FanDuel - WFBC

November 05, 2009

NFL's Dirtiest Player: Hines Ward: A survey of 296 NFL players conducted by Sports Illustrated finds that the NFL's dirtiest player is Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward. "That's what he's known for," Cincinnati Bengals safety Chinedum Ndukwe said. "He's a blind-side guy." The rest of the top 5 are Washington defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, Miami linebacker Joey Porter, Cincinatti safety Roy Williams and Tennessee center Kevin Mawae.

posted by rcade to football at 02:13 PM - 27 comments

I can't help but feel a bit vindicated by that survey; I've been calling Ward dirty as hell for years but, as a Bengal fan, people just think I'm biased. It drives me nuts when the announcers celebrate his tenacity after he leaves his feet and leads with his head to make a "block." When a defensive player does it, he gets flagged every time; when he does it to Ward, there is outrage on the part of both Ward and the commentary staff.

posted by tahoemoj at 03:30 PM on November 05

How can anybody respect a guy like this? I mean I can't stomache to look at a player as dirty as Ward. And what are the Steelers doing about it? The answer to this is so simple. It wouldn't take anything more than a good equipment manager and the problem would be solved.

What's that, you say? This is about unsportsmanlike conduct and not schmutz on his uniform? Oh.

Nevermind.

posted by THX-1138 at 03:31 PM on November 05

people just think I'm biased.

Amen tahoe, every Steeler fan should be forced to read, then re-read this. I am so tired of hearing how great Ward is. Plus when loud mouth Joey Porter was there, they thought he was a god. The big problem is 99.9% of them wouldn't even care.

posted by jojomfd1 at 03:54 PM on November 05

I wonder if Ward feels proud that his peers in much of the league consider him the top dirty player. Quite an accomplishment for a receiver.

posted by irunfromclones at 04:38 PM on November 05

I was thinking the same thing, irunfromclones... I expected a lineman or a tight end to get top honors.

posted by dusted at 04:40 PM on November 05

I was born and raised in Cincy, so my disdain for the Steelers runs deep. I actually thought Porter was bigger punk though. At least Ward keeps his cheap hits on the field .

posted by Tigginator at 06:23 PM on November 05

people just think I'm biased.

Amen tahoe ...The big problem is 99.9% of them

Yeah, I hate when people stereotype me while I'm busy stereotyping them too.

posted by Ufez Jones at 07:54 PM on November 05

So defensive players don't like Ward cause he hits back, and that makes him dirty?

Sounds like sour grapes to me.

posted by BikeNut at 08:55 AM on November 06

What a great honor to be an offensive player that is that good on playing defense for the running backs and other receivers. It shows that the other defense is scared of him. With all the dirty players on defense,he has made them feel like wimps.Anybody that watches him play knows that he gives 100% and always has a smile on his face because the defensve players can't handle him.That's why he was the recipent of this vote.

posted by Doehead at 09:26 AM on November 06

Gotta agree Bike nut. Players on defense are just not used to having to have their head on a swivel too. 15 games a season, they see wide recievers that cannot/will not block. Hines takes your head off, he must be dirty. Now i know I am a Steelers fan, but I did read it 2 times like jojo said. If you saw the steelers play every week, you would see he is a tough all around "football" player, not a diva receiver who is scared of contact and cant help in the run game.

Cincy fans do not get a vote because Hines broke that guys jaw on a clean hit and they have hated him since. Sorry, but since Carson got his knee blown out in that playoff game, the Steelers have been public enemy #1.

posted by Debo270 at 09:39 AM on November 06

Joey Porter was a Douchbag. I will agree on that for sure.

posted by Debo270 at 10:07 AM on November 06

I just don't see Hines Ward as a "dirty player". IMO he was voted as the top guy for the NFL's Dirtiest Player honors just because he hits back.

Players on defense are just not used to having to have their head on a swivel too

I agree. Troy Polamalu is also on this list and he is by far one of the most intimidating defensive player in the league because he is successful.

I just hate that none of my 'Boys were on the list from either defense or offense.

posted by BornIcon at 10:19 AM on November 06

BI, I was Going to say the same thing about Troy, but didnt want to be accused of being a homer. Glad someone agrees. If hitting back makes you dirty, then I would gladly have my whole team called dirty.

I just hate that none of my 'Boys were on the list from either defense or offense.

You can still sorta claim Roy Williams

posted by Debo270 at 10:26 AM on November 06

The survey was conducted by Sports Illustrated, which polled only 296 of the league's 1,693 players.

I would like to know what teams were polled. That may have alot to do with the choices in the article. Thats not even 20% of the NFL's players. Bet Cincy players were polled by the results.

posted by Debo270 at 10:42 AM on November 06

I think it is a bogus and unscientific poll. Where is the data for flags and or fines? Whoever tops that list—unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, fines for dangerous hits, etc—is the league's "dirtiest player." I think too many of the respondents had their bell rung by one of the hardest playing wide receivers ever. Sour grapes.

For the record, this Steelers' fan was glad to see Joey Porter leave the organization. He was and forever will be an asshat.

What pisses me off is how Ray Lewis is having his reputation redefined by the networks. Now he is an inspirational player, a teacher. When Steve McNair was murdered ESPN did a whole special interview with Lewis where he went on about how he is a role model for McNair's kid(s?). Ray Lewis is a thug, and always will be. That hit on Chad Johnson was as dirty as they come, but now he is Saint Ray the mentor. Grrrr...

posted by scully at 11:01 AM on November 06

The survey was conducted by Sports Illustrated, which polled only 296 of the league's 1,693 players.

Only 296? That's more than enough of a sample to get a good idea of which players have the worst reputation for taking cheap shots.

posted by rcade at 11:15 AM on November 06

Only 296? That's more than enough of a sample to get a good idea of which players have the worst reputation for taking cheap shots.

No it is not. There is a good chance many of the players polled have never played against half the teams in the NFL. It does not say players from all 32 teams were polled. most of the dirty players chosen were from AFC teams causeing me to think more AFC players were polled then Nfc. I think this is a very Bias poll.

20% is a good percentage of people to ask if you are looking at a question that has nothing to do with who you are playing every season, but without knowing who was polled, you cannot say this survey has any validity

posted by Debo270 at 11:34 AM on November 06

Nor can you categorically say it's invalid, really.

posted by Hugh Janus at 11:39 AM on November 06

The survey should be stricken from the record

posted by Debo270 at 12:11 PM on November 06

Debo: Your expectations for what constitutes a valid survey seem awfully high to me, given that political polls (a subject of vastly more importance) are extrapolated from much smaller percentages of the groups involved.

I think there's value in SI getting almost 300 current NFL athletes to name the dirtiest players in the league. That's a large response in my opinion.

The fact that Hines Ward won it is pretty remarkable, given his position. He's either angered a lot of players with cheap shots or developed a Snake Plissken-like rep that's taken on a life of its own. In either case, he has to be tough as hell to play in a game where the incentive to knock his block off must be huge. Hell, if I ran into him on the street I think I might clothesline him.

posted by rcade at 12:42 PM on November 06

Don't know if I agree with the result but I'll take a survey like this over any list of penalties as an indicator of dirty players. You think the officials can see or call everything at the bottom of the pile after a fumble? Some of the worst cheap shots I've seen never resulted in flags (Warren Sapp on Chad Clifton for a dirty hit that was with the rules).

Ward got the top spot because he stands out from the rest of the WR/RB crowd. He's the only "skill" player that regularly leads with the helmet, etc., while half the guards and centers in the NFL are poking eyes very chance they get. He is comparatively dirtier than his contemporaries, probably not dirtiest overall.

posted by deflated at 01:00 PM on November 06

You can still sorta claim Roy Williams

No thank you. Cincinnati can have him, he just wasn't what the 'Boys expected when we...er, they drafted him.

posted by BornIcon at 01:28 PM on November 06

Cincy fans do not get a vote because Hines broke that guys jaw on a clean hit

I'm pretty sure this was a player poll. Seems pretty silly to me that you think this is somehow a Cincinnati based survey, and that's the only reason Ward gats called dirty. There's other wide receivers out there who play the game with tenacity and toughness, they don't get called dirty. As I said before, Ward leaves his feet and leads with his head, that's dirty. Players seem to feel that he hits from behind, that's dirty. Whether or not you agree, it seems to me that you're grasping at straws to invalidate this poll which, as I think I mentioned, was of players, and not just Bengal players.

posted by tahoemoj at 02:11 PM on November 06

Debo: Your expectations for what constitutes a valid survey seem awfully high to me, given that political polls (a subject of vastly more importance) are extrapolated from much smaller percentages of the groups involved.

While I would agree with you in the sense of a political poll, with 20% being enough of a sampling to get pretty reliable results, there are major differences. In a political poll, you choose person A,B,or C. Most people would know something about the person and you would get good results if the survey was done over a diverse section of the population. If the survey was done in one area, the results would be skewed/squewed. If you took an Obama/McCain poll before the election in "the hood" vs "the deep south" you would get very different results.

That being said, if SI had said we polled 9 random players from all 32 teams(9.25 if you do the math also making me think it is inaccurate) I would believe it but if i dont know the sample, I can't trust the results.

The steelers have not played Tampa Bay in a few years. I would wager if Tampa players were surveyed, more would pick players in their division they play 2 times a year. If 53 players from the Bengals were asked, 52 would say Hines Ward.

All i am saying is I would put more faith in the results if I knew what the sample group was.

posted by Debo270 at 02:15 PM on November 06

Cincy fans do not get a vote because Hines broke that guys jaw on a clean hit

That part was a joke tahoe

posted by Debo270 at 02:16 PM on November 06

Fair enough. And in return, I freely admit to my bias. I just think you should be a little more open to the possibility that Ward is as dirty as these players say he is. I'd love to have a receiver who plays every down like he does and is as willing to block as he is, I'm just glad that his tactics are being recognized for what they are.

posted by tahoemoj at 03:21 PM on November 06

The sample size is plenty large enough to hold validity, in fact it's probably several times larger than it really needs to be. All that is really needed is fairly equal representation from each team. If they told me that two players from each team were interviewed I'd be totally fine with the results.

Keep in mind that players on teams talk, and they all view films, so if a guy is a cheap shot artist, they get talked about. I doubt a guy could make the list to the level that Ward did without some validity to it. Guys on the bottom of the list might get there due to just one, or two hits, but you don't get top billing without some consistent level of dirty play. Twice as many listed Ward as they did the second place guy. That does send a message.

Unless someone can prove that they only talked to AFC defensive players, or all of the Bengal players and none of the Steelers, I think the survey hold water. Keep in mind that the league fined him twice last year, so it's not exactly virgin territory to be calling Ward a cheap shot.

posted by dviking at 04:15 PM on November 06

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