Greatest Alabama football career No. 10: Cornelius Bennett
Back in the 1980s, Cornelius Bennett was one of the very best linebackers in all of college football, playing a major role on Alabama’s defense and earning three nods as a First Team All-American. After winning SEC Player of the Year honors in 1986, Bennett was off to the NFL where he had quite the career.
Bennett was the second pick in the 1987 NFL Draft. Though he was taken by the Indianapolis Colts, he was soon dealt to the Buffalo Bills and would be a focal point for the Bills for much of the next decade.
He was a major weapon in Buffalo at outside linebacker, appearing in five Pro Bowls and helping the Bills make four straight Super Bowl appearances. Bennett was also a three-time First-Team All-Pro and racked up 52.5 sacks in his nine seasons in Buffalo.
After his time with the Bills, he spent three seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, appearing in a fifth Super Bowl in 1998, though his team lost this one as well. His final two seasons came with the same Colts team that had drafted him over a decade earlier, starting nearly every game of those last five years away from Buffalo.
When he retired in 2000, Bennett’s career stats were pretty impressive, and he later found his way into the College Football Hall of Fame. He had 71.5 sacks, and 27 fumble recoveries, and played in 21 playoff games. He was an impact piece on a few pretty nice defenses and his impact won’t be forgotten.