Rushmore Rules are simple: pick the four who most deserve being
part of the division pantheon. No more than four, no fewer than four.
Here's my Rushmore of NFC East punters:
Sammy Baugh, Washington Redskins -- There was a time when punters weren't specialists, and here's something crazy to consider: while Baugh was the league's best QB and one of the best safeties, he may also have been the greatest punter in league history. Baugh went to 6 Pro Bowls and was All-Pro 1st team 4 times. True, those honors weren't strictly for punting, but he stopped playing in 1952 and he still ranks 6th all-time in yards per punt (minimum 250 career punts).
Mat McBriar, Dallas Cowboys -- McBriar is one of the more underrated specialists around. He led the league in yards per punt in 2006 and 2010, went to two Pro Bowls and is a two-timer on the AP All-NFL team. He stands 5th all-time in yards per punt yet, Dallas sent him packing after last season, and Philly cut him in the preseason. Still, McBriar makes the punting pantheon.
Don Chandler, New York Giants (also Green Bay Packers) -- A punter/kicker, Chandler played in the first two overtime games in NFL history. His game-winner for the Packers against the Colts was controversial (many thought it was wide right), but the guys who mattered (the refs) thought it was good. He was the league's all-decade punter for the 60s, and he went to the Pro Bowl in 1967. He's currently 22nd all-time in yards per punt.
Sean Landeta, New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles (also St. Louis, Green Bay and Tampa Bay) -- No list of great NFC East punters would be complete without Landeta, who stayed in the NFL for 21 years. He was first team All-Pro 3 times and a two-time Pro Bowler.
These are the guys who were close to the pantheon, but not
quite in it. While they don't get their likeness dynamited into the side
of a cliff, they at least rate a high-quality commemorative plaque hung
at a popular viewing area. The plaques go to:
Matt Turk, Washington Redskins (also Houston, Miami, Jacksonville, New York Jets, St. Louis)
Sam Baker, Philadelphia Eagles (also Washington, Cleveland and Dallas)
Dave Jennings, New York Giants (also New York Jets
Adrian Burk, Philadelphia Eagles (also Baltimore Colts)
Jeff Feagles, New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles (also Seattle, Arizona and New England)
Danny White, Dallas Cowboys
So, that's the Rushmore List of NFC East punters. Who should move
from the "commemorative plaques" section and who should come down from
the cliff? Who's not on the list that should be
there? Post your list in the comments. Just remember, you get only four
selections, so if you want to add someone, one of the guys I chose needs
to come down. There's only room for four.