Safety, Indianapolis Colts
4th season in pro football & with Colts
Height: 5’8” Weight: 206
Attracted by his speed and athleticism, the Colts selected Sanders in the second round of the 2004 NFL draft. While he was limited to six games as a rookie due to a holdout and injuries, he showed off a physical style of play that belied his size and also performed well in coverage. Sanders excelled in 2005, achieving consensus first-team All-NFL honors as well as being selected to the Pro Bowl. However, a knee injury limited him to four games in 2006.
2007 Season Summary
Appeared in 15 of 16 games
[Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20]
Sacks – 3.5
Most sacks, game – 2.5 at Tennessee 9/16
Interceptions – 2
Most interceptions, game – 1 at Jacksonville 10/22, vs. Houston 12/23
Int. return yards – 32
Most int. return yards, game – 29 (on 1 int.) vs. Houston 12/23
Int. TDs – 0
Fumble recoveries – 1
Forced fumbles – 0
Tackles – 71
Assists – 25
Postseason: 1 G (AFC Divisional playoff vs. San Diego)
Sacks – 0
Interceptions – 0
Awards & Honors:
NFL Defensive Player of the Year: AP
1st team All-NFL: AP, PFWA, Sporting News
Colts went 13-3 to finish first in the AFC South while leading the NFL in fewest points allowed (262) and the AFC in fewest passing yards allowed (2764). Lost AFC Divisional playoff to San Diego Chargers (28-24).
The outstanding season in 2007 was followed by four injury-plagued years as Sanders’ hard-hitting style of play began to take a toll. He appeared in only six games in 2008 and three over the next two seasons before being released. Sanders caught on with San Diego for 2011 but appeared in two games before being shelved by a knee injury. Over the course of eight seasons, Sanders intercepted 6 passes and was credited with 226 tackles and 78 assists. However, he played in just 50 games, only twice appearing in more than six in a season –yet achieving consensus first-team All-NFL and Pro Bowl honors in those two seasons.
MVP Profiles feature players who were named MVP or Player of the Year in the NFL, AAFC (1946-49), AFL (1960-69), WFL (1974), or USFL (1983-85) by a recognized organization (Associated Press, Pro Football Writers Association, Newspaper Enterprise Association, United Press International, The Sporting News, Maxwell Club – Bert Bell Award, or the league itself). Also includes Associated Press NFL Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year.