Redskins

Riveting New Video Documents Life of Clinton Portis (Watch)

by Chris Lingebach
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3 Jan 2002: Clinton Portis #28 of Miami carries the football against the Nebraska defense during the Rose Bowl National Championship game at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. Miami won the game 37-14, winning the BCS and the National Championship title. (Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)

3 Jan 2002: Clinton Portis #28 of Miami carries the football against the Nebraska defense during the Rose Bowl National Championship game at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. Miami won the game 37-14, winning the BCS and the National Championship title. (Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)

Chris Lingebach Chris Lingebach
Chris Lingebach is a writer for CBSDC.com, 1067thefandc.com, and blogs...
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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – There’s a riveting new video documenting the life of former Redskins running back Clinton Portis, released by Portis on vimeo Friday afternoon.


(Video below)

It starts with Portis’ humble beginnings as a near destitute child — with chilling footage of his first childhood home in Laurel, Miss., resembling more a shack in the woods than a place befitting of rearing a child — where his single mother struggled to work a full-time job while shielding Clinton from the drugs and crime all around him.

“My grandfather used to pat my cousins down coming into the house,” Portis said. “And fourth, fifth, sixth grade, I’m carrying guns in the house and bringing dope in the house.”

“My mom surrendered herself for the betterment of, definitely, me,” Portis said of his mother’s decision to move them to Gainesville, Fla., where Clinton would eventually showcase his football talents at Gainesville High School, just as his older brother was heading off to prison.

After being recruited to play corner right away by colleges far and wide, Portis eventually chose University of Miami, where he was offered nothing more than the chance to ‘compete’ for playing time as a running back.

“If you want to see what real competition is, and you want to see if you can hang with that competition, then come to Miami, and you find out right quick how good you are,” recalled then-Miami running backs coach Don Soldinger.

“I’m thinking all these schools calling me, feeding me whatever, and this man’s telling me he don’t care if I come or not,” Portis remembered. “And I think that sparked my interest, that grabbed my attention, like, I gotta go compete.”

Despite struggling to earn time on the field in 1999 — he remembered tearing up on the sideline, watching others get the touches he wanted — Portis would capitalize when he was fed the ball, going on to set the school’s freshman rushing record with 838 yards (and 8 touchdowns).

He played two more seasons with Miami — amassing 2,523 yards, 20 touchdowns and winning the 2001 National Championship, on perhaps one of the greatest college football teams ever assembled — before declaring for the 2002 NFL Draft

On draft day, Portis was slighted once more, falling to the second round where he was selected 51st overall by the then-Mike Shanahan-led Denver Broncos.

“My first two years in the league, I hated every team except for the Denver Broncos and the Washington Redskins. They didn’t have a first-round pick. Everybody who had a first-round pick that passed on me, I tortured them.”

However funny that last line may be, it’s not technically accurate, or even at all accurate.

The Redskins selected quarterback Patrick Ramsey in the first round of that draft, 32nd overall.

Revisionist history aside, perhaps the Washington would have been better served taking Clinton Portis. It would have spared them from trading Champ Bailey two years later for … Clinton Portis.

That’s only part of the story. You’ll want to watch the rest below. There’s plenty more Redskins highlights, and Portis opens up about the death of friend and teammate Sean Taylor.

As he notes in the tweet at the top of this post: You’ll need the password “raycomsports” to proceed in viewing. It’s very easy. Just follow the on-screen prompting.

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