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Donte Whitner
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Whitner with the Cleveland Browns in 2014
No. --     
Strong safety
Personal information
Date of birth: (1985-07-24) July 24, 1985 (age 34)
Place of birth: Cleveland, Ohio
Career information
College: Ohio State
NFL Draft: 2006 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
* Buffalo Bills ( 2006 2010)
Career highlights and awards
* 2× Pro Bowl (2012, 2014)
Total tackles     922
Sacks     3.0
Forced fumbles     11
Fumble recoveries     6
Interceptions     11
Defensive touchdowns     2

Donte Demetrius Whitner Sr.[1] (born July 24, 1985) is an American football strong safety who is currently a free agent. He played college football at Ohio State, and was drafted by the Buffalo Bills eighth overall in the 2006 NFL Draft. Whitner has also played for the San Francisco 49ers, Cleveland Browns, and Washington Redskins.

Early yearsEdit

Whitner was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He is the older brother of former Connecticut Huskies defensive end Lindsey Witten. He attended Glenville High School in Cleveland. After his senior high school football season he was invited to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl game. He attended Ohio State, not finishing his degree, and then enrolling at San Jose State University.[2]

When Whitner was six years old he was hit by an oncoming car after chasing a loose football down the street. He had up to 30 fractures in his legs from the impact and was told that he might not be able to walk again. The oncoming car suffered significant body damage. He spent three months in a full body cast but recovered.[3]

Professional careerEdit

Pre-draft measureables
Ht Wt 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP Wonderlic
5 ft 10 in 204 lb 4.45 s 1.56 s 2.61 s 40 in 11 ft 0 in 18 rep

Buffalo BillsEdit

The Buffalo Bills selected Whitner in the first round (eighth overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft. Whitner was the second safety drafted in 2006 and was selected one pick behind Texas safety Michael Huff.

Whitner missed the beginning of training camp due to a contract holdout. On August 7, 2006, the Buffalo Bills signed Whitner to a five-year, $$29 million contract that includes $13.51 million guaranteed.[5][6]

In his first career game, he recorded his first career interception against Tom Brady. The ruling on the field was a touchdown, but was later overruled when replay showed that Whitner had stepped out of bounds. He finished 2006 with 104 total tackles and one interception for 10 yards. In 2009, Whitner recorded his first career touchdown on a 76-yard interception return from Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Byron Leftwich in Week 2. His most productive game to date was in Week 12 of the 2010 season, where he recorded 18 total tackles against the Pittsburgh Steelers.[7]

San Francisco 49ersEdit

File:Donte Whitner in 2013.jpg

On August 4, 2011, Whitner signed with the San Francisco 49ers. After previously announcing on Twitter that he would be going to the Cincinnati Bengals, he changed his mind and signed with San Francisco. He agreed to a three-year, $11.75 million deal with $4 million guaranteed. After his performance in his first year as a 49er, he was named to the USA Today All Joe Team[8] During the 2011 playoffs, Whitner became famous for making vicious hits like against New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas as he was driving for a touchdown. The hit forced a fumble recovered by the 49ers and took Thomas out for the rest of the game.

At the end of the 2012 season, Whitner and the 49ers appeared in Super Bowl XLVII. In the game, he had eight combined tackles as the 49ers fell to the Baltimore Ravens by a score of 34–31.[9]

In 2013, in a game against the St. Louis Rams, Whitner was fined for a hit on receiver Chris Givens. In response to the fine, he indicated that he would be legally changing his last name from "Whitner" to "Hitner", dropping the "W" from his surname.[10] In an appearance on NFL Network's "NFL Total Access" on November 27, 2013, Whitner indicated that his request was to be processed on November 19, but had to be withdrawn when he was unable to honor the judge's requirement that he appear in court. During the same interview, Whitner indicated that he would pursue his name change during the offseason.[11]

Cleveland BrownsEdit

Whitner signed a four-year deal worth $28 million with the Cleveland Browns on March 11, 2014.[12] On April 2, 2016, Whitner was released by the team.[13] With his release, the Cleveland Browns cleared $3.95 million of cap space.[14]

Washington RedskinsEdit

On October 5, 2016, Whitner signed with the Washington Redskins.[15] After two games with the team, he became the starter at strong safety.[16] He was placed on injured reserve on December 28 due to a quad injury.[17]

NFL statisticsEdit

Year Team Games Tackles Fumbles Interceptions
G GS Comb Total Ast Sack FF FR Yds Int Yds Avg Lng TD PD
2006 BUF 15 14 104 67 37 0.0 0 0 0 1 10 10 10 0 5
2007 BUF 15 15 89 68 21 0.0 1 0 0 1 29 29 29 0 1
2008 BUF 13 13 61 50 11 1.0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
2009 BUF 10 8 57 42 15 0.0 0 0 0 2 104 52 76 1 5
2010 BUF 16 16 140 96 44 0.5 1 1 0 1 37 37 37 0 7
2011 SF 15 15 62 49 13 0.0 1 3 3 2 48 24 48 0 10
2012 SF 16 16 83 62 21 0.0 2 1 0 1 42 42 42 1 5
2013 SF 16 16 73 58 15 0.0 2 1 -5 2 7 4 7 0 12
2014 CLE 16 16 106 69 37 0.0 1 0 0 1 54 54 54 0 5
2015 CLE 14 14 81 58 23 1.5 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4
2016 WASH 11 9 66 49 17 0.0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Career 157 152 922 668 254 3.0 12 6 0 11 331 30 76 2 55
[18]

ReferencesEdit

  1. "Whitner on Pro-Football-Reference". rbref.com. https://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/W/WhitDo20.htm.
  2. [1]
  3. [2]
  4. "*Donte Whitner, DS #2 SS, Ohio State". http://www.draftscout.com/ratings/dsprofile.php?pyid=12437&draftyear=2006&genpos=SS. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
  5. "Spotrac.com: Donte Whitner contract". http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/washington-redskins/donte-whitner-1191/. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
  6. "Error: no |title= specified when using {{Cite web}}". http://www.niagara-gazette.com/sports/buffalo-bills-donte-whitner-signs-five-year-deal/article_4a89392e-4533-5383-99ec-b05144f2b644.html. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
  7. "Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills - November 28th, 2010" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201011280buf.htm.
  8. http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/2009-01-20-all-joe-team_N.htm
  9. "Super Bowl XLVII - San Francisco 49ers vs. Baltimore Ravens - February 3rd, 2013" (in en). https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201302030sfo.htm.
  10. Rosenthal, Gregg (October 2, 2013). "Donte Whitner says he's changing last name to 'Hitner'". National Football League. http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap2000000254553/article/donte-whitner-says-hes-changing-name-to-hitner. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
  11. "San Francisco 49ers safety Donte Whitner: 'We feel like it's our time'". NFL Network. November 27, 2013. http://www.nfl.com/videos/san-francisco-49ers/0ap2000000289060/Whitner-We-feel-like-it-s-our-time. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  12. Karlos Dansby, Donte Whitner lead Cleveland Browns' free-agent crop
  13. "Browns release DB Donte Whitner". http://www.clevelandbrowns.com/news/article-5/Browns-release-DB-Donte-Whitner/fb2410b5-df6b-4902-8635-d43bb4c457cf. Retrieved April 3, 2016.
  14. http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/washington-redskins/donte-whitner-1191/
  15. Czarda, Stephen (October 5, 2016). "Redskins Sign Safeties Donte Whitner And Josh Evans". https://web.archive.org/web/20170804052944/http://www.redskins.com/news/article-1/Redskins-Sign-Safeties-Donte-Whitner-And-Josh-Evans/7eac752e-5f51-4580-9651-01dc52f8d64c.
  16. Tesfatsion, Master (October 25, 2016). "Redskins’ defense snap counts vs. the Lions: Donte Whitner starts at strong safety". WashingtonPost.com. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/football-insider/wp/2016/10/25/redskins-defense-snap-counts-vs-the-lions-donte-whitner-starts-at-strong-safety/. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  17. Czarda, Stephen (December 28, 2016). "Redskins Sign Josh Evans, Place Donte Whitner Sr. On Injured Reserve". Redskins.com. http://www.redskins.com/news/article-1/Redskins-Sign-Josh-Evans-Place-Donte-Whitner-Sr-On-Injured-Reserve/a2944ffa-67e2-4636-97f0-788a0a553e7a. Retrieved December 28, 2016.
  18. "Donte Whitner Stats". ESPN Internet Ventures. http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/stats/_/id/9594/donte-whitner. Retrieved April 3, 2016.

External linksEdit

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