Mike Pearson (gridiron football)

For other people named Mike Pearson, see Mike Pearson (disambiguation).
Mike Pearson
No. 72, 69
Position: Offensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1980-08-22) August 22, 1980
Place of birth: Tampa, Florida
Height: 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Weight: 297 lb (135 kg)
Career information
High school: Seffner (FL) Armwood
College: Florida
NFL Draft: 2002 / Round: 2 / Pick: 40
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played: 40
Games started: 33
Player stats at NFL.com
Career CFL statistics
Games played: 9
Games started: 9
Player stats at PFR

Michael Wayne Pearson (born August 22, 1980) is an American former college and professional football player who was an offensive tackle in the National Football League (NFL) and the Canadian Football League (CFL) for five seasons. Pearson played college football for the University of Florida, and earned consensus All-American honors. A second-round pick in the 2002 NFL Draft, he played professionally for the Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL and the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL.

Early years

Pearson was born in Tampa, Florida in 1980.[1] He attended Armwood High School in Seffner, Florida,[2] where he played high school football for the Armwood Hawks.[3]

College career

Pearson accepted an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida,[3] where he played for coach Steve Spurrier's Florida Gators football team from 1999 to 2001.[4] After being red-shirted in 1998, he was a three-year letterman for the Gators, and he received the Gators' James W. Kynes Award, recognizing him as the lineman who "best exemplified mental and physical toughness and iron-man determination."[4] He was also a two-time Southeastern Conference (SEC) Academic Honor Roll selection.[4] Pearson played in thirty-five games with thirty-three starts, including two bowl games: the 2001 Orange Bowl and the 2000 Sugar Bowl.[3] He was a first-team All-SEC selection in 2000 and 2001, and was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American in 2001.[4][5]

Pearson graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in business administration in 2001, and was inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame as a "Gator Great" in 2013.[6][7]

Professional career

Pearson was drafted in the second round (fortieth pick overall) in the 2002 NFL Draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars,[8] and he played for the Jaguars from 2002 through 2005.[9] His "break" came in his rookie season, when offensive tackle Maurice Williams was injured. Pearson started at left tackle for thirty-one consecutive games, until he was injured on October 3, 2004 against the Indianapolis Colts; after knee surgery[10] he was placed on injured reserve, and returned in 2005. He started two games in 2005, and was released. In 2006, he was signed by the Miami Dolphins, but released during training camp. He signed by the Houston Texans in November and was released in December.

In June 2007, he signed as a free agent with the CFL's Toronto Argonauts. He began the season as the Argos' starting left tackle, but after two games, was moved to the injured reserved list with an infected right index finger.[11] Pearson was treated to intravenous therapy with serious concerns over whether the infection required finger amputation.[11] He ultimately regained full health without any amputation and returned to his starting duties at left tackle on September 3, 2007 against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.[11] On November 3, 2007, Pearson suffered a season-ending injury when teammate Chad Folk fell on his ankle.[12] On May 31, 2008, Pearson announced his retirement from professional football,[13] after having played in nine regular season games for the Argonauts during 2007.[14]

See also


  1. Pro-Football-Reference.com, Players, Mike Pearson. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
  2. databaseFootball.com, Players, Mike Pearson. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
  3. 1 2 3 GatorZone.com, Football History, 2001 Roster, Mike Pearson. Retrieved March 31, 2011.
  4. 1 2 3 4 2011 Florida Gators Football Media Guide, University Athletic Association, Gainesville, Florida, pp. 89, 94, 97, 99, 103, 185 (2011). Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  5. 2012 NCAA Football Records Book, Award Winners, National Collegiate Athletic Association, Indianapolis, Indiana, pp. 11 & 14 (2012). Retrieved September 14, 2012.
  6. F Club, Hall of Fame, Gator Greats. Retrieved December 14, 2014.
  7. "9 UF Greats Join Hall," The Gainesville Sun (September 10, 2012). Retrieved September 10, 2012.
  8. Pro Football Hall of Fame, Draft History, 2002 National Football League Draft. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
  9. National Football League, Historical Players, Mike Pearson. Retrieved March 19, 2011.
  10. Len Pasquarelli, "Salaam will fill in for Pearson," ESPN (October 4, 2004). Retrieved March 19, 2011.
  11. 1 2 3 Rick Matsumoto, "Argos' Pearson hoping to return after frightening finger infection," The Toronto Star (September 22, 2007). Retrieved July 9, 2010.
  12. "Argonauts wrap up first in CFL East," The Ottawa Citizen (November 4, 2007). Retrieved July 9, 2010.
  13. Rick Matsumoto, "'We are family' important theme for new head coach Rich Stubler," The Toronto Star (June 1, 2008). Retrieved July 9, 2010.
  14. CFLapedia.com, Players A–Z, Mike Pearson. Retrieved March 1, 2012.


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