Every week or so, I’ll be delving into each team’s franchise history to shine the spotlight on a player who hasn’t received the recognition he rightfully deserved outside of that fan base. All teams have players who come into the organization, work hard day in and day out, do everything that’s asked of them, and ride off into the sunset with little to no fanfare. This series is meant to give these players the appreciation they’re due.
Aaron Schobel: Buffalo’s Working-Class Pass Rusher
The name Aaron Schobel isn’t one that many people outside of the Northeast will remember, even though he spent nearly a decade in the league and his career ended just eight years ago. Fans in Buffalo will likely remember who he was, but will they remember how good he was despite playing for and also ran a Bills team that only posted one winning season in his nine-year career? Hopefully they do, because the man worked his behind off for the organization.
Coming into the league in 2001 out of Texas Christian University as a high second-round draft pick (No. 46 overall), Schobel wasted little time making his way onto the field. He started the final 11 games and posted a team-leading 6.5 sacks over the span. The highlight of a mildly successful rookie season had to be that Schobel posted two multiple-sack games, totaling 4 sacks against Tom Brady and the eventual Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots.
Schobel would continue to build on the success of his rookie season, going on to start all 16 games in seven of his eight remaining seasons on the squad. Over that time, however, he was only named to two Pro Bowls, and once was as an alternate.