Cross said the LT wasn't the 1st big, fast, smat LB the Giants had. He played the Gaitns int he 70's and cited both Van Pelt and Carson as being outstanding players. He also added that 57 is way too young, and that it's part of the life of what professional football players have chosen. He said that he's lost several former teammates before their time too.
What a sad day. Brad Van Pelt, Brian Kelly, and Gary Jeter were the first Giants I can remember. I always thought it was sad that Van Pelt was not part of the '86 team. RIP and may God Bless you and your family in this difficult time.
I have been watching alot of games from 1977 ,78,79 recently and he was all over the field .Rip .I won a contest in 1982 to have lunch with the crunch bunch ( LT,harry ,kelly and van pelt) but it got cancelled because we got hit with a huge snowstorm in ny .I was so upset but they sent me a crunch bunch poster and some autographed pictures .He was at the carolina game i saw him on the sidelines with harry carson .
Brad Van Pelt Jr. was a heck of a dynamic player at CSU. We used to go to quite a few games of his at Ft. Collins. Does anybody know what happened to him? is he still in the NFL. Signed with the Broncos I think and then went somewhere else I think.
If you discount long term steroid or other drug use, these guys put their bodies through brutality we could never imagine...Oft times after retirement, they let their bodies go...You're correct, it happens far too often...Btw, that is not to say that BVP didn't work out or anything
I am just shocked - I had the privilge of standing next to Brad last year at training camp and watching one of the indoor practices (in the Gym) with him from the balcony - a great guy and one of my all time favorites ad I idolized him as a kid. Just sad and pray for the family.
He was my fathers favorite player and I was named after him.
I was a Giants fan from the moment I was born and when anyone asks how I got the name Brad, I am always proud to say how. I had the pleasure of meeting him for the first time before the Jets/Giants preseason game last year. We took a ton of pictures and he was so impressed that I was named after him that he asked us to tailgate with him. What a great day and I had actually planned on meeting up with him again and have him sign the picture.
He will be missed and I know this is a sad day for all the Giants fans out there. RIP Brad, I am glad to meet you and am proud to be named after you.
Much too young. RIP to my first favorite player on the Giants.
It was easy to like him for me because we shared the same first name. For a young kid who didn't know much about football at the time, that was as good a reason as any to like a player. It also helped that he was a terrific Linebacker. When I was a kid, I found a #10 Giants shirt at the Sears in Rochester. I wore it constantly. It was my most prized possession.
Like a lot here, he was my first favorite player too. My dad likened him to Sam Huff because of his tenacious motor and excellent skills as a LB. During those tough years in the 70's, he was one of the few shining lights on the team.
Plaid called me up to let me know Brad Van Pelt had died, and he sounded so sad because not only was he Plaid's favorite player, but he was our father's favorite player, which made him miss our father, who passed away almost exactly 2 years ago. The first person he wanted to call was our father to tell him Van Pelt was gone, but he couldn't so he called me instead.
Thank you Brad Van Pelt for the wonderful memories of watching you play on the TV with our father so many years ago. God bless.
A great DB in College ... but too slow to cover the speedster wide outs in the NFL ... and too small to be a LB ... since you can't get faster ... he worked his butt off to get stronger ... and his days as a LB here were first rate ...
Great player making his impact in the NFL with heart and hard work ... an NFL poster child ...
He was not too small to be a LB in fact he was just too damn big to be an NFL safety. He was 6-5 240lbs & added weight as he aged. He was Urlacher before Urlacher was born & that was part of the problem as the Giant's weren't sure where he belonged & then he settled in at OLB.
Anyone remember when he tackled the Philly TE who was in front of him with one hand? He just reached out in front of him & pulled the TE back off his feet.
A personal note of memory and thanks. My seats were right behind his family's seats in section 129. His brother (Rob?), drove to the game each week from Michigan. He took my son's Giants hat and brought it to Brad after the game. At the next home game he handed it back to him signed. Big deal? Probably not but a positive memory that lasts.
IMO, this harkens back to the Sam Huff complaint last week about the NFLPA not taking proper care of the old-timers who built this league. There are extra health risks in being an ex-pro fooball player.
the best i have ever seen at holding up the TE and stringing the play out to prevent the RB from turning the corner
it was BVP that allowed LT to develop that play where he chased down the runner by going BEHIND the offensive line and across the field--something that no other LBer other than LT has ever done regularly
Simply awful news. I wore his jersey as a lad. I was BVP on the sand lots in pick up games. I revered those LBs as if they were on Rushmore. Condolences to the Van Pelt family. its appropriate that Harry lead the reflections.....
How playing in the NFL impacts some of these guys later in life. That's why I'm stunned when I see someone like Teddy Brushchi come back after a stroke, or Dan Morgan trying to come back this year. At some point you just gotta hang 'em up. I understand the warrior mentality, and the love of the game, but honestly fuck the game, fuck being a warrior. Some guys need to worry about preserving their bodies. Or in the case of concussions, their minds.
This is a stretch, but I'm being serious..If I were Ben Roethlisberger, I'd have extensive tests done this offseason to evaluate whats going on with my body..the guy had a very very serious, nearly fatal motorcycle crash, and if I remember correctly has suffered a few concussions since. I'd be talking to the best doctors I could find with the possibility of retirement in my mind. Only 26, but he has a ton of money and two rings. I'd at least get it looked at, and I'd be ready to walk away.
when the giants played the Pack in 1980 in Milwaukee. He was a gentleman and of course a great giant lb when there was not much else on that team. always felt bad he couldn't stay longer after the turn around. I still have my #10 home jersey which i bought as his number. somehow always thought #10 belonged to him more than Tarkenton and even Eli. Brian Kelly, Danny Lloyd Harry Carson and Brad van Pelt were a pretty good lb group although they probably only played together for a year. But whatever.
My consolation to the Van Pelt family and the giant family
to Brad's family, and the Giants football family. He was simply my all-time favorite Giant. And because the team was so terrible during most of the seasons that he played on it, his excellent play was never fully appreciated. He was a stunning athlete. What Brad represented to guys my age was hope. Along with Harry-that's how we kept it together. And now this sad news. RIP-BVP.
was one of my favorites, a classy guy, and never
lost his responsibility on the field. Whoever above said that teams could never run outside BVP had it right. He was big (think almost Ted H Stork like), tall, strong, and pretty mobile and good at shedding blocks.
I was born in 1978, and don't remember anything NFL-related before Super Bowl XX (Bears-Pats). But being that my name is Brad, the first Giants jersey my parents ever got me (not a real jersey, mind you, but a fake kids jersey) was a Brad Van Pelt jersey.
Of course, since I didn't know who Van Pelt was, as well as the fact that Simms was my favorite player...I tried to color in the zero with a crayon.
In an era where so many Giants' decisions went bad, he was one decision that paid off. There were concerns of whether he would try pro baseball, whether he could make the conversion from monsterback or whatever Michigan called their safety to linebacker, but after a couple of years the light came on and in an era where so much was wrong he, Carson, Kelley, and later Dan Lloyd were a sense of pride for all true Giant fans, the idea the Giants could have a strength, a place on their football team where few teams had a match, was an oasis in the Giants' sea of instability. Van Pelt was as an athlete all we could hope to be, tall athletic seemingly able to make plays at will...I am deeply saddened at his passing and my condolences to his family :(
Wow... this is so unfortunate... BVP gone, say it ain't so...
I met Brad once and he was a true gentleman and VERY down to earth.... Just a great person, player and athlete.
BUT, When we drafted him I was skeptical as he looked like a west coast surfer dude... How's he gonna be a newyawker ?? And what's the deal with him petitioning the league to wear the non-LB number 10... Damn he must be a selfish, stuck up snob... BOY WAS I WRONG.... he was the best athlete on the team until (the inhuman) Taylor arrived on the scene. I think he was drafted as a baseball pitcher too... He worked hard, played harder and just made those around him play better. He and Harry were my two favorite Giants then and the best players on the team since Joe Morrison played. I hated it when we traded him even though we got an EXCELLENT player for him, Tony Galbrath, who was a major contributor for the boys in blue for several years..
This is very sad and I send my condolences to his family, friends and for all of US in the Blue family...
BVP was a true role model and today's players could learn a lot from the way BVP played and lived his life. God Speed..
you and John Mendenhall were my two favorite Giants during those lean years. A great athlete, with a ton of range and an unorthodox style of play. Too bad that he missed playing with his (IMO) alter ego, Ted Hendricks, by one season. Think about the character it takes to play at such a high level on such a lousy team for so many years. You had it Brad, as did many of your Giants' defensive teammates (Gregory, Kelley, Lockhart, Mendenhall.) RIP and may God be with you.
RIP Brad.. thanks for the Memories... I'll alway remember being at the game and the Giants moving Van Pelt out wide to beat on Harold Carmichael.. every time he moved out there, the Giants Stadium crowd would go nuts
But from about 1979 on, I didn't think that those teams that he was on were so bad. True, they didn't win many games. But their defense was so good, that W/L didn't matter so much. I got entranced by the joy of watching a defense perform that had NO help (in the form of time of possession or scoring) from it's offense, and yet which turned "three and out" into an art and a science and a fulfilled expectation. And BVP was the funnest to watch of all the players on that tremendous defense.
What sad news.Muddy-I recall the day he was drafted.I remember reading an article on his being drafted as I rode a train with a buddy of mine to catch a Marx brothers flick at a theater in Manhattan.There was one season in the mid-70's when I never saw a back get around his corner.If he had been a Steeler or a Cowboy he'd be in the HOF.
I coach my son's youth football team in a community called Clifton Park, NY. My Assistant Coach had ties with Brad and asked Brad if he would come to one of our games and talk to the kids. We were very excited when he said that he would.
The day of the game comes and I get a call from my Assistant Coach saying that something has come up and Brad couldn't make it. I was kind of bummed about it but figured he had something more important he had to do and hoped that maybe he could come another time. An hour later my Assistant Coach called and said that Brad was able to rework his schedule and was going to come. He had said that he was traveling from about 90 miles away so he may be late.
Well, when I got to the field, there is Brad Van Pelt, looking very young for a guy who hasn't played football in 21 years. He was very easy going and extremely pleasant. I was so psyched that a former great LB for my favorite team would take time out of his schedule to talk to a bunch of coaches and
players he had never met before.
I introduced him to the team. He started off by telling of his youth and the love of all sports. His high school years of being a 3 sport star. How he played multiple sports in college at Michigan State. He mentioned the fact of being drafted by both the St. Louis Cardinals Baseball team and the New York Giants. He said that he was glad he joined the Giants but wasn't sure of living in New York. The talked about the best game he played right after his father's death. He mentioned that the Giants are the greatest organization in sports and how close he was to Well Mara.
He then spent some time answering questions from the kids and the coaches.
After, he signed everything and anything, including a " GIANTS" replica helmet that I had brought. It looks great in my Giants Room. He came to midfield and performed the coin toss and shook hands with the league president, game officials, coaches and captains from both teams. The refs could not get over the fact that one of their childhood heroes would spend time to come to a youth football game.
To top it off he actually stayed and watched the first half in the bleachers with the families of my players.
In a day where pro athletes are taking performance enhancing drugs, or lying about taking them, turning down $25 Million contracts ( manny ) or bringing firearms into a night club, it is people like Brad Van Pelt that give us hope and
provide a glimpse of what we wish our sports heroes to aspire to.
Attached is a link to our league web site. In the photo gallery there are many pictures of Brad from that day.
I will never forget the experience and hope that the people that were there that day won't either.
when he was coming into the draft. He was a hybrid S-LB type with good ball hawking skills. The pros were projecting him as a LB. I smiled and thought "he sounds like the next Brad Van Pelt."
RIP #10. Thanks for the effort and the big plays and being a positive when so much surrounding my favorite team was negative. I'm proud to say I still have my "Crunch Bunch" poster encased in glass and hanging up on my wall. You will not be forgotten.
He was a professional with an amateur spirit. Lost. Almost completely lost in our society today. He went out of his way because he knew that he wasn't more important than the sport. And in knowing that, he transcended the sport and touched hearts.
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