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GOAT Lockdown Corner, Prime Time Deion Sanders Turns 51

Deion Sanders turns 51 years old today.

Deion Sanders turns 51 years old today. 

Scott F on Twitter

Happy 51st bday Deion Sanders! Deion is in the NFL Hall of Fame as one of the greatest corners ever. He won DPOY in 1994 when he scored 3 TD. Also had 6 punt & 3 KO return TD in career.

“Neon Deion” retired from the NFL 13 years ago and there hasn’t been another player who so emphatically reigns as the GOAT at his position and the GOAT of self-promotion. Others have tried to copy his blueprint of showmanship and skill in an attempt to mirror his total dominance, but they fell a championship short or lacked his marketability, public appeal, clutch gene and multiplicity of skills. 

The Shadow League on Twitter

Happy 51st birthday to @DeionSanders! Let’s remember this legendary moment from the 1989 Draft. “I was kind of scared I thought Detroit was gonna take me. I would have asked for so much money they would have had to put me on layaway.” https://t.co/N9oey8Itmm


Since retiring from the NFL, Prime Time has worked as an analyst for CBS Sports and the NFL Network. Hes also the offensive coordinator at Trinity Christian-Cedar Hill high school where his sons go to school. 


Gerry Hamilton on Twitter

Team Highlight head coach Deion Sanders getting his DB’s ready for the 2018 Under Armour @AllAmericaGame on ESPN2 at 6pm ET. @DemetricDWarren https://t.co/v6BIkLBAHr

His induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011 was an inevitable accolade in an unprecedented career of one of the greatest athletes and entertainers that the professional sports landscape has ever seen. Prime Time starred for the Atlanta Falcons, Dallas Cowboys, San Francisco 49ers and finished his career with the Baltimore Ravens

Deion Sanders Hall of Fame Speech

I do not own the rights. All rights are reserved for ESPN


Cultural Icon

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Prime Time was the epitome of the player that came to personify the ’90s, but his two Super Bowl Championships made his hustle legit because he backed up every self-promoting word he spoke and his team was rewarded for his greatness. 


His flashy style of dress, wet curl and over-the-top gold chains and rings reflected the attire you would see on street hustlers and rappers. His ability to match his huge personality with big-time plays in crucial moments forced people to respect his gangster, even if his constant lip service rubbed some folks the wrong way and scared the white media. 

He put dudes up on the branding game, way before social media made narcissism and self-promotion fashionable and easy. Prime Time was about his paper and making history.

Deion Sanders – Must Be The Money

Deion Sanders most famous with the Dallas Cowboys Made this hit single in the 80s however this song never charted. But was a must have for any serious DeeJay. @feamuvi @yolovybez

Sanders is also credited with being the player who made the tomahawk chop a part of Braves baseball lore. The fans adopted the Seminoles war chant that Sanders was familiar with as a star for Florida State, where he created the image of Prime Time. They use it to this day. 

Shutdown Corner



Possessing the speed of a cheetah, Sanders is considered the elite shutdown corner in the history of the NFL. Look no further than his battles with Jerry Rice as proof of Deions legendary greatness as a defensive back. Hes probably the only player who could ever hang with Rice over the course of a game. 


Sanders also elevated the pay grade for shutdown corners, a position that has become one the most important and lucrative for defenses looking to survive in a pass-happy NFL. 

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Sanders intercepted 53 passes and returned them for 1,331 yards (a 25.1 yards per return average), recovered four fumbles, returned 155 kickoffs for 3,523 yards, gained 2,199 yards on 212 punt returns, and caught 60 passes for 784 yards.  The Swiss-Army knife amassed 7,838 all-purpose yards and scored 22 touchdowns: with nine interception returns, six punt returns, three kickoff returns, three receiving, and one fumble recovery. 

His 19 defensive and return touchdowns was an NFL record (now held by Devin Hester with 20 return touchdowns). He also made eight Pro Bowls. 

Two-sport athlete


After dominating at Florida State, Deions pro football career began in 1989, the same year he also signed on to play baseball with the New York Yankees Triple -A team in Columbus, Ohio. 

He was the fifth overall pick of the Atlanta Falcons in the 1989 NFL Draft and he immediately excelled as a multi-dimensional threat, locking dudes down on defense and adding an explosive offensive element, using his unrivaled speed and athleticism as a lethal punt returner and kick returner. 

He was one of the few players who could affect the game with equal impact on both sides of the ball. 

If his football career isnt enough to support his iconic stature, Deion enjoyed a nine-year, part-time MLB career appearing in 641 games for four teams. When he wasnt dazzling the crowd on the gridiron, he was a solid MLB outfielder who played for the New York Yankees, the Atlanta Braves, the Cincinnati Reds and the San Francisco Giants.


He also participated in the 1992 World Series with the Braves.


Deion Sanders – Atlanta Braves Highlights (pt. 1)

This video is a tribute to one of my favorite Baseball & Football players of all time DEION SANDERS!!!!!!! I DON’T OWN THE COPYRIGHTS TO THIS VIDEO!!!!!!

In four World Series games, Deion played the best baseball of his life, batting .533 with four runs, eight hits, two doubles and an RBI for the Atlanta Braves while enduring a broken foot. 

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Atlanta lost the series to the Toronto Blue Jays, but the legend of Prime Time was cemented in MLB. He also had one of his finest seasons on the diamond that year, batting .304, stealing 26 bases and leading the NL in Triples with 14 in just 97 games. 

In 1997, Sanders finished 2nd in the NL with 56 stolen bases in 115 games while with the Reds before leaving baseball for three years to concentrate on football. 

Deion is the only athlete ever to hit a home run and get a touchdown in the same seven-day period. He is also the only athlete to ever compete in the World Series and a Super Bowl.



Deion Sanders Interview

As always, your comments and ratings are greatly appreciated. Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing.

With the exception of Bo Jackson, who was a better baseball player,  Deion is the greatest two-sport pro to ever exist. Regardless of what athletes following in his footsteps, he will always be in a class by himself. 


Happy Birthday to a living legend, cultural phenomenon and one of the greatest athletes we’ll ever have a chance to see. 

JR Gamble joined The Shadow League in 2012. The Deputy Editor and Senior Writer is in his 23rd year of covering sports and culture professionally. He has covered a wide variety of major sports and entertainment topics across different mediums, including radio, magazines and national TV.

His passion is baseball, the culturing of baseball and preserving and documenting the historically-impactful accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans in baseball.