August 9th, 2010 16:22 EST
Bill Maas, Former Defensive Tackle for the Kansas City Chiefs
Now that the NFL season has started with the Hall of Fame game Sunday basically kicking off the start of the 2010 season, the hard core football fan who has waited for this moment since the last seconds ticked off the clock with the last regular season game last year, they are now hitting their attics and pulling out their favorite NFL Team`s banners, washing their team`s jerseys, and dusty off the Bar-B-Ques getting ready for those big before game tailgating parties. Yes, ladies and gentleman the long awaited NFL season has finally arrived!
The Hall of Fame game last night set the stage for what should be another great season of football. The Cowboys looked good against the Bengals, but with any preseason game, the goal for any team is not to concentrate on just winning the game, but for the coaching staff to get a look at the players, any improvements to the offense and defense and to get their team ready for the upcoming season, so most of the time in the preseason games you are not going to see the first string players, but rather the rookies and other players.
The Hall of Fame game has more meaning to it than just the kickoff to the upcoming season, but is a reflection to the past players that are inducted into the NFL Football Hall of Fame. This year there were plenty of past greats that were inducted.
Some of the players that were part of the 2010 inductees include, Russ Grimm who played his college ball at the University of Pittsburgh and later played his NFL career with the Washington Redskins, Ricky Jackson who also played his college ball at the University of Pittsburgh and later was drafted by the New Orleans Saints where he played from 1981-1993 and then went to the San Francisco 49ERS where he played from 1994-1995. John Randle who played for the Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks, Dick LeBeau who played for the Detroit Lions, Floyd Little who played for the Denver Broncos, and Jerry Rice who played for the 49ERS, Raiders, Seahawks, and Broncos.
It is also a refection back in NFL history to a lot of good players that have played the game and left many lasting memories for us the fans. One particular player that I had the pleasure of interviewing recently is Bill Maas. Bill played his college football at the University of Pittsburgh and created a great reputation there for his tenacious play at Tackle. He is known for his great game in the 1980 Gator Bowl where he recorded a sack and blocked a punt in route to the Pittsburgh Panthers win over South Carolina.
Bill earned All-American honors in 1982 and played in the East-West Shrine Game then was selected as the fifth-overall selection in the 1984 NFL draft where he was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs. Bill continued his great play his first year as a Kansas City Chief and being their first-round draft choice as he also earned NFL Rookie of the year honors.
Bill Maas played for the Chiefs from 1984-1992 and played one-year with the Green Bay Packers in 1993. My interview with Bill is below:
1). Bill, at PITT, you played beside two NFL Hall of Famers that were inducted in the NFL Hall of Fame Sunday, Russ Grimm and Rickey Jackson. How big of thrill is this for you to have two of your teammates from PITT that you played with be inducted in the football Hall of Fame? "
My years at the University of Pittsburgh were incredible; it was some of the best talent ever assembled. Dan Marino, Mark May, Jimbo Covert, Bill Fralic, Russ Grimm, Jim Sweeney, Hugh Green, Rickey Jackson, Chris Doleman, Carlton Williamson. We didn`t win a national championship, but we all got together in Hawaii at the Pro bowl every year. " (Maas, 2010)
2). Bill, I watched you play many times when you were with the Kansas City Chiefs. What would you say was your best year you had playing for the Chiefs? "
I had some really good years but I think 86 may have been the best. "(Maas, 2010)
3). Bill, what was your biggest accomplishment you had playing in the National Football League? "
My rookie year, I was NFL rookie of the year , 86,87 went to Pro Bowl and was 1st team all NFL , but helping to get our team into the playoffs in 86,90,91,92,93 was the biggest accomplishment. " (Maas, 2010)
4). Bill, back when you played for the Kansas City Chiefs, (1984-1992), the Chiefs and my (Oakland, Los Angeles) Raiders had some of the most bitter rivalries in NFL history. It seemed you guys always beat my Raiders just about every time we played you. How was it to be part of and play in some of those games? And what were some of your best moments in those games?
The Raiders n Chiefs are a true rivalry. It was always more intense than other games especially after their super bowl victory. I envied what they had and always tried to take it out in my play. " (Mass, 2010)
5). Bill, now that you are retired from the NFL, what are you currently doing? "
I do some radio in Kansas City, cover the chiefs, and do post game, but I do commercial real estate on a day to day basis. " (Mass, 2010)
With the 2010 NFL season starting, what better way to kick it off than to do an interview with one of the best players that have ever played the game, Bill Maas.