He ran. He ran fast. He ran powerfully. He ran with grace. He ran like he knew he wouldn’t be around long.
Billy Sims lightning in a bottle. The first round pick of the Detroit Lions won the 1980 rookie of the year. He ran the power sweep better than anyone I have ever seen.
He was a showman. The high stepping, airplane (arms exteneded out to his sides) side shuffling touchdown celebrations electrified Lions fans.
sadly, he would play roughly four and a half years. A horrific knee injury in Minnesota would see the Lions legend into retirement three screws holding his knee together was the deal breaker.
Yet, it was almost tragically indicative of the way he played. Throwing his body over piles of defenders. Lowering his head and shoulders to take on would be tacklers. Not to mention the famous “karate kick” against the then Houston Oilers.
He came. He left an impression still felt in Detroit.
He ran. Oh my did he run.