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Extremeskins

The burden of proof, nerve conduction, and Wikipedia


chipper803

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Something occurred to me upon the fourteenth or fifteenth consecutive viewing of Taylor21_Int_4_TD's recent vid:

Sean Taylor's freakish athleticism is (obviously) a major reason why he can do the things he does on the football field. But the more I watch highlight videos, the more I start to think that a large part of it is his reflexes. In some of his highlights, his reaction time seems almost impossibly small. Inevitably, I'm going to be accused of fan-biased perception, but if you don't buy it, just watch a few real-time ST highlights. Now, human reaction time generally ranges from 300 millisec on the slow end, to a physiologic limit of around 145-150 milliseconds. Most young people fall between 200-250 ms. A reaction time of 170 ms would be excellent. One famous athlete with historically good reaction time was Muhammad Ali. He was tested in the low 150's. Not surprisingly, many believe that this was his most vital natural gift. This was important, not for the obvious reason (dodging punches), but because it allowed Ali to respond in mid-punch (his punches) to which way his opponent's head was moving. This is why Ali was able to connect those legendary combinations.

I'm not suggesting that Taylor would test in that range, but (for example), in Taylor21_Int_4_TD's video, at 2:20 is the clip from Taylor's rookie season where he strips Julius Jones with an outstretched hand. As the ball is flipping out, Taylor almost catches it. Also, in the Randy Moss clip that everyone uses (vs Minn) where Taylor and Moss go up for a jump ball in the deep middle...he intentionally deflects it second time on the way down before the ball has dropped another 18" from the first tip. That's sick. And there is a clip of his pick in the BCS championship game vs Ohio State where he deflects the ball at full extention, and intercepts it on the way down. That doesn't sound impressive, but the clip must be seen. The ball is falling away and falling fast, and somehow he gets it.

Anyway, the point of all this, aside from talking about Sean Taylor's relentless awesomeness, is that reaction time is grossly underrated in sports. Most NFL skill position athletes can reach a top speed in excess of 10 yds/sec. The difference of 1/60th (16.6 ms) of a sec in reaction time, then equates to 6". 2/60ths of a sec = approx. 1 foot. That's like having 1 foot added to your wingspan (if we're talking about range). When so many plays are literally (not figuratively) decided by a matter of inches, this seems pretty influential.

On an aside, Sean Taylor has a Wikipedia entry. And that Wikipedia entry has a highlight video in the links section. That is B.A.

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I wonder how all of these skills will help him when he is wearing an orange jumpsuit courtesy of the state of Florida?

:(

Uh, you need crazy fast reflexes to avoid male rape in the communal showers. I mean, I wouldn't know personally, but I hear that's the case.

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ST is in position to make plays that other safeties would never even dream of making. A lot of the interceptions he dropped this past season were balls that other safeties might not have gotten their hands on. He is an amazing talent.

I wonder how all of these skills will help him when he is wearing an orange jumpsuit courtesy of the state of Florida?

:(

I don't know why you guys are so deadset on your opinion that he is going to jail...no way he serves time.

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One famous athlete with historically good reaction time was Muhammad Ali. He was tested in the low 150's. Not surprisingly, many believe that this was his most vital natural gift. This was important, not for the obvious reason (dodging punches), but because it allowed Ali to respond in mid-punch (his punches) to which way his opponent's head was moving. This is why Ali was able to connect those legendary combinations.

Interesting, and explains a lot. If you watch the Ali - Foreman fight, Ali hits Foreman 8 times in 3 seconds, with perfectly placed power shots, while Foreman is moving and falling. Astounding.

I wonder what Darrell Green's reaction time would have measured? I always thought he had the fastest reflexes I ever saw.

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I also notice Taylor's reaction time. When he recovered those fumbles versus Philly and Tampa, he had the ball in his hands and was ten yards down the field before anybody else realized he had it. That dude is NASTY. I'm glad he is on our side.

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