Great players from several eras and positions are included in the second class of the Giants’ Ring of Honor, which the team revealed today.
The year’s group is: running back Alex Webster, linebackers Brad Van Pelt and Carl Banks, tight end Mark Bavaro and punter Dave Jennings.
They will be formally inducted into the Ring of Honor at halftime of the Giants’ game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday in MetLife Stadium.
“I’m honored and humbled and I never expected it,” Banks said of his induction. “That’s not why I played. I played to help my team, but I’m glad it’s happening.”
“It’s an honor,” Bavaro said. “It’s great company to be in. It’s very fitting I’m going in with Carl Banks. He helped me become a better player by practicing against him all the time.”
The five former players will join the original 30-member Ring of Honor class that included Wellington Mara, Bob Tisch, Frank Gifford, Mel Hein, Bill Parcells and Harry Carson.
The Giants’ 20011 Ring of Honor inductees:
Webster played his entire 10-year career (1955-64) for the Giants. He played in 109 games and
47 years after his retirement, he is fourth on the Giants’ career lists with 4,638 rushing yards and 1,196 carries. He also caught 240 passes for 2,679 yards and scored 56 touchdowns (39 rushing, 17 receiving). Webster was the second-leading rusher and scorer and the third-leading receiver for the 1956 NFL champion Giants. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1958 and 1961, when he ran for a career-high 928 yards. Webster was the Giants’ head coach from 1969-73.
Brad Van Pelt
Van Pelt played for the Giants from 1973-83, when the team had only one winning record, but he was one of the team’s very best players. Van Pelt joined Carson, Brian Kelley and later Lawrence Taylor to form the famed group of linebackers known as the “Crunch Bunch.” He was selected to play in the Pro Bowl every season from 1976-80. Van Pelt played in 143 games for the Giants in four home stadiums - Yankee Stadium, Yale Bowl, Shea Stadium and Giants Stadium – and for five head coaches - Bill Arnsparger, John McVay, Ray Perkins and Bill Parcells. He had 16 interceptions for the Giants. Van Pelt died on Feb. 17, 2009.
Banks was the third overall selection of the 1984 NFL Draft and played for the Giants through the 1992 season. He was one of the premier run-stoppers of his era, a standout on the teams that won Super Bowls XXI and XXV, a Pro Bowler in 1987 and a member of the NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team. Banks played in 126 regular season games and had 36.0 sacks, three interceptions and approximately 500 tackles. Banks is still closely affiliated with the Giants; since 2007, he has been an analyst on the Giants’ radio broadcasts.
Bavaro is one of the finest all-around tight ends in Giants history. An outstanding blocker, he is also 10th on the franchise’s career list with 266 receptions and 15th with 3,722 yards. Bavaro was a starter on the Giants’ 1986 and 1990 Super Bowl championship teams and a Pro Bowler in 1986 and ‘87. In the Giants’ first Super Bowl season, Bavaro led the team with 66 catches – twice as many as any teammate – for 1,001 yards to become the only tight end in Giants history with 1,000 receiving yards in a season.
Jennings is the most prolific punter in Giants history. A member of the team from 1974-84, Jennings holds the franchise records for punts (931) and yards (38,792). He was selected to play in the Pro Bowl in 1978, ‘79, ‘80 and ‘82. He punted a career-high 104 times in 1979, twice punted for more than 4,000 yards in a season and had a career-best 44.8-yard average in 1980.
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