Rodney Peete is a former American football quarterback who played in the National Football League for 16 years. He played college football for the USC Trojans football team, he is now in broadcasting. Peete was born in Arizona, he attended Sahuaro High School in Tucson, as a freshman and junior, went to Shawnee Mission South High School in Overland Park, for his senior year. He was a three-year letterman in football and baseball. In football, he was named the Arizona High School Player of the Year as a junior. Peete was drafted in the 30th round by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 1984 Major League Baseball draft, he elected to attend college at the University of Southern California. He is the son of Willie Peete, former running backs coach of the Kansas City Chiefs and the Chicago Bears, his brother is NFL coach Skip Peete. Peete was the first player from USC to win the Johnny Unitas Award as the nation's best senior quarterback. In that senior year, he finished second to Barry Sanders in the voting for the Heisman Trophy.
His USC teams would win both head-to-head matchups in the UCLA–USC rivalry against Troy Aikman's UCLA teams. The 1988 UCLA-USC game was notable in that Peete was stricken with measles the week before the game and had been hospitalized, he led USC to the 1989 Rose Bowl games. Peete was a star third baseman on USC's baseball team, he was named to the all-Pac-10 team. He was drafted three different times while at USC. In the 1988 MLB draft by the Oakland Athletics in the 14th round, the 1989 MLB draft by the Athletics again in the 13th round and the 1990 MLB draft by the Detroit Tigers in the 28th round. Peete did not achieve stardom in his professional career in the NFL, but played well enough to sustain his place in the league for 16 seasons as a backup. Selected by the Detroit Lions as the 141st pick in the 6th round of the 1989 NFL Draft, Peete was scheduled to start the season opener but sprained his knee in an exhibition game against the Los Angeles Rams, missing the first few games of the season.
He would have been the first rookie quarterback to start for the Lions since 1968, when Greg Landry started. His career was marked by injury. In his first five NFL seasons with the Lions, he would split time with Bob Gagliano, Erik Kramer, former Heisman Trophy winner Andre Ware. After spending time with the Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins, Philadelphia Eagles, Oakland Raiders, Peete's career appeared to be over until he became the starter for the Carolina Panthers in 2002, where he led the Panthers to start the year 3–0 and to a 7–9 record, an improvement over 1–15 the year before. After a weak showing in the first half of 2003 season opening game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, head coach John Fox replaced him in the third quarter with Jake Delhomme, who led the Panthers to a comeback victory. Delhomme subsequently replaced Peete as the Panthers' starting quarterback, leading the team to an 11–5 record that led to Super Bowl XXXVIII against the New England Patriots; the Panthers released Peete to free agency in February 2005 for salary cap reasons, but he chose to retire instead of re-signing with a team for another season.
Peete finished his career with the most NFL career passing yards among QBs from USC, a record, eclipsed by Carson Palmer. After his retirement from the NFL, Peete became one of the hosts of the Fox Sports Networks sports talk show The Best Damn Sports Show Period alongside John Salley, Chris Rose and Rob Dibble. In 2015, the Oprah Winfrey Network announced that they were making a docuseries on Peete and his family. Rodney Peete and his wife Holly Robinson Peete star in Lipozene commercials on television. In 2019, Rodney Peete co-hosted the Hallmark Kitten Bowl. Peete has been married to actress Holly Robinson Peete since 1995, they have four children: twins, daughter Ryan Elizabeth Peete and son Rodney Peete, Jr. son Robinson James Peete, son Roman Peete. One of their twins, Rodney Jr. was diagnosed with autism at age three. He tells of his story of Jr. in the June 2010 issues of Men's Health. In November 2013, Peete was named as a 2014 recipient of the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award, given annually to six former college athletes 25 years after the end of their college athletics careers.
Peete is the son-in-law of late actor Matt Robinson, cousin of the late professional golfer Calvin Peete. Racial issues faced by black quarterbacks
American football, referred to as football in the United States and Canada and known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field with goalposts at each end. The offense, the team controlling the oval-shaped football, attempts to advance down the field by running with or passing the ball, while the defense, the team without control of the ball, aims to stop the offense's advance and aims to take control of the ball for themselves; the offense must advance at least ten yards in four downs, or plays, otherwise they turn over the football to the defense. Points are scored by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone for a touchdown or kicking the ball through the opponent's goalposts for a field goal; the team with the most points at the end of a game wins. American football evolved in the United States, originating from the sports of association football and rugby football; the first match of American football was played on November 6, 1869, between two college teams and Princeton, under rules based on the association football rules of the time.
During the latter half of the 1870s, colleges playing association football switched to the Rugby Union code, which allowed carrying the ball. A set of rule changes drawn up from 1880 onward by Walter Camp, the "Father of American Football", established the snap, the line of scrimmage, eleven-player teams, the concept of downs; the sport is related to Canadian football, which evolved parallel and contemporary to the American game, most of the features that distinguish American football from rugby and soccer are present in Canadian football. American football as a whole is the most popular sport in the United States; the most popular forms of the game are professional and college football, with the other major levels being high school and youth football. As of 2012, nearly 1.1 million high school athletes and 70,000 college athletes play the sport in the United States annually all of them men, with a few exceptions. The National Football League, the most popular American football league, has the highest average attendance of any professional sports league in the world.
In the United States, American Football is called "football". The terms "gridiron" or "American football" are favored in English-speaking countries where other codes of football are popular, such as the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia. American football evolved from the sports of rugby football. Rugby football, like American football, is a sport where two competing teams vie for control of a ball, which can be kicked through a set of goalposts or run into the opponent's goal area to score points. What is considered to be the first American football game was played on November 6, 1869, between Rutgers and Princeton, two college teams; the game was played between two teams of 25 players each and used a round ball that could not be picked up or carried. It could, however, be kicked or batted with the feet, head or sides, with the ultimate goal being to advance it into the opponent's goal. Rutgers won the game 6 goals to 4. Collegiate play continued for several years in which matches were played using the rules of the host school.
Representatives of Yale, Columbia and Rutgers met on October 19, 1873 to create a standard set of rules for all schools to adhere to. Teams were set at 20 players each, fields of 400 by 250 feet were specified. Harvard abstained from the conference, as they favored a rugby-style game that allowed running with the ball. After playing McGill University using both Canadian and American rules, the Harvard players preferred the Canadian style having only 11 men on the field, running the ball without having to be chased by an opponent, the forward pass and using an oblong instead of a round ball. An 1875 Harvard–Yale game played under rugby-style rules was observed by two impressed Princeton athletes; these players introduced the sport to Princeton, a feat the Professional Football Researchers Association compared to "selling refrigerators to Eskimos." Princeton, Harvard and Columbia agreed to intercollegiate play using a form of rugby union rules with a modified scoring system. These schools formed the Intercollegiate Football Association, although Yale did not join until 1879.
Yale player Walter Camp, now regarded as the "Father of American Football", secured rule changes in 1880 that reduced the size of each team from 15 to 11 players and instituted the snap to replace the chaotic and inconsistent scrum. The introduction of the snap resulted in unexpected consequences. Prior to the snap, the strategy had been to punt. However, a group of Princeton players realized that, as the snap was uncontested, they now could hold the ball indefinitely to prevent their opponent from scoring. In 1881, both teams in a game between Yale-Princeton used this strategy to maintain their undefeated records; each team held the ball. This "block game" proved unpopular with the spectators and fans of both teams. A rule change was necessary to prevent this strategy from taking hold, a reversion to the scrum was considered. However, Camp proposed a rule in 1882 that limited each team to three downs, or tackles, to adva
Cade Brem McNown is a former American football player, a quarterback in the National Football League for four seasons. He played college football for the UCLA Bruins, earning consensus All-American honors as a senior in 1998; the Chicago Bears selected him in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft, he played professionally for the Bears, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers of the NFL. McNown was born in Oregon, he went to high school at San Benito High School in Hollister, before transferring as a senior to West Linn High School in West Linn, where he played quarterback and free safety. He led his high school to the 1994 Oregon Class 4A semifinals, becoming wildly touted by newspapers as a college prospect, he was active on the school track team, where he set a school pole vault record. McNown signed with UCLA after high school, his selection of UCLA was influenced by future NFL quarterback Brock Huard signing with Washington. Huard, along with McNown, were the top high school quarterback prospects in the western United States in 1994.
McNown attended the University of California, Los Angeles, played for the Bruins from 1995 to 1998. He became the starting quarterback as a true freshman, four games into the season, ranking first among all freshmen quarterbacks in many statistics. In 1995, UCLA played in the Aloha Bowl. McNown was less successful as a sophomore in 1996, when UCLA would go 5–6 and he would be ranked 9th in the Pac-10 in pass efficiency, but the season ended on a high note as UCLA overcame a 17-point fourth quarter deficit to beat rival USC in overtime, 48–41. As a junior in 1997, McNown announced the team's goal to score an average of 30 points per game, they ended up averaging 39.75 points per game. After an 0–2 start, UCLA would win its remaining 10 games, including the 1998 Cotton Bowl Classic over Texas A&M, to finish Pac-10 co-champion and ranked No. 5 in the nation. McNown was named Most Outstanding Offensive Player for that year's Cotton Bowl Classic, he was a finalist for the Davey O'Brien Award, was named an All-American by the Associated Press, The Sporting News, made the All-Pac-10 team behind Washington State's Ryan Leaf, finished eighth in the Heisman balloting.
He led the nation in passing efficiency with a 168.6 rating. His play broke many UCLA records, most of, set by Tom Ramsey. In his senior season in 1998, McNown led UCLA to a 10–2 record, including a Rose Bowl appearance as the sole Pac-10 champion. With McNown at the helm, the Bruins' explosive offense carried them on a school-record 20-game winning streak from the previous year, as they won their first 10 games in 1998, before losing to Miami Hurricanes in their regular season finale in a loss that broke the 20-game winning streak and knocked UCLA out of the BCS Championship Game vs. Tennessee; the disappointed Bruins lost to Ron Dayne-led Wisconsin in the 1999 Rose Bowl, 38–31. McNown set numerous school records in passing and offense, became the Pac-10's all-time career leader in total offense, won a collection of post-season honors, including Pac-10 co-Offensive Player of the Year, the Pop Warner Memorial Trophy for best senior player on the West Coast, consensus first-team All-American honors, the Johnny Unitas Award as the top senior quarterback in college football.
McNown finished third in balloting for the Heisman Trophy. In the 1999 Senior Bowl, McNown earned MVP honors as he threw two touchdowns in helping to lead the South team to victory. For his career, McNown still holds many of total-offense records. McNown holds the distinction of being the only UCLA quarterback to go 4-0 against cross-town rival USC. On October 9, 2009, McNown was inducted into the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame. McNown was inducted into the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame on December 30, 2017. Source: Following the scouting combine, some scouts questioned the strength of his throwing arm. McNown, along with Akili Smith, Daunte Culpepper, Donovan McNabb, appeared on the cover of ESPN The Magazine in the issue highlighting the draft, he was selected by the Chicago Bears with the twelfth overall pick in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft, following a draft pick trade with the Washington Redskins. He was the highest-drafted Bears quarterback since Jim McMahon. In the months preceding draft day, the Bears had declared that Erik Kramer would be the starting quarterback, but would waive him prior to signing McNown, who they named as the upcoming season's starter.
He was a contract holdout most of training camp agreeing to a $22 million contract. Head coach Dick Jauron announced that Shane Matthews would be the starter, but that McNown would play at least one series every game to gain experience. McNown would start his first game for the Bears on October 10 following a hamstring injury to Matthews the previous week. During the game on December 26, following a poor performance against the Rams, McNown chose to sit out the second half of the game, he would be replaced as starter by Jim Miller, but would again be named the starter following Miller's suspension. McNown had a spectacular game against Detroit on Dec 19, setting franchise rookie records with 27 completions, 301 yards, 4 touchdowns, he was named the Bears' 2000 starter over Matthews, but his performance grew noticeably worse through the season. He suffered a shoulder injury during the seventh game of the season, was replaced by Miller, who would himse
Ronald Eugene "Ron" Rivera known as "Riverboat Ron" is an American football coach and former player, the head coach of the Carolina Panthers of the National Football League. He has been the defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears and San Diego Chargers. Rivera played college football at the University of California in Berkeley, was recognized as an All-American linebacker, he was selected in the second round of the 1984 NFL draft by the Chicago Bears, was a backup on the 1985 team which won Super Bowl XX. As a coach, Rivera was the defensive coordinator for Bears in the 2006, who were NFC champions and competed in Super Bowl XLI. In 2011, he was named head coach of the Panthers. Rivera was recognized as the NFL Coach of the Year by the Associated Press in 2013 and in 2015. Since taking over the Panthers, he has led the team to three straight divisional titles, an appearance in Super Bowl 50. Rivera was born on January 1962, in Fort Ord, California, his father, Eugenio Rivera, was a Puerto Rican commissioned officer in the U.
S. Army stationed in California. There he met his future wife, Dolores. Due to his father's military service, the family moved and Rivera was educated in military bases in Germany, Washington, D. C. and Maryland. The family settled in central California where he attended Seaside High School and began playing football. Rivera was granted a football scholarship to California, where he was a consensus All-American linebacker, leading the Golden Bears in tackles for his last three years as a player, he once held Cal's all-time sack and career tackles records, still holds the record for most tackles for loss in a season, set in 1983. Rivera was the MVP of the 1984 East-West Shrine Game. In the 1984 NFL draft, Rivera was selected in the second round by the Chicago Bears. In 1985, he played in Super Bowl XX, where the Bears beat the New England Patriots 46–10. Rivera was the first Mexican/Puerto Rican to play on a Super Bowl championship team, he became a starter in 1988. Rivera played for the Bears for a total of nine seasons.
In 1993, Rivera went to work for WGN-TV and SportsChannel Chicago as a TV analyst covering the Bears and college football. In 1996, he became a defense quality control coach for the Bears. In 1999, Rivera was named linebackers coach for the Philadelphia Eagles. During his tenure, the Eagles advanced to the NFC championship for three consecutive seasons, he is credited with developing linebacker Jeremiah Trotter into a two-time Pro Bowl performer. On January 23, 2004, Rivera was named defensive coordinator of the Bears. In 2005, the Bears defense was rated second-best in the NFL; the Bears qualified for the NFC playoffs, losing in the second round to the Carolina Panthers, 29–21. The 2005 performance of the Chicago Bears earned him consideration for Head Coach assignments from several NFL teams. In 2006, the Bears' defensive efforts failed to match the success of their 2005 season; the team was still a notable presence in league, finishing with the league's third ranked and conference's top-ranked points allowed category.
The defense's success earned Rivera recognition among franchises looking for new head coaches. The Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers interviewed him in January 2007, he was a candidate for the vacant Dallas Cowboys head coaching position, a job that went to San Diego Chargers defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. Rivera was named as a potential candidate to replace the fired Marty Schottenheimer in San Diego, but the job was filled by Norv Turner, the brother of fellow offensive coordinator, Ron Turner, Rivera's offensive counterpart in Chicago. After the announcement, ESPN reported; this came after several other teams interviewed him, the negotiations between his representatives and the Bears were making little progress. On February 19, 2007, it was announced that Ron Rivera's contract with the Bears would not be renewed; the San Diego Chargers hired Rivera as team's inside linebackers coach. On October 28, 2008, Rivera was promoted to defensive coordinator with the Chargers after the team released former defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell.
Rivera had used the 4–3 defense for most of his coaching career, but adopted a 3–4 scheme with the Chargers. On January 11, 2011, Rivera was named the fourth head coach of the Carolina Panthers, he is the fifth Latino to be an NFL head coach, following former New Orleans Saints coach Tom Fears, former Oakland Raiders and Seattle Seahawks coach Tom Flores, former New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts coach Jim E. Mora, former Atlanta Falcons coach Jim L. Mora. During his first year as head coach, the Panthers finished third in the division. In 2012, the Panthers finished finished second in the division. Following the 2012 season, Rivera was expected to be fired. Over the first 34 games of his coaching career, Rivera was known for exceptionally conservative decision-making that led to a 2–14 record in games decided by less than a touchdown. Against the Buffalo Bills in Week 2, Rivera decided to kick a field goal while up 3 points and facing a fourth and one deep inside the Bills territory late in the fourth quarter.
The Bills proceeded to drive for a touchdown on their next drive, scoring on a touchdown pass with less than 20 seconds remaining in the game. With Carolina opening the 2013 season 0–2, reports circled that the front office was performing background checks on new potential head coach candidates. Rivera changed his coaching philosophy and became a more aggressive coach. Facing a 4th and 1 from the two-yard line in the first quarter against the 0–2 New York Giants in Week 3, Rivera went for the touchdown
John Albert Elway Jr. is a former American football quarterback, general manager and president of football operations of the Denver Broncos of the National Football League. Elway played college football at Stanford and his entire 16-year professional career with the Denver Broncos. At the time of his retirement in early 1999, Elway had recorded the most victories by a starting quarterback and statistically was the second most prolific passer in NFL history, he was a prolific rusher of the ball, being one of only two players to score a rushing touchdown in four different Super Bowls and the only quarterback to do so. Elway set several career records for passing attempts and completions while at Stanford and received All-American honors, he was the first selection in the 1983 NFL Draft, famously known as the quarterback class of 1983, where he was taken by the Baltimore Colts before being traded to the Denver Broncos. In January 1987, Elway embarked on one of the most notable performances in sports and in NFL history, helping engineer a 98-yard, game-tying touchdown drive in the AFC Championship Game against the Cleveland Browns.
The moment is known in National Football League lore as "The Drive." Following that game in Cleveland and the Broncos lost in Super Bowl XXI to the New York Giants. After two more Super Bowl losses, the Broncos entered a period of decline; the Broncos repeated as champions the following season in Super Bowl XXXIII by defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34–19. Elway was voted MVP of that Super Bowl, the last game of his career, in doing so Elway set a then-record five Super Bowl starts, broken in February 2015 when Tom Brady of the New England Patriots started Super Bowl XLIX; as Denver's quarterback, Elway led his teams to six AFC Championship Games and five Super Bowls, winning two. After his retirement as a player, he served as general manager and executive vice president of football operations of the Broncos, which won four division titles, two AFC Championships, Super Bowl 50 during his tenure. Elway has been a member of the Broncos organization for all three of their Super Bowl victories, two as a player and one as an executive.
Elway was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004 in his first year of eligibility and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2000. Elway and his twin sister were born in Port Angeles, Washington, to Janet and Jack Elway the head coach at Port Angeles High School on the Olympic Peninsula; the family of five included sister Lee Ann, a year older than the twins. They moved the following year to southwestern Washington, where Jack was the junior college head football coach at Grays Harbor Community College in Aberdeen for five seasons; as a youth, Elway lived in Missoula and Pullman, when his father was an assistant coach at Montana and Washington State, respectively. In February 1976, Jack joined the staff at Palouse neighbor Idaho, but a month became the head coach at Cal State-Northridge, a Division II program in Southern California; the family moved after John's freshman year at Pullman High School to the San Fernando Valley, where he played his final three years of football at Granada Hills High School in Granada Hills, under head coaches Jack Neumeier and Tom Richards.
Despite missing five games with a knee injury as a senior, he ended his high school career with 5,711 passing yards and 49 passing touchdowns, was named to the PARADE All America High School Football Team, along with future NFL stars, quarterback Dan Marino and running back Eric Dickerson. Known as a dual-threat quarterback, meaning he was accomplished at running and escaping pressure and had impressive passing ability, he was the number-one recruited high school player in the country, receiving over 60 scholarship offers. An accomplished baseball player, Elway was selected by the Kansas City Royals in the 18th round of the 1979 Major League Baseball draft. In 1979, he enrolled at Stanford University, where he played baseball. In his senior season in 1982, Stanford was 5-5 and needed to win its final game, the Big Game against California, to secure an invitation to the Hall of Fame Classic bowl game. With two minutes remaining in the game, Stanford was down 19-17 and had 4th-and-17 on their own 13-yard line.
Elway completed a 29-yard pass and drove the ball downfield to the 35-yard line, where Mark Harmon kicked what appeared to be the winning field goal. However, the clock had four seconds remaining, so Stanford had to kick off. What followed is now known as "The Play", in which Cal players lateraled the ball, rugby-style, five times – two of them controversial – and scored a touchdown to win the game, 25-20. Elway was bitter about the game afterward, stating that the officials "ruined my last game as a college football player." Stanford athletics director Andy Geiger said. Twenty years Elway came to terms with The Play, saying that "each year it gets a little funnier."Although Elway never led his team to a bowl game, he had an accomplished college career. In his four seasons at Stanford, he completed 774 passes for 77 touchdowns. Stanford had a 20–23 record during his tenure. Elway's 24 touchdown passes in 1982 led the nation, at the conclusion of his career, he held nearly every Pacific-10 record for passing and total o
Steve Nelson Broussard is a former NFL player, having played running back for Atlanta and Seattle. He has served as a former assistant coach for several college football teams. Broussard starred at Washington State from 1985 to 1989, he led the Pac-10 in receiving as a sophomore and rushing as a junior, senior year led in All-Purpose yards and MVP Offensive. He ranked #9 in the nation in rushing yards per game that year, he completed his college career ranked third on WSU's all-time rushing list, fifth on the career receiving list, owned two of the top three single-season rushing marks. He was named to the 2015 Cougar Hall of Fame. Broussard was the 20th overall pick in the first round of the 1990 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons, he played for Atlanta from 1990 to 1993, played one season in Cincinnati four more for the Seattle Seahawks before retiring after the 1998 season. Note: G = Games played, he was the offensive coordinator at Don Lugo High School in Chino, CA before going to Diamond Ranch High School as offensive coordinator in 2001.
He became head coach at Diamond Ranch in 2002 and coached until 2003. His first season as head coach resulted in success with the Diamond Ranch Panthers taking the Mt. Baldy League Title. For the 2003 season, the Diamond Ranch Panthers were the heavy favorites to take the league title once again with several returning seniors on offense & defense, a talented junior class that featured three division I prospects; the Panthers finished 1-4 in Mt. Baldy League play for the 2003 season. Prior to the 2004 season, Portland State head coach Tim Walsh hired Broussard as a running backs coach. During the 2004 season, Broussard coached a first team All-Big Sky fullback in Allen Kennett, while running backs Joe Rubin and Ryan Fuqua combined to lead the Vikings to a Big Sky Conference best rushing average of 204.4 yards per game. Broussard coached the receivers his last 2 years at PSU until he was hired by Washington State prior to the 2007 season. On February 8, 2007, Washington State head coach Bill Doba announced that Broussard would be returning to WSU to serve as the Cougars' running backs coach and special teams coordinator.
In 2011, Broussard moved to Arizona State University to coach receivers. ASU ranked 10th in the nation in passing offense and receiver Gerell Robinson ranked ninth in the nation with 107. 5 receiving yards per game. During the 2010 season, Broussard's receiving corps ranked 15th in the nation and totaled 279 receptions for 3,437 yards and 23 touchdowns. In his first season with the UCLA Bruins, Broussard directed a running back group headed by senior Johnathan Franklin, who set new school season and career rushing marks on his way to earning All-America honors. Franklin, a finalist for the Doak Walker Award set a school record with nine 100-yard rushing games in 2012 and established new marks for both career and season all-purpose yardage, he went on to be selected by the Green Bay Packers in the 2013 NFL Draft. In his second season with the Bruins, Broussard directed a running back group headed by Myles Jack, who won Pac-12 Freshman of the Year in 2013-14 season. Jack set a UCLA single game scoring record with 4 touchdowns in a win over Washington on November 15, 2013.
Broussard reconnected with SMU head coach June Jones, the coach that had a part in drafting him in Atlanta, on the Mustangs where he coached the running backs for one season in 2014. During the 2015 season Broussard was the offensive coordinator at Pasadena City College. In April 2017 Broussard was hired as the new head coach at Fort Vancouver High School in Vancouver, Washington. In February 2018, Broussard was reported to be taking the head football coaching job at St. Monica Catholic High School in California
Jason Steven "Jake" Plummer is a former professional American football player, a quarterback for ten seasons in the National Football League. He was selected by the Arizona Cardinals in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft, spent his first six seasons with the Cardinals and the last four with the Denver Broncos. Plummer played college football at Arizona State University, his nickname, "Jake the Snake," was given to him as a tribute to professional wrestler, Jake "the Snake" Roberts. Coincidentally, Roberts adopted that nickname as a tribute to his favorite NFL player, former Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler, nicknamed "Snake." Plummer joined the Pac-12 Network in 2013 as a studio analyst for college football. Born in Boise, Idaho in 1974, Jake and his two older brothers spent much of their youth at the family lumber mill and warehouse in Smiley Creek, a town of 50 in the Sawtooths. Plummer attended Pierce Park Elementary, Hillside Junior High, graduated from Capital High School in 1993.
He was a three-sport star in high school, playing basketball in addition to football. Plummer was selected all-state as both a quarterback and punter and passed for 6,097 yards and 68 touchdowns in his junior and senior years. Plummer accepted a football scholarship to Arizona State University in Tempe, he did not redshirt and took over as the starting quarterback early in his freshman season in 1993. He had consistent, but not outstanding, statistical output during his career, never led the Pac-10 in any major statistical category, he threw for an impressive 1,650 yards in his freshman season, but had seven interceptions to just nine touchdowns. He broke 2,000 yards in 1994 as a sophomore, upped his touchdowns to 15; as a junior in 1995, his 2,222 yards and 17 touchdowns, many coming at pivotal moments in games, earned him a strong fan-base and all-conference honors despite a lackluster 6-5 record. His senior season in 1996 was arguably the best in school history. Arizona State attracted national attention on September 21 when they shut out top-ranked Nebraska 19–0 to snap the Huskers' 26-game winning streak.
Plummer evaded a sack to toss a 25-yard touchdown on the game's opening drive, finished 20 of 36 for 292 yards, setting a new school record for career passing yards in the process. He led ASU to an undefeated regular season and a Pac-10 championship, aided in no small part by fellow all-conference linebacker and close personal friend Pat Tillman. In the Rose Bowl, he scored a sensational 11-yard go-ahead touchdown run late in the fourth quarter, but Ohio State responded and won 20–17. A victory would have meant a national championship as the only undefeated team in the nation, but their final ranking was fourth. Plummer was third in the Heisman Trophy voting behind Florida's Danny Wuerffel and Iowa State's Troy Davis, was a second team All-American, the Pac-10's Offensive Player of the Year. Plummer ended his career with several school records. A dedicated student, Plummer was a two-time Academic All-Conference player. A 2013 review listed Jake Plummer as the 16th-best all-time Sun Devil player.
Plummer was drafted in the 2nd round of the 1997 NFL draft by the hometown Arizona Cardinals. He played behind Stoney Case at the start of his rookie season, he took his first snap late in the 4th quarter of game 7, promptly led the Cardinals on a 98-yard drive, going 4-of-6 for 87 yards and capping it with a 31-yard go-ahead touchdown. He led the Cardinals to 3 of their 4 victories that year. Locally popular from his days at ASU, according to teammate Chad Carpenter he was now treated "like a god. We go to a restaurant and people stand up and clap when he walks by." In 1998, the Cardinals drafted Plummer's friend Pat Tillman, the two started all 16 games en route to a 9–7 regular season record. In game 10 against Dallas Cowboys, he threw for three touchdowns. In the playoffs, he led the Cardinals to an upset of the same Cowboys for the franchise's first postseason victory since 1947, before losing in the second round to Minnesota Vikings. Plummer had a disappointing season in 1999. Regarding Plummer's season, the Football Outsiders commented: "At the start of the 1999 season, Jake Plummer was being celebrated as one of the NFL's best young quarterbacks, the man who would make the Cardinals respectable again.
By the end of the 1999 season, Plummer ranked as the league's worst quarterback." His reputation as a risk-taking "gunslinger" became a liability. In 2000 Plummer threw for 2,946 yards, 21 interceptions, had a 66.0 quarterback rating. Although he reached 10,000 career passing yards, Plummer compiled a 3–11 record and the Cardinals finished last in the NFC East. Plummer bounced back in 2001 with his best statistical season with the Cardinals, he was one of only two NFL quarterbacks to take every snap for his team, he passed for 3,653 yards, 18 touchdowns, 14 interceptions. During the season, he had a stretch of 142 consecutive pass attempts without throwing an interception. Plummer led the NFL in fourth-quarter passing yards and the Cardinals to a 7–9 record. Plummer's last season with the Cardinals was 2002 and again his statistics were down. On September 22 against the San Diego Chargers, he eclipsed 15,000 career passing yards; as of 2017's NFL off-season, Jake Plummer held at least 9 Cardinals franchise records, including: Passing TDs: rookie season, rookie game (4 on 1997