Another Reason To Watch Monday Night Football

Set your clocks, timers, etc. to 7:00 p.m. Then get your TV channel to ESPN (New England Patriots/ Buffalo Bills), for Duquesne alum Leigh Bodden will be playing in the first Monday Night Football game tonight.

NEC players in the NFL | Patriots profile | Duquesne Profile

    Update: Bodden had a team-best five tackles, four solo, and broke up a pass that otherwise would have been a third-down completion for the Bills in the second quarter. The Patriots' won, 25-24. He also was featured in a Sporting News post-game article. story/stats. (DC-9/17/9)

Duquesne alum Leigh Bodden signed a free agent contract this March with the New England Patriots after playing with the winless Detroit Lions last season.

His 2009 season probably will be similar to Duquesne's 2006-07 men's basketball season's season, and it's relationship to the previous year. DU went from three wins to 10. The Lions, defeated Sunday by the Saints, have an 18-game streak, losing that is.

A number of publications have cited Bodden as one of the Pats' best off season moves. In today's WEEI Sports channel online story, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick told columnist Christopher Price:

    "He's tough. He has long arms. He's good when he can get his hands on the receivers. He has good playing strength. I would say he's a physical corner. He's a good tackler and he jams receivers well. I think he has a physical style, yes." (story)

The free agent contract with New England on March 11, 2009, his second change in two years. That "transaction" is mindful of his start with the Browns, as an undrafted rookie free agent who made the 2003 active roster. He signed a four-year contract with Cleveland on December 29, 2005. Later it was extended through the 2013 season.

That must have added to his security with Browns. Surprise! At the end of February 2008, he was traded to the Detroit Lions for defensive lineman Shaun Rogers and a 2008 third-round pick. Since the Lions had been 7-9 the prior season, 2008 came as another surprise, this one not so hot. The current Pittsburgh Pirates team is experiencing what Leigh Bodden and his teammates did that year -- losing, losing, losing ... For a number of reasons, Duquesne fans are all too familiar with that.

First recognized for his special teams play, Bodden was a strong candidate for the a special teams slot in the 2004 (played in 2005) all-star game. Unfortunately that season ended during the Browns' win over the Ravens on November 7, 2004. Few days later, his season officially was over as he was placed on the insured reserve (torn pectoral muscle).

Th Hyattsville, Md. native (that's Redskin territory) was ready in 2005. By midseason, he captured the right cornerback starting position. His first NFL touchdown was via Steelers Jeff Reed's blocked field goal attempt (11/13/2005 - week 10)

    After his senior season, Bodden was an American Football Coaches Association Division I-AA All-American and the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Football League Defensive Player of the Year. He also was a consensus All-American as a junior.

    The Northwestern High School grad finished his career with 28 interceptions, tying the previous I-AA career record since broken by fellow AFCA All-American Rashean Mathis of Bethune-Cookman (Jaguars).

    The holder of every Duquesne interception record, he picked off seven passes in 2002 under Coach Gattuso including a school record-tying three vs. Iona. He was a prime reason DU's defense was ranked No. 1 in Division I-AA in 2002 in total and scoring defense and second in pass and pass efficiency defense.

Oh year, MNF. Not sure how ESPN will announce the starting lineups. So if not tonight, on November 15, 2009, Bodden will get his first opportunity (to my knowledge) to introduce himself, name his pre-NFL team and, for DU folks, hear "Duquesne" on national television in connection with pro football.

I may gush.

DukesSports Top Stories