Mike Sherrard was a standout multiple sport athlete at Chico High School in Chico, California, excelling in football, baseball, basketball and track and field.
The speedster was a walk on at UCLA and after a few early injury related setbacks, became a starter by his sophomore season. He left school as the Bruins all-time leading receiver in both various single season and career statistics including a grand total of 124 receptions for nearly 2,000 yards and nine touchdowns.
The Dallas Cowboys chose Sherrard with the 18th overall pick in the 1986 NFL Draft.
After courageously battling through countless injuries in his NFL career which included playing for the Cowboys, 49ers, Giants and Broncos, Sherrard retired after the 1996 season with 257 receptions for nearly 4,000 yards and 22 touchdowns for his career.
Sherrard recently launched a startup company Score Celeb Stuff, which assists pro athletes and celebrities with the sale of items to fans and collectors with proceeds going to a charity of the athlete’s choice.
Tony Reid–Your 1987 Topps RC stated that you were the fastest wide receiver in the 1986 college draft.
What was it like to be considered the fastest guy in the draft?
Mike Sherrard-It was cool. I grew up running track. My mom ran in the Olympics. I was born in 1963. She ran in the 1964 Olympics. I was always a track person. I took track seriously. Speed was a big part of it. That’s how it is with any pro sport, being an athlete, being quick and being fast, along with hard work is what keeps you in the league. I always cherished my time on the track.
TR–You overcame a remarkable number of serious injuries throughout your career. Your 1991 Bowman card mentioned your Comeback Player of the Year Award. To come back, get back on the field, compete and eventually win that prestigious award was special. Can you encapsulate that time and winning that award?
MS– That meant a lot to me. My rookie year went well. Then I broke my leg in training camp the next year. Then I re-broke it about nine months later. Then I switched teams. The Niners were saying they had Bryson Taylor and that I should take the year off.
To come back, it’s tough being an injured player in sports because you are not with the fellas. You are not sharing the stories of the road trips and practice. You are on the sidelines doing your own thing with the physical therapist. It’s tough mentally. Playing pro sports was a dream of mine. I decided that if it was not going to happen it was not going to be because I didn’t try hard enough or wasn’t persistent enough. So, I stuck with it and thought that if I do my physical therapy and listened to the doctors and keep working and grinding like I worked and grinded to get to this point that things would work out. Thank God things worked out and I got to play another eight or nine years after my injuries.
TR-Your 1993 Pro Set Power mentioned the new coach Dan Reeves in New York looking for a speedy big play wide receiver, giving you the opportunity to be the go to primary target for Quarterback Phil Simms.
What was your experience in New York like for you?
MS– I loved New York. New York was a great experience for me. People hear about the fans there and they are hardcore sports fans and football fans. They love the Giants. My time with the Niners was awesome. I won a Super Bowl there and being from Northern California was great playing for the home team. I was behind Jerry Rice and John Taylor, so I wasn’t getting as much playing time as I would have liked. To go to a spot were Dan Reeves welcomed me with open arms and to play with Phil Simms, it was awesome. To be the number one guy on the Giants, even though we weren’t a passing team, when we passed the ball there was a good chance it was coming in my direction.
To open up the top more for Rodney Hampton and Dave Meggett and those guys to run the ball was fun. I appreciated the New York fans a lot. They are hardcore. They are hard on athletes but if you work hard and they know you are trying they embrace you. I really enjoyed my three years there.