Nick Collins Speaker Profile
Nick Collins Biography
Nick Collins was born August 16, 1983 and is a free safetywho plays for the Green Bay Packers of the NFL. He was born in Gainesville,Florida and has family in Cross City, FL.
Collins entered the NFL on April 23, 2005 when he wasselected in the second round (51st pick overall) of the 2005 NFL Draft by theGreen Bay Packers. Collins would become only the second Bethune-Cookman playerto make the Packers roster. Some draft experts felt that the Packers draftedCollins too high, referring to him as a developmental prospect who isvery athletic but very raw and questioning his ability to fully grasp anNFL-caliber defense.
Though he was listed as a cornerback in the draft prospectlist, Collins competed in Green Bay for the starting free safety job for the2005 season. Collins would have large shoes to fill on the Packers roster; in2004, the Packers free safety was Pro Bowl player Darren Sharper. At thebeginning of the 2004 offseason, Sharper left the team over contract issues,eventually signing with the Minnesota Vikings and having another Pro Bowlseason for 2005.
However, Collins showed the potential and ability thatprompted Packers GM Ted Thompson to select him so early in the draft. Hequickly became a physical and emotional presence on a defense which showedtremendous improvement after finishing 26th in overall yards allowed during the2004 season and in spite of the struggles the Packers faced in their firstlosing season since 1991. Collins recorded his first notable game on October30, 2005 against the Cincinnati Bengals. Collins had four total tackles and twopasses defended, including a crushing blow to star wide receiver Chad Johnsonthat forced him to drop a pass from quarterback Carson Palmer and a nearinterception of Palmer that Collins could have returned for a game-changingtouchdown.
Collins did record his first interception three weeks later,in a Monday night showdown with the Vikings on November 21. He also recorded athen season-high 11 tackles in the game (8 solo). The interception was anathletic catch which displayed both Collins' physical prowess and hisinstincts.
Collins finished the 2005 season as an unquestioned starterand defensive leader. His total season statistics: 84 tackles (63 solo), oneinterception, two forced fumbles and seven passes defended.
In 16 games played during the 2006 season, Collins totalseason statistics were as follows: 80 tackles (65 solo), 15 assists, 3interceptions and 2 forces fumbles. 2 of his interceptions came during a 26-7victory over the Chicago Bears on December 31, 2006.
In 2007, Collins started 13 of the Packers games and missed3 due to injury. During the season Collins total season statistics were asfollows: 46 tackles(40 solo), no interceptions, no forced fumbles and 5 passesdefended.
In 2008, Collins stepped up his game early in the seasonwith 5 interceptions with 3 returned for touchdowns along with 7 passesdefensed in his first 9 games of the season when the Packers secondary wasdepleted with injuries to starting corner Al Harris and strong safety AtariBigby. His performance earned him a spot in the 2008 Pro Bowl.
In 2009, Collins had another outstanding year, picking offsix passes.
Collins was selected to his second straight Pro Bowl in 2009behind former Packer Darren Sharper. He started the game for the NFC due toSharper's participation in Super Bowl XLIV.
On March 12, 2010, Collins signed a long-awaited 3 yearcontract with the Packers. His performance during the 2010 season earned him athird consecutive Pro Bowl selection.
On February 6, 2011, in Super Bowl XLV, Collins picked of aunderthrown Ben Roethlisberger pass in the 1st quarter & weaved his waythrough the Steelers offense & dove through two Steelers O-linemen into theendzone on a 37-yard interception return touchdown to give the Packers a 14-0lead as they went on to defeat Pittsburgh, 31-25.
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