Patrick L. Willis life and biography

Patrick L. Willis picture, image, poster

Patrick L. Willis biography

Date of birth : 1985-01-25
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Bruceton, Tennessee
Nationality : American
Category : Sports
Last modified : 2010-10-15
Credited as : Football player NFL, linebacker for the 49ers, Pro Bowl/NFL Draft player

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In a limited amount of time, Patrick Willis made himself a household name with his stellar play, having led the NFL in tackles in two of his three seasons. As the 11th-overall selection in the 2007 NFL Draft, Willis made an im­mediate impact as a rookie, earning All-Pro, Pro Bowl and NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. He kept the accolades flowing by earning Pro Bowl recognition in 2008 and 2009 after leading the team in tackles for a third straight year. Willis led the NFL in tackles and set career highs in sacks and INTs in 2009, on his way to earning a second All-Pro honor. In 48 starts, Willis has tallied 10-or-more tackles in 36 games and 20-or-more stops in 4 contests.

TRANSACTIONS:
Originally the first of two 1st-round (11th pick overall) draft choices by SF in 2007.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS:
•A three-time Pro Bowl selection (2007-09), was the only rookie to earn All- Pro honors in 2007 as he was named the AP Defensive Rookie of the Year. He became first 49ers defensive rookie to make the Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro since CB Ronnie Lott in 1981. He joined CB Bruce Taylor (1970), DT Dana Stubblefield (1993) and DT Bryant Young (1994) as 49ers who have won the Defensive Rookie of the Year award.
•Was named Defensive Rookie of the Month for October 2007 after totaling 43 tackles, and for December after amassing 53 stops, 3 sacks, 1 FF and 1 PD.
•Was one of three NFL rookies (49ers T Joe Staley and Browns T Joe Thomas) in 2007 to line up for every single snap.
•According to statistics compiled by Elias Sports Bureau, his 174 total tackles in 2007 led the NFL by more than 30 tackles, his 141 stops in 2008 ranked 2nd (behind Browns D’Qwell Jackson’s 154 tackles) and his 152 tackles in 2009 ranked 1st.
•Became the first 49er since S Ronnie Lott to be selected to the Pro Bowl in each of his first three seasons.

2009:
•Earned Pro Bowl honors for the third consecutive season and All-Pro honors for the second time in his career after leading the team in tackles (173) and TFLs (13). According to statistics compiled by the Elias Sports Bureau, he led the NFL in stops (152), marking the second time in his career he has ac­complished this feat (2007 – 174 tackles).
•Ranked t-2nd in the NFL among linebackers with 3 INTs.
•Posted a career-high 4.0 sacks.
•Registered his 2nd career INT at Arz. (9/13). Also had 14 tackles to go along with 2 PDs and 2 TFLs.
•Recorded 2nd career INT return for a TD, returning a QB Kyle Boller pass 23 yds. for a score, while posting a career-high 2.5 sacks to go along with 11 tackles vs. StL (10/4). He became the first player in franchise history, and just the third player in the NFL since the sack became an official statistic in 1982, to tally at least 2.5 sacks and an INT return for a TD in the same game. •Posted 13 tackles and 2 FFs vs. Atl. (10/11), marking the first time a 49ers player forced 2 fumbles in a game since 1998.
•Registered 13 tackles along with a half sack (QB David Garrard) vs. Jax. (11/29).
•Finished with a season-high 16 tackles at Sea. (12/6).
•Sacked QB Kurt Warner and registered a FF vs. Arz. (12/14).
•Registered an INT, 12 tackles and a PD vs. Det. (12/27).

2008:
•Led the team with 185 tackles as he earned Pro Bowl honors for second consecutive season.
•At Sea. (9/14), recorded first career INT, returning a QB Matt Hasselbeck pass for an 86-yd. TD, which is the longest INT return by a 49ers linebacker in team history. The previous best was a 56-yd. TD return by LB John John­son at NYG (9/6/92).
•Posted 13 tackles, 2 PDs, and 1 FR at NO (9/28). His FR occurred at the 49ers 3-yd. line to prevent a Saints score.
•Tallied 4th career 20-plus tackle game after finishing with a team-high 22 stops vs. NE (10/6), which also included a sack.
•Registered 16 tackles, 1 FF and 1 PD at Buf. (11/30).
•Tallied 16 tackles, which included 2 key stops on Rams final drive to pre­serve the 17-16 come-from-behind victory at StL (12/24).

2007:
•Earned starting role in training camp and totaled 226 tackles, 4 sacks, 2 FFs, 1 FR and 6 PDs. Received numerous accolades, including Defensive Rookie of the Year, All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors.
•Led defense with 15 tackles to go along with 1 FF in season-opener vs. Arz. (9/10) and was named Diet Pepsi Rookie of the Week.
•Recorded a franchise-record 21 tackles to go along with a half sack at Arz. (11/25). In a defining moment, ran down WR Sean Morey from behind in OT to prevent him from scoring game-winning TD after a 62-yd. gain. Was named the GMC Defensive Player of the Week and the Diet Pepsi Rookie of the Week for his efforts.
•Posted 20 tackles at Car. (12/2), marking second consecutive game in which he tallied 20 tackles-or-more.
•Registered 10 tackles and 1 FR vs. Min. (12/9), helping the defense hold NFL’s then-leading rusher RB Adrian Peterson to 3 yds. on 14 carries.
•Totaled 20 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 FF and 1 PD vs. TB (12/23), and was named GMC Defensive Player of the Week. It marked his first career multi-sack game.
•Closed out season at Cle. (12/30) with 16 tackles and 1 sack.

COLLEGE:
•Saw action in 45 games with 22 starts, totaling 355 tackles, 11 sacks, 5 FFs and 1 INT during career at Mississippi. Became first Ole Miss player to lead SEC in tackles (128 in 2005 and 137 in 2006) since Abdul Jackson posted 139 in 1994. His 137 tackles ranked 7th on school’s season-record list. Named Butkus Award winner in 2006, becoming first player in school history to earn award. Named first-team All-SEC and SEC Defensive Player of the Year by Associated Press and league’s coaches as a senior after starting 12 games and posting 137 tackles, 3 sacks, 2 FFs, 1 FR and 7 PDs. Tallied at least 10 tackles in 11 contests. Earned South Team Defensive MVP honors at 2007 Senior Bowl, leading all players with 11 stops to go along with 1 FF. Named first-team All-SEC as a junior, leading team with 128 tackles to go along with 3 sacks, 1 INT and 4 PDs.

PERSONAL:
•Attended Central (Bruceton, TN) HS, where he earned Class “A” Mr. Football honors and was a two-time All-State choice, helping lead team to 2001 and 2002 Regional Championship and State Quarterfinals.
•Totaled 494 tackles, 23 sacks and 13 INTs (6 returned for TDs) on defense, while tallying 276 carries for 2,486 yds. with 39 TDs and 51 catches for 946 yds. with 17 TDs on offense.
•Also earned 4 letters in basketball and 3 in baseball, garnering all-district in each sport.
•Born Patrick L. Willis (1/25/85) in Bruceton, TN.
•Earned degree in criminal justice.

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