The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will induct two new members into the Ring of Honor this year, for the first time since the team instated the ring in 2009. Both Mike Alstott and Doug Williams will be inducted at separate games this year, the Bucs announced today.
Williams will go into the Ring of Honor on December 6 against the Atlanta Falcons, while Alstott will be inducted October 4 against the Carolina Panthers.
Alstott is one of the most popular players to ever put on a Bucs uniform. After being selected in the second round of the 1996 NFL draft, he proceeded to play for Tampa Bay for 12 seasons, making it to six Pro Bowls and being elected first-team All-Pro three times.
While Alstott was a fullback, most will remember for his rumbling runs and unstoppable short-yardage work, putting up 5,088 yards and 58 touchdowns on the ground over his career. My personal favorite statistic: he was the team's leading receiver as a rookie.
Williams was the Bucs' original franchise quarterback, the 17th overall draft pick of the 1978 NFL draft and the starter for five years, before a contract dispute with notoriously cheap owner Hugh Culverhouse led to Williams leaving for the USFL. Ironically, Williams' most famous moment came with Washington in 1988, when he threw five touchdowns in one quarter of football in Super Bowl XXII.
Williams is arguably the most successful quarterback in Bucs history, having started 67 games over a five-year period. Williams helped lead the Bucs to playoff berths in 1979, 1981 and 1982, with the team coming awfully close to a Super Bowl berth in 1979. During that time, Williams was the only black starting quarterback in the NFL.
Williams' traditional statistics don't look overly impressive, having completed fewer than 50% of his passes for the Bucs and throwing 73 touchdowns to 73 interceptions, but a large part of that was the team's largely inept supporting cast on offense. And while those numbers look bad from here, he was actually an above-average quarterback in most regards, throwing far fewer interceptions and taking far fewer sacks than the league average, despite largely inferior blocking -- a major reason for his low completion percentage was the amount of passes he had to throw away to avoid sacks.
Williams later returned to Tampa as a personnel executive, working for Tampa Bay from 2004 through 2010 before being ousted as coordinator of pro scouting. He's also worked as the general manager of the Virginia Destroyers, and is currently a personnel executive with Washington. In addition, he's coached at several levels, spending nine years as Grambling's head coach.
The Bucs opened the Ring of Honor in 2009, inducting Lee Roy Selmon, John McKay, Jimmie Giles, Paul Gruber, Warren Sappand Derrick Brooks over the past years.