clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Vol Villains Quarterfinals: Danny Wuerffel vs. Charles Woodson

New, comments

Round One: Wuerffel def. Tebow 58-42%; Woodson def. Greene 76-24%

For Vol fans, the 1996 and 1997 Heisman Trophy winners are the two most villainous players in the modern era. Though they hurt the Vols in two very different ways, Peyton Manning is the common link: Wuerffel was the only quarterback to outplay Manning head-to-head, and did it twice in 1995 and 1996. Then Woodson took the highest individual honor that rightly belonged to our hero in 1997...in part because the media and the voters got bored with the clean cut QB from the SEC storyline after Wuerffel.

Some percentage of the angst with Wuerffel gets deflected back on Spurrier. Some percentage of the angst with Woodson gets deflected back on ESPN. And though Woodson never played against the Vols, his longevity in the NFL - especially in comparison to Wuerffel - has helped keep him fresh in our minds. So does the second weekend of every December.

I'm not sure which one was worse: Woodson's brash demeanor, suitable for a player trying to overcompensate for his inability to affect the outcome of a football game the way the leading passer in SEC history could...or Wuerffel's quiet way, turning to the heavens in prayer with every touchdown pass and making me wonder if we could possibly be serving different gods.

Wuerffel was so good against the Vols he forced you to respect him even if you didn't want to. And because Woodson never got the opportunity to actually go against the Vols, it remains nearly impossible for Tennessee fans to respect him. Which one makes the better villain?