Von Miller

Von Miller

refer to caption

Miller in 2011
No. 58Denver Broncos
Position: Outside linebacker
Personal information
Date of birth: (1989-03-26) March 26, 1989
Place of birth: Dallas, Texas
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight: 250 lb (113 kg)
Career information
High school: DeSoto (TX)
College: Texas A&M
NFL draft: 2011 / Round: 1 / Pick: 2
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2015
Tackles: 260
Quarterback sacks: 60.0
Forced fumbles: 16
Interceptions: 1
Touchdowns: 2
Player stats at NFL.com

Vonnie B'Vsean "Von" Miller Jr.[1] (born March 26, 1989) is a professional American football outside linebacker for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). Miller played college football at Texas A&M, where he earned consensus All-American honors and was awarded the Butkus Award as the most outstanding college linebacker in the nation. He was drafted by the Broncos second overall in the 2011 NFL Draft. He is a four-time Pro Bowl selection, receiving second-team All-Pro honors as a rookie and first-team All-Pro in his second season. At the conclusion of the 2015 NFL season, Miller was named Super Bowl MVP after the Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

High school career

Miller attended DeSoto High School in DeSoto, Texas, where he played for the DeSoto Eagles high school football team and ran track. In his junior year he recorded 37 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 7 sacks and 12 quarterback hurries. As a senior, he was named the District 8-5A Defensive MVP after making 76 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 6 sacks.[2] He played with future Aggie teammate Cyrus Gray.[3]

In track & field, Miller competed in events such as the 110m hurdles (PR of 14.38 s), triple jump (top-jump of 12.65 m) or even javelin throw (top-throw of 37.24 m).[4]

Considered a four-star recruit by Rivals.com, Miller was listed as the No. 15 weakside defensive end in the nation in 2007.[5] He chose Texas A&M over offers from Florida, Ole Miss, Oklahoma and Texas Tech.

College career

Miller attended Texas A&M University, where he played for the Texas A&M Aggies football team from 2007 to 2010. As a freshman at defensive end in 2007, he was named Freshman All-Big 12 by The Sporting News after posting 22 tackles, including 10 solo stops. He recorded two sacks, four tackles for loss, and a forced fumble. He played in a 4-2-5 defense. He weighed 220 pounds during his freshman year.

In the spring of 2008, newly hired head coach Mike Sherman was discouraged by Miller's habits of skipping class and failing to produce during practice. Sherman decided to suspend Miller for that spring. Disappointed, Miller considered transferring, but upon his father's insistence, stayed. Miller then adopted a more serious attitude.[6]

As a sophomore in 2008, Miller played at weakside linebacker under Joe Kines' 4–3 defense. He saw action in all 12 games, making 44 tackles, including 25 solo stops, and leading the team with 3.5 sacks. He made 7.5 tackles for loss, forced a pair of fumbles, and recovered two more. His role was more confined to pass coverage, as opposed to rushing the quarterback, thus he wasn't able to showcase his pass-rushing abilities. In the final seven Big 12 games, he compiled just eight tackles.[7]

As a junior in 2009, Miller adopted the role of the jack position, a defensive end/linebacker hybrid, which allowed him to utilize his pass rushing abilities. He enjoyed a breakout season for the Aggies, leading the nation in sacks with 17 and ranking fourth in the nation with 21 tackles for loss.[8] For his efforts, Von Miller was named first team All Big-12 at defensive end and was named a first-team All-American by Sporting News and Sports Illustrated.[9][10] He became the first Aggie to be named a first team All-American since Jason Webster in 1999.[11] Then-Aggies defensive coordinator Joe Kines compared Miller to the late Derrick Thomas.[12] Miller then studied and watched film of Thomas to familiarize himself with his game.

In 2010, Miller switched to playing as a 3–4 outside linebacker under Tim DeRuyter's defense. Early in the season, Miller suffered a high ankle sprain that held him back for the first six games.[8] He posted 10.5 sacks and 17.5 tackles for loss.[13] Again he made first-team All-Big 12 honors[14] and won the Butkus Award as the nation's top linebacker.[15] He was also named a consensus first-team All-American.[16] He received first team All-American honors from Walter Camp, Scout.com, Pro Football Weekly,[17] ESPN.com[18] and the Associated Press.[19]

Professional career


Miller, who likely would have been a second round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft had he passed on his senior season,[20] entered the 2011 NFL Draft regarded as one of the best 3–4 outside linebackers available.[21] He was projected to be a top 5 pick by notable draft evaluators.[22][23][24]

At the 2011 Senior Bowl, Miller was the Defensive MVP.[25]

Among linebackers at the 2011 NFL Combine, Miller ranked 2nd in the 40-yard dash, 3rd in the vertical jump, 1st in the broad jump, 3rd in the 20-yard shuttle, T-1st in the 3-cone drill, and 1st in the 60-yard shuttle. His 11.15-second 60-yard shuttle broke the combine linebacker record. At the Texas A&M Pro Day in March 2011, Miller ran a 4.49 40-yard dash.[26]

Pre-draft measurables
Ht WtArm lengthHand size 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BPWonderlic
6 ft 3 in 246 lb33½ in in 4.53 s 1.57 s 2.57 s 4.06 s 6.7 s 37 in 10 ft 6 in 21 repsN/A
All values from NFL Combine[27][28]

In March 2011, Miller was selected to represent top flight rookies in the NFL Labor Union talks.[29] He was persuaded by LaDainian Tomlinson to join the lawsuit.[6]

In March 2011, Dave Razzano, a former NFL scout with 20 years of experience, compared Miller to Vernon Gholston. Gholston was drafted sixth overall by the New York Jets in 2008, but failed to record a sack in 42 games, and was later released. In regards to Miller, Razzano stated: "In looking at Big-12 tape, he does not have a motor. He doesn't chase hard. They run at him, and he doesn't fight off blockers. When he gets sacks, a lot of times he's not getting blocked. He's a one-move guy."[30] During the Texas A&M Pro Day, however, one scout compared him to Hall of Famer Derrick Thomas, while Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer compared him to Cardinals linebacker Joey Porter.[31] NFL Network Analyst Mike Mayock, who rated Miller as the second-best player in the draft, stated that Miller reminds him of a smaller version of DeMarcus Ware.[32] Miller's then-personal trainer, Dan Brandenburg, who also worked with first round picks Clay Matthews III and Sean Weatherspoon, stated Miller is the best athlete of all three.[6]

Denver Broncos

Miller signing autographs for U.S. troops at Transit Center at Manas, Kyrgyzstan, in March 2013

Miller was drafted by the Denver Broncos second overall in the 2011 NFL Draft. He was the highest selected linebacker since LaVar Arrington went No. 2 to the Washington Redskins in 2000. He also become the Aggies' highest draft pick since Quentin Coryatt, who was selected second overall in 1992.[33] The selection of Miller surprised certain experts. Denver was switching from a 3-4 defense to a 4-3 defense, a defense which seemed counter-intuitive to Miller's strengths. Former Broncos quarterback John Elway, who is also the executive vice president of the franchise, said Miller is "a type of guy that comes around every 10 years".[34]

On July 28, 2011, Miller officially signed with the Denver Broncos. He wears #58 in honor of his favorite football player, the late former Chiefs Hall of Fame linebacker Derrick Thomas.[35]

2011 season

On September 11, 2011, in his first career play from scrimmage, Miller forced a fumble. On September 18, 2011, he had his first sack on Andy Dalton when the Broncos played the Cincinnati Bengals.[36]

Miller was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance against the New York Jets.[37]

Miller was selected to the 2012 Pro Bowl[38] and was named AP Defensive Rookie of the Year.[39] Overall, in 907 snaps, he recorded 11.5 sacks, 19 quarterback hits and 29 quarterback hurries.[40] He was fined three times during season.[41]

2012 season

Miller got off to a quick start in his sophomore season, registering 10 sacks in 9 games. In this period, he also recorded 30 quarterback hurries, more than he had during his entire 2011 campaign. Thanks to this tremendous start, he was considered an MVP candidate. On November 16, he was fined $21,000 for a hit on Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton in Week 10.[42] He received his second career AFC Defensive Player of the Week honor after recording three sacks and two forced fumbles against the San Diego Chargers the following week.[43] For his efforts during the month of November, he was awarded AFC Defensive Player of the Month. On December 26, 2012, he was announced the starting Outside Linebacker in the AFC division for the 2013 Pro Bowl.[44] Miller finished the season third in sacks with eighteen and a half, breaking a Denver Broncos record of seventeen previously held by Elvis Dumervil. He also capped off the 2012 season finishing second in voting for Defensive Player of the Year and being named first-team All-Pro.

In 2012, Miller teamed up with Ubisoft, makers of the video game The Hip Hop Dance Experience, to create his very own sack celebration dance called "The DeSoto Shuffle" that was inspired by the video game. Each time he performed the dance during a game, Ubisoft made a charitable donation to Von's Vision, a foundation devoted to providing eye care and glasses to underprivileged youth.[45]

Miller (third from right) was one of several NFL players who visited US Army soldiers in Afghanistan during the 2013 offseason.

2013 season

Prior to the 2013 season, NFL Network listed Miller as the 9th-ranked player in its NFL: The Top 100 Players of 2013 program.[46]

In July, 2013, ESPN reported that Miller had been suspended six games for violating league policy, pending appeal. He tweeted that he did "nothing wrong". In August 2013, he lost the appeal and was suspended for six games. The six game suspension arose after the NFL learned that he attempted to cheat a drug test. He became eligible to play on October 20, 2013, when the Broncos played the Indianapolis Colts.[47][48] On November 24, in a loss to the New England Patriots, he recovered a Stevan Ridley fumble and took it 60 yards for a touchdown. It was the second touchdown of his career. He did fairly well upon his return, but his season was ended prematurely when he tore his ACL on December 22, 2013 during a win on the road at the Houston Texans. Without him the Broncos reached Super Bowl XLVIII, but lost 43-8 to the Seattle Seahawks.[49]

2014 season

After recovering from his ACL injury, Miller looked to improve his play in his fourth season with the Broncos.[50] He did so with 14 sacks, 59 tackles and a forced fumble.

2015 season

On September 17, 2015, Miller became the third-fastest player in NFL history to reach 50 sacks career (58 games). The only ones to get there faster than him were Reggie White (40 games) and Derrick Thomas (54).[51]

During the AFC Championship game against the Patriots, he sacked Tom Brady 2.5 times, breaking a Broncos single-game playoff record.[52]

During the Super Bowl 50 victory over the Panthers, he recorded six tackles, 2.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and two quarterback hurries. Miller forced a fumble from Panthers quarterback Cam Newton late in the fourth quarter, helping the Broncos seal the victory. He was named Super Bowl MVP for his performance.[53]

NFL career statistics

Year Team Games Combine Tackles Total Tackles Assisted Tackles Sacks Forced Fumbles Interceptions Pass Defended
2011 DEN 15 64 50 14 11.5 2 0 4
2012 DEN 16 68 55 13 18.5 6 1 2
2013 DEN 9 34 27 7 5.0 3 0 1
2014 DEN 16 59 42 17 14.0 1 0 2
2015 DEN 16 35 30 5 11.0 4 0 1
Total Total 72 260 204 56 60.0 16 1 10

Reference: [54]

Personal life

Miller was born in Dallas, Texas, to parents Von and Gloria Miller. His parents, who were both athletes in high school and college, own a power supply business.[6] He has a younger brother Vinsynzie "Vins".[55]

Having minored in poultry science at Texas A&M, Miller operates his own farm, raising chickens.[56]

Legal issues

In August 2013, Miller was arrested on a failure to appear warrant for driving-related charges in October 2012.[57] Miller was arrested August 11, 2013 at a Colorado gun store when he tried to buy a gun and a background check revealed an outstanding arrest warrant for failing to appear in court on his previous traffic ticket.

In September 2013, Miller was cited for speeding and driving with a suspended license in Arapahoe County, Colorado.[58]


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  32. "news: Defensive players lead the way on list of top 32 prospects". NFL.com. Retrieved 2011-03-18.
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  37. Sportingnews.com
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