Howard Griffith

Howard Griffith

 Washington, Washington, D.C., USA
BandComedy

Howard Griffith, regarded as one of the NFLs best blocking backs, is currently a lead in- studio analyst for the Big Ten Network, where he uses his professional expertise to give his analysis of Big Ten Football Conference games. Additionally, he is co-host for ESPN-Radio Chicago, where he provides his weekly critique and analysis of the NFL.

Biography

Howard Griffith, regarded as one of the NFLs best blocking backs, is currently a lead in- studio analyst for the Big Ten Network, where he uses his professional expertise to give his analysis of Big Ten Football Conference games. Additionally, he is co-host for ESPN-Radio Chicago, where he provides his weekly critique and analysis of the NFL.
With a career spanning over a decade, Griffith, a star Full Back for the Denver Broncos, helped lead his team to Super Bowl XXXII and XXXIII championships. As an unrestricted free agent, Griffith signed with Denver for the 1997 season, and soon after, made a name for himself as the man who assisted the teams star Tail Back to achieve over 2000 rushing yards in a regular season. Griffiths athletic ability, as well as his leadership skills on and off the field, captured the attention of the national sports media and the respect of his peers.
Many of Griffiths other league affiliations made headlines throughout his career, such as with the Carolina Panthers expansion team, where he became the first player in their teams history to score a touchdown both, rushing and receiving. He also played an integral part in leading the team to their first NFC Championship Game. Griffith was named Offensive Player of the Week seven times in his career.
Griffith attended the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana). He became the football teams captain and proceeded to break several football records. To date, he continues to hold one of the top five receiving records at the University. Griffith graduated in 1991 receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Communications.
Upon his retirement from the NFL, Griffith began working as a football analyst. In 2005, he was an analyst for the NFL and NFL Europe football leagues, providing sports commentary for games that were broadcast by FOX and the NFL Networks. In 2001, Griffith published his sports memoir, LAYING IT ON THE LINE (Sports Publishing Inc: 2001) that chronicles his football journey from the South Side of Chicago to the Super Bowl.
Griffith continues to spend his time on various entrepreneurial and charitable ventures. Most recently, he co-founded Turbo Athletics, a first class Sports Academy, where young student- athletes, through camps and workshops, are motivated and trained to excel athletically and academically. He is a former board member of the National Able Network, and has volunteered with the March of Dimes. He is the founder of the Hyde Park Jr. Spartans Youth Football League. And he serves on the advisory council of the United Youth Football League. In the summer of 2011, Griffith will be inducted into The Chicagoland Sports Hall Of Fame. He and his wife Kim live in Chicago with their two sons, Howard II and Houston.

Discography

TEAM STATS:
Mendel Catholic High School (1982-1985): During his freshman & sophomore Griffith excelled at football & baseball. His junior campaign was cut short by a broken ankle sustained in practice.

Perry Julian High School: Transferred in 1986; was named all city and honorable mention All- State for his football efforts. Griffith excelled in the Radio & TV department where he was involved with several school productions. Griffith turned down many offers to attend from D2 schools and JC to walk-on at his dream university - The University of Illinois.

University of Illinois (1986-1991): He became the football team’s captain and proceeded to break several football records including, Jim Brown’s 48 point game record and Harold “Red” Grange’s 33 touchdowns in a career. Griffith set & holds Illinois & NCAA records with eight (8) touchdowns and 48 points in one game, becoming the third all-time leading rusher in Illinois history. Griffith graduated in 1991 receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Communications.

Indianapolis Colts (1991): Drafted in 9th round (236 overall pick).

Buffalo Bills (1991): Signed to the practice squad.

San Diego Chargers (1992): Signed to the practice squad.

Los Angeles Rams (1993-1994): Returned kick-off avg. 21-yd per return before becoming the starting full back; played with Future Hall Of Famer, Jerome Bettis. Griffith first start came in 1994 against the Green Bay Packers in historic Lambeau Field.

Carolina Panthers (1995-1996): Drafted 16th overall in the 1995 expansion draft. Became the first player in franchise history to score both running & receiving touchdowns in the same game. Scored the Panthers only touchdown in the 1996
NFC Championship Game at Green Bay.

Denver Broncos: 1997-2001 Griffith joined the Denver Broncos, and played five seasons for the Broncos primarily as a blocking back for Terrell Davis. Griffith was often used as a receiver out of the backfield, recording 27 receptions in 1996 and 26 in 1999. With the Broncos, Griffith won 2 Super Bowl rings in Super Bowl XXXII and Super Bowl XXXIII. Griffith was a big contributor in the Broncos Super Bowl XXXIII wins, scoring 2 rushing touchdowns in the game. He also made a key 23-yard reception in the final quarter of Super Bowl XXXII, setting up Denver's final touchdown of the game. While playing for the Denver Broncos, Griffith earned the nickname “The Human Plow” due to his extremely successful blocking for Terrell Davis. Griffith was the first full back in NFL history to block for 6 different tail backs.

Griffith was forced to retire from the NFL at the start of the 2002 season, due to a neck injury. In 1997, he assisted Dr J.W. Smith in establishing the Chicago Public Schools elementary football program which is still going strong in 2011.