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TrueBlue4ever

The MBB All-time Blue Bomber Team: Safety

The MBB All-time Blue Bomber Team: Safety  

21 members have voted

This poll is closed to new votes
  1. 1. Who is the Blue Bombers all-time greatest safety (vote for one)?

    • Paul Bennett
      8
    • Paul Brule
      0
    • Grady Cavness
      1
    • Tom Europe
      3
    • Scott Flagel
      1
    • Brian Herosian
      1
    • Taylor Loffler
      1
    • Ian Logan
      0
    • Norm Rauhaus
      3
    • Bennie Thompson
      3
    • Ed Ulmer
      0

  • Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.
  • Poll closed on 12/29/18 at 05:59 AM

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Vote for only one. Here is a list of bios:

Paul Bennett – 61 games in 4 seasons (1980-83), 18 Int., 437 yards, 4.5 sacks, divisional all-star in 1982 and 83, CFL all-star in 1983, CFL Most Outstanding Canadian player in 1983, 1982 team nominee Most Outstanding Defensive player, CFL Hall of Fame

 

Paul Brule – 63 games in 4 seasons (1968-71), 14 Int., 238 yards, 1 fumble recovery, 0 yards, 1970 divisional all-star, team nominee Most Outstanding Canadian player in 1970, Canadian Football Hall of Fame

 

Grady Cavness – 28 games in 2 seasons (1972-73), 11 Int., 203 yards, 4 fumble recoveries, divisional and CFL all-star in 1972

 

Tom Europe – 79 games in 5 seasons (1999-2003), 8 Int., 168 yards, 2 fumble recoveries, 46 yards, 1 TD, 167 tackles, 2 sacks, divisional all-star in 2002, Grey Cup appearance in 2001

 

Scott Flagel – 91 games in 6 seasons (1982-87), 16 Int., 291 yards, 2 TDs, 9 fumble recoveries, 50 yards, 41 tackles in 1987, 2 sacks, 3 time divisional all-star (1985-87), CFL all-star 1986 and 1987, 1987 CFL Most Outstanding Canadian player, 1984 Grey Cup Cahmpion

 

Brian Herosian – 65 games in 5 seasons (1975-79), 17 Int., 183 yards, 5 fumble recoveries, 7 yards, divisional all-star in 1975 and 76, CFL all-star in 1976, team nominee for outstanding defensive player in 1975 and 1977

 

Taylor Loffler – 50 games in 3 seasons (2016-18), 8 Int., 166 yards, 7 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 10 yards, 185 tackles, 1 sack, 3 time divisional all-star (2016-18), 3 time CFL all-star (2016-18), CFLPA all-star in 2017 and 2018, team nominee for Outstanding Rookie player 2016

 

Ian Logan – 99 games in 7 seasons (2006-12), 12 Int. 76 yards, 1 fumble recovery, 0 yards, 224 tackles, 4 sacks, divisional, CFL and CFLPA all-star in 2011, Grey Cup appearance in 2011

 

Norm Rauhaus – 185 games in 12 seasons (1956-67), 34 Int., 322 yards, 1 TD, 17 fumble recoveries, 130 yards, 3 TDs, divisional all-star in 1961, team nominee for Outstanding Canadian player in 1961, 4 time Grey Cup champion (1958, 59, 61, 62), 6 Grey Cup appearances (1957-59, 61, 62, 65)

 

Bennie Thompson – 35 games in 3 seasons* (1986-88), 7 Int., 107 yards, 4 fumble recoveries, 10 yards, 119 tackles, 9 sacks, 1988 divisional and CFL all-star, *1988 stat line (his one season as a safety) – 4 Int., 58 yards, 2 fumble recoveries, 2 yards, 82 tackles, 7 sacks in 18 games, 1986 team nominee for Outstanding Rookie player, 1988 team nominee for Outstanding Defensive player, 1988 Grey Cup champion

 

Ed Ulmer – 99 games in 7 seasons (1965-71), 25 Int., 340 yards, 1 TD, 7 fumble recoveries, 0 yards, 1966 divisional and CFL all-star, 1965 Grey Cup appearance

Edited by TrueBlue4ever

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One man's take:

Safety is an unusual position on this all-time list. Stats are often secondary when judging a safety, most people want the big hitter who makes opponents fear going to the tough areas, so their best attribute is NOT being thrown to, even though as a rover type of player, they could be in on any given pass play and therefore could inflate their stats. I sense that personal name recognition and club success during their tenure will sway the vote heavily here. I see no clear-cut favorite, but here is my assessment.

 

Brule, Cavness, Logan, Ulmer - all played in the dead zone eras of the club in the mid-60's to mid 70's, and mid-2000's in Logan's case, when the team was awful, so that hurts their name recognition for younger MBB members. Each had one notable season during their tenure where they got league recognition (Ulmer has bigger numbers due to longer tenure) but none strike me as serious contenders for votes.

Europe - profile heightened by being on a powerhouse team, but he wasn't really an all-timer at safety, numbers or impact-wise. Also, played here at the end of a career that spanned a few teams, so take his non-Bomber achievements out of the equation.

So 6 to ponder:

Bennett - when I first thought of safeties, he jumped right out at me, but I may be biased because I was indoctrinated as a youngster on the Bombers when he first arrived. Still, was an impact player when he was here. Also carried his talents over to Hamilton where he continued his dominance at the league level (won some major awards during his tenure there), but this poll is supposed to ignore his contributions to other clubs, and his talents at other positions too (this really hurts him, because he was so effective as a punt returner here, but that is not to be factored in). I am waffling on him a bit now, as I examined the other nominees' bios. Played less games here too, so maybe I am looking too hard at strikes against him.

Herosian - a bit before my time so I can't make a fully fair judgement on him, but I do know the name. Personal tragedies score him sympathy votes, but he seems to have had a pretty dominant 3 year run with the club in any event, even if it was at a low point in the club's history success-wise. It is quite something when a safety can be nominated twice as the club's outstanding defender, much less even once, so big points there for him.

Loffler - let's face it, he will not win this or even come close. Sadly, that may be as much a result of the schizophrenia that has overtaken so much of this board due to the club's struggles and the need to find scapegoats (don't believe me? Quick, without looking it up, can anyone NOT tell me how long since the last Grey Cup win, and hey did you see the posts immediately after, I don't know, EVERY SINGLE Bomber loss this year - this place is nuts). Actually, his newness hurts, and he may be more appreciated a few years down the road, but no other player on this list has been a 3-time CFL all-star, much less been one every year they have played, so is undisputed as the best in the business right now, for what it's worth. And his peers in the CFLPA back up that sentiment. Give him 3 more years at his current pace of success and I think he may well win the vote if we do this again in 2025.

Thompson - I will again remind people not to consider anything other than the Bomber careers of the nominees, so no brownie points given for the fact that he clearly was (like Bolden at halfback) too good for the CFL, and had a long career of achievement in the NFL after he left. And when you break it down, he was only a safety for one year, so I personally don't think he warrants recognition over other longer standing players. Having said that, WOW, what a year for the ages he had in 1988 (82 tackles! And who ever had 7 sacks from the safety spot???).  But one great year should not outweigh all else, in my mind (but hey, I used that logic for Bolden and voted for Casey and Hailey over him, and look where that got me, so I suspect I am shouting at the trees here). Bonus points for a cool nickname (calling a safety "hit man"  and having it become his personal moniker is like calling a goalie "brick wall" and having it stick, you've basically anointed them as the best ever right there).

Rauhaus - this is where different eras make these polls tricky. Safety was a different role in the 1960's (see Stats Junkie's brilliant post on the evolution of the game and the positions for a primer), but the cold numbers say his 34 interceptions are second-best in club history, and 17 fumble recoveries is an eye-popping number. Played in the golden era, and his 4 rings are quadruple anyone else on the list.

Flagel - I wonder how many who never saw the mid-1980's Bomber team even heard of him, but he checks all the boxes for all-time great. Tenure (how many safeties grind out 6 years as an unchallenged starter these days), check. Stats (25 total turnovers is #3 on this list), check. League recognition (only Loffler compares to his 6 all-star and player award wins), check. Cup ring, check. I fear he will be the Ken Hailey of this poll, a brilliant player who is fully deserving of all-time great recognition, but will be overlooked due to being "consistently great" rather than "one season all-world" and not known by the younger MBB board members.

In the end, from 6 to 1 I would rank them right now as Herosian, Thompson (ouch, but only one season just can't be graded higher) , Loffler (yah, he could be #6 too), Bennett, Rauhaus, and Flagel at the top. Now ask me again tomorrow, when I completely flip this order. I've surprised myself that I didn't still have Bennett as a lock once I dug into this analysis.

Edited by TrueBlue4ever

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I absolutely loved the way Brian Herosian played safety. For a few short years he was the dominant safety in the CFL before his tragic car accident. But the best safety we ever had was Paul Bennett without a doubt. He deserves to win this round of the competition at that position.

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4 hours ago, TrueBlue4ever said:

Vote for only one. Here is a list of bios:

Paul Bennett – 61 games in 4 seasons (1980-83), 18 Int., 437 yards, 4.5 sacks, divisional all-star in 1982 and 83, CFL all-star in 1983, CFL Most Outstanding Canadian player in 1983, 1982 team nominee Most Outstanding Defensive player, CFL Hall of Fame

 

Paul Brule – 63 games in 4 seasons (1968-71), 14 Int., 238 yards, 1 fumble recovery, 0 yards, 1970 divisional all-star, team nominee Most Outstanding Canadian player in 1970, Canadian Football Hall of Fame

 

Grady Cavness – 28 games in 2 seasons (1972-73), 11 Int., 203 yards, 4 fumble recoveries, divisional and CFL all-star in 1972

 

Tom Europe – 79 games in 5 seasons (1999-2003), 8 Int., 168 yards, 2 fumble recoveries, 46 yards, 1 TD, 167 tackles, 2 sacks, divisional all-star in 2002, Grey Cup appearance in 2001

 

Scott Flagel – 91 games in 6 seasons (1982-87), 16 Int., 291 yards, 2 TDs, 9 fumble recoveries, 50 yards, 41 tackles in 1987, 2 sacks, 3 time divisional all-star (1985-87), CFL all-star 1986 and 1987, 1987 CFL Most Outstanding Canadian player, 1984 Grey Cup Cahmpion

 

Brian Herosian – 65 games in 5 seasons (1975-79), 17 Int., 183 yards, 5 fumble recoveries, 7 yards, divisional all-star in 1975 and 76, CFL all-star in 1976, team nominee for outstanding defensive player in 1975 and 1977

 

Taylor Loffler – 50 games in 3 seasons (2016-18), 8 Int., 166 yards, 7 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 10 yards, 185 tackles, 1 sack, 3 time divisional all-star (2016-18), 3 time CFL all-star (2016-18), CFLPA all-star in 2017 and 2018, team nominee for Outstanding Rookie player 2016

 

Ian Logan – 99 games in 7 seasons (2006-12), 12 Int. 76 yards, 1 fumble recovery, 0 yards, 224 tackles, 4 sacks, divisional, CFL and CFLPA all-star in 2011, Grey Cup appearance in 2011

 

Norm Rauhaus – 185 games in 12 seasons (1956-67), 34 Int., 322 yards, 1 TD, 17 fumble recoveries, 130 yards, 3 TDs, divisional all-star in 1961, team nominee for Outstanding Canadian player in 1961, 4 time Grey Cup champion (1958, 59, 61, 62), 6 Grey Cup appearances (1957-59, 61, 62, 65)

 

Bennie Thompson – 35 games in 3 seasons* (1986-88), 7 Int., 107 yards, 4 fumble recoveries, 10 yards, 119 tackles, 9 sacks, 1988 divisional and CFL all-star, *1988 stat line (his one season as a safety) – 4 Int., 58 yards, 2 fumble recoveries, 2 yards, 82 tackles, 7 sacks in 18 games, 1986 team nominee for Outstanding Rookie player, 1988 team nominee for Outstanding Defensive player, 1988 Grey Cup champion

 

Ed Ulmer – 99 games in 7 seasons (1965-71), 25 Int., 340 yards, 1 TD, 7 fumble recoveries, 0 yards, 1966 divisional and CFL all-star, 1965 Grey Cup appearance

Ulmer played in the 65 Grey Cup. He was a great player on a very bad team as that 65 Grey Cup team would be the only great team he'd play on. Ulmer played on some brutal teams between 1967-70. Felt bad for the guy. It must've been a frustrating experience. He never whined about it or demanded out like running back Dave Raimey did &  was traded to the Argos. I respect Ulmer a lot for always playing hard, never complaining  & seldom winning.

Edited by SpeedFlex27

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4 hours ago, SpeedFlex27 said:

 

 

I absolutely loved the way Brian Herosian played safety. For a few short years he was the dominant safety in the CFL before his tragic car accident. But the best safety we ever had was Paul Bennett without a doubt. He deserves to win this round of the competition at that position.

My first thought was Brian Herosian, but on reflection, it should be Paul Bennett, and he was a Canuck to boot, was he not?

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And 2 time winner as Most Outstanding Canadian in the league (second one was with Hamilton). Safety has pretty much always been a position where a Canadian player has been utilized. Aside from Thompson, without researching and confirming it, I think everyone else on the list is Canadian. 

Edited by TrueBlue4ever

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I finally opted for Bennett, who seems well on his way to winning the vote. This feels right. Not the biggest hitter, not the explosive numbers, but he was definitely a field general from his position and a sure tackler. His role was so much more than just the big hit or the last line of defence, really a defensive captain like a middle linebacker would be, and he was a known force throughout his career at the position.

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On ‎2018‎-‎12‎-‎21 at 12:56 PM, TrueBlue4ever said:

One man's take:

Safety is an unusual position on this all-time list. Stats are often secondary when judging a safety, most people want the big hitter who makes opponents fear going to the tough areas, so their best attribute is NOT being thrown to, even though as a rover type of player, they could be in on any given pass play and therefore could inflate their stats. I sense that personal name recognition and club success during their tenure will sway the vote heavily here. I see no clear-cut favorite, but here is my assessment.

 

Brule, Cavness, Logan, Ulmer - all played in the dead zone eras of the club in the mid-60's to mid 70's, and mid-2000's in Logan's case, when the team was awful, so that hurts their name recognition for younger MBB members. Each had one notable season during their tenure where they got league recognition (Ulmer has bigger numbers due to longer tenure) but none strike me as serious contenders for votes.

Europe - profile heightened by being on a powerhouse team, but he wasn't really an all-timer at safety, numbers or impact-wise. Also, played here at the end of a career that spanned a few teams, so take his non-Bomber achievements out of the equation.

So 6 to ponder:

Bennett - when I first thought of safeties, he jumped right out at me, but I may be biased because I was indoctrinated as a youngster on the Bombers when he first arrived. Still, was an impact player when he was here. Also carried his talents over to Hamilton where he continued his dominance at the league level (won some major awards during his tenure there), but this poll is supposed to ignore his contributions to other clubs, and his talents at other positions too (this really hurts him, because he was so effective as a punt returner here, but that is not to be factored in). I am waffling on him a bit now, as I examined the other nominees' bios. Played less games here too, so maybe I am looking too hard at strikes against him.

Herosian - a bit before my time so I can't make a fully fair judgement on him, but I do know the name. Personal tragedies score him sympathy votes, but he seems to have had a pretty dominant 3 year run with the club in any event, even if it was at a low point in the club's history success-wise. It is quite something when a safety can be nominated twice as the club's outstanding defender, much less even once, so big points there for him.

Loffler - let's face it, he will not win this or even come close. Sadly, that may be as much a result of the schizophrenia that has overtaken so much of this board due to the club's struggles and the need to find scapegoats (don't believe me? Quick, without looking it up, can anyone NOT tell me how long since the last Grey Cup win, and hey did you see the posts immediately after, I don't know, EVERY SINGLE Bomber loss this year - this place is nuts). Actually, his newness hurts, and he may be more appreciated a few years down the road, but no other player on this list has been a 3-time CFL all-star, much less been one every year they have played, so is undisputed as the best in the business right now, for what it's worth. And his peers in the CFLPA back up that sentiment. Give him 3 more years at his current pace of success and I think he may well win the vote if we do this again in 2025.

Thompson - I will again remind people not to consider anything other than the Bomber careers of the nominees, so no brownie points given for the fact that he clearly was (like Bolden at halfback) too good for the CFL, and had a long career of achievement in the NFL after he left. And when you break it down, he was only a safety for one year, so I personally don't think he warrants recognition over other longer standing players. Having said that, WOW, what a year for the ages he had in 1988 (82 tackles! And who ever had 7 sacks from the safety spot???).  But one great year should not outweigh all else, in my mind (but hey, I used that logic for Bolden and voted for Casey and Hailey over him, and look where that got me, so I suspect I am shouting at the trees here). Bonus points for a cool nickname (calling a safety "hit man"  and having it become his personal moniker is like calling a goalie "brick wall" and having it stick, you've basically anointed them as the best ever right there).

Rauhaus - this is where different eras make these polls tricky. Safety was a different role in the 1960's (see Stats Junkie's brilliant post on the evolution of the game and the positions for a primer), but the cold numbers say his 34 interceptions are second-best in club history, and 17 fumble recoveries is an eye-popping number. Played in the golden era, and his 4 rings are quadruple anyone else on the list.

Flagel - I wonder how many who never saw the mid-1980's Bomber team even heard of him, but he checks all the boxes for all-time great. Tenure (how many safeties grind out 6 years as an unchallenged starter these days), check. Stats (25 total turnovers is #3 on this list), check. League recognition (only Loffler compares to his 6 all-star and player award wins), check. Cup ring, check. I fear he will be the Ken Hailey of this poll, a brilliant player who is fully deserving of all-time great recognition, but will be overlooked due to being "consistently great" rather than "one season all-world" and not known by the younger MBB board members.

In the end, from 6 to 1 I would rank them right now as Herosian, Thompson (ouch, but only one season just can't be graded higher) , Loffler (yah, he could be #6 too), Bennett, Rauhaus, and Flagel at the top. Now ask me again tomorrow, when I completely flip this order. I've surprised myself that I didn't still have Bennett as a lock once I dug into this analysis.

Comments deleted. 

 

Edited by SpeedFlex27

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