Card: Score 2010
Acquired: TTM 2020, C/o Home
Sent: Received: 11/30 (days)
Dré Bly was a second round pick of the then St. Louis Rams in 1999 out of North Carolina. A speedy cornerback, Dré finished his Freshman season at the school in 1996 with an unheard of 11 interceptions, and then later set the conference record for career interceptions with 20. He spent the next 4 seasons with the team, appearing in 2 Superbowls. Bly had his best season arguably in 2001 when he recorded 29 total tackles, 1 forced fumble, 9 pass deflections, and 6 interceptions for 150 yards and 2 TDs (including a 93 yarder).
In 2003, Dré signed with the Detroit Lions, anchoring down their secondary for the next 4 seasons. He immediately paid dividends for the Lions, posting 6 more interceptions for 89 yards and a TD, along with 15 pass deflections, 5 forced fumbles, and 55 total tackles. Later in 2005, Bly again picked off 6 passes, forced 3 fumbles, and recorded 15 pass deflections.
Bly was traded to the Denver Broncos in 2007 for a 5th round pick and two players. True to form, Dré again led his newfound team in interceptions, adding another 5 to his career numbers. He’d be released in early 2009, and join the 49ers a few months later. After a season in SF, when Bly posted 3 interceptions and 2 forced fumbles, he returned home to the Lions in 2010 where he retired.
Dré apparently had been wanting to go into coaching. He was offered his first professional gig by the San Diego Fleet of the Alliance of American Football in 2019, but apparently seeing the tea leaves early on or seizing an opportunity to return home, opted to coach defensive backs at his alma mater North Carolina.
It won’t surprise me if eventually Dré gets his due and is inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame for his gaudy numbers. While his skills did translate to the pro level, with some impressive numbers for a corner (20 forced fumbles, 149 pass deflections), people still look at the overrated interception number to determine HOF eligibility IMHO- and with a backlog at the position of players who haven’t even been considered that have 50 interceptions, I doubt Bly will truly get his fair due.