Mel Blount talks about the rule that was named after him on the 'All Things Covered' podcast
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Mel Blount is one of the most iconic Steelers players of all-time. He's a four-time Super Bowl champion, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and one of the best cornerbacks to ever play the game. There's truly no one else out there that played the position like him. He was one of the first big cornerbacks in the league, as he stood at substantial 6-foot-3, and he had strength and speed to go along with his height. Blount was a nightmare for wide receivers to go up against, as his jam at the line of scrimmage was lethal.
Blount was so good at jamming receivers that the league named a rule after him. In 1978, the league prohibited the contact between defensive backs and receivers past five yards.
Blount was recently on CBS Sports "All Things Covered" podcast with former Steelers cornerback Bryant McFadden and Patrick Peterson, who signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Vikings yesterday, to talk about the rule named after him and several other topics.
"When that happened, to me I took it as an insult," Blount said. "As if, OK, you're putting this rule in because you think that's the only way I can play and that it's going to slow me down. You know, we were so dominant. Not just me and the secondary, but Joe Greene and L.C. Greenwood, Jack Lambert, all those guys. We were so dominant until they were trying to find ways to slow our defense down. They even took the head slap out, and L.C. was good at that. They even had rules like the 'Mel Blount Rule' was one. And then our defensive line was so dominant with Ernie Holmes and Joe Greene and L.C. Greenwood. These guys were just tremendous athletes. And so, I didn't really like the rule, but I wanted to prove to them that there was another gear that I could go to, another level. So, we were able to go on and win two more Super Bowls after they changed that rule."
Blount was also asked during the podcast if he could play in today's game with how the way games are called.
"Man look, I'm telling you. If I was playing in today's game and they're playing 16 games and they're throwing the ball what, 80 percent of the time? I'm coming out of every game, and I'm not lying, with at least two interceptions, if not more," Blount said. "I'm gonna be a ball hawk. Now check this out, I had 11 interceptions in 1975, 11 interceptions. And on average, they was throwing the ball 13 times a game. They were running the ball, So, when they put that ball in the air, man this is my opportunity."
Blount won Defensive Player of the Year in 1975 when he had 11 interceptions in just 14 games. The league didn't start playing 16 games in a season until 1978.
You can listen to the entire Blount interview with McFadden and Peterson in the clip below.