey Harrington brought it up, so let's talk about it: Billy Bad-***.

Harrington says the description doesn't fit him, and he suggested it's perhaps the reason Fox's Tony Siragusa gave him the business during the Lions' game against Philadelphia last Sunday.

So, who is Billy Bad-***?

And what is Billy Bad-***?

For one thing, it takes more than talking the talk, so Siragusa himself is eliminated.

A true BBA has a nice combination of athletic ability and toughness, but there's more to it than that. He has to have an attitude and an edge, on and off the field.

If quality of play were the only criterion, then Joe Montana and Walter Payton and Jerry Rice would be the Baddest Billys of all time. But that's not the case.

There's another quality in there somewhere.

Maybe we can't define it exactly, but we know it when we see it.

And it's either there or it isn't.

For better or worse, here are my top 10 BBAs of the past 25 years:

No. 10 -- Green Bay quarterback Brett Favre. He almost didn't make the list for giving up that wussy sack to Michael Strahan a couple of years ago, but I keep seeing him getting up off the turf -- grass and mud stuck in his face mask -- going after Warren Sapp. That's the attitude we want to see in our BBAs.

No. 9 -- Washington running back John Riggins. Hard-nosed back with speed and moves, and a real character. Cinched his berth among BBAs when he got hoopered up at a Washington black-tie affair and addressed Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O'Connor as "Sandy-Baby."

No. 8 -- Pittsburgh linebacker Jack Lambert. Epitomized the rough-and-tumble Steel Curtain that was the heart of four Super Bowl championship teams in the 1970s. Asked before Super Bowl XIV what his astrological sign was, he replied: "Feces."

No. 7 -- Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis. Nothing funny about this guy. The best linebacker of his era, a vicious hitter who can talk trash with the best of them. His gangsta image was almost too real in an episode outside an Atlanta nightclub a few years ago.

No. 6 -- Denver/Oakland linebacker Bill Romanowski. Probably didn't need the performance-enhancers he was rumored to have used. His hits were not only violent, he frequently crossed the line going after quarterbacks, as when he broke Kerry Collins' jaw.

No. 5 -- New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor. On the field his skill in sacking the quarterback changed the way the game was played; off the field he fought an apparently never-ending battle with drugs and booze.

No. 4 -- Lions president Matt Millen. In his playing days, he routinely started fights to put some life into the Raiders' practices. Once decked Pat Sullivan, son of Patriots owner Billy Sullivan, for going after teammate Howie Long after a Raiders playoff victory.

No. 3 -- Lions defensive end Bubba Baker. Perhaps the greatest pass rusher in Lions history, it has been said he was a master of grabbing, grinding and gouging the most tender body parts when he was buried in a pile of bodies.

No. 2 -- Chicago quarterback Jim McMahon. He was a kindred spirit with the Bears' overaggressive offensive linemen in their Super Bowl season, banging helmets and throwing his body around. Off the field, let's just say he knew how to have a good time.

No. 1 -- San Francisco safety Ronnie Lott. Nobody could inflict more pain on an unsuspecting receiver than Lott. He could dish it out, but he could also take it. Once had the tip of a finger surgically removed -- rather than let it heal at its own pace -- so he could get back in the lineup sooner.

10-01-2004, 02:50 PM
Romanowski wasn't BBA, he was more like Billy Jack A$%.

10-01-2004, 04:01 PM
Billy Bad *** on or off the field? They have both on that list. McMahon #2???

10-01-2004, 04:21 PM
This was before my time, but Larry Csonka and Mike Singletary could have made it on that list.

10-01-2004, 11:01 PM
Earl was THE BBA in my opinion. His perfect counterpart was Jack Lambert of the Steelers. I used to love watching Oilers-Steelers games. When those two would collide it was always impressive. Sometimes Earl stopped where he was and sometimes Lambert went back a few yards It was the irresistable force meeting the immovable object. Great days of football those were.

10-03-2004, 08:43 PM
what about night train?

10-05-2004, 08:17 PM
I agree totally about Earl Campbell. What about Rod Woodson or one of those Oilers safeties, like Bubba McDowell?

10-05-2004, 10:58 PM
Decon Jones.
Bobby Lane.
Jim Brown

I WIN!!!