Going into the ’88 draft, Sterling Sharpe, out of the University of South Carolina, was tapped as the premier receiver of the draft class. While at South Carolina, Sharpe put up solid numbers — 25 touchdowns, 163 catches and 2,444 yards.
With the seventh pick overall, the Packers drafted the promising receiver, hoping he would become the go-to guy in Green Bay’s offensive scheme. Sharpe stood 5’11’, with 202 pounds of pure muscle, and was timed with 4.44 speed in the 40-yard dash.
During his first season with the Packers, Sharpe set the club record for most receptions by a rookie, with 55 catches. Sharpe’s work ethic and determination on the practice field impressed his coaches and teammates. By the end of the year, he would become a vocal leader on the team.
Although he seldom talked to the media during his seven years with the Green Bay Packers (1988-94) Sterling Sharpe’s play on the field spoke volumes.
He set many receiving records that still stand, both as NFL and Packers records. He still holds the Packers record for most pass receptions in a career (595); most pass receptions in one season (112 in 1993); most receptions as a rookie (55 in 1988); and most consecutive games catching a pass (103, 1988-94).
Sharpe caught 108 passes for the Green Bay Packers in 1992, breaking the all-time mark of 106 for a single season set by Art Monk of the Washington Redskins in 1984. Then he came back the next season (1993) with 112 catches and broke his NFL record of the previous year. His 220 catches over those two seasons were 23 more than any NFL player has ever had in consecutive seasons.
While his total catches fell off somewhat in his final season (94 catches), his touchdown receptions (18) from quarterback Brett Favre were the most during his Packers tenure.
After seven seasons with the Packers, Sharpe retired following the 1994 season when he was diagnosed with an abnormal amount of laxity (movement) between his first and second cervical vertebrae.
To see Sterling Sharpe’s personal website, click here.