A great player, and a great man

Reggie White was a tremendous football player, but former teammate Eric Allen believe he was an even better human being.

Updated: December 5, 2005, 12:39 PM ET
By Eric Allen | ESPN Insider
I miss Reggie White.

To many people, Reggie White was just a football player, albeit a great one. He was someone fun to watch on Sundays, someone who wreaked havoc on the opposing offense. Those people can recite his 13 Pro Bowls, 198 sacks and his Super Bowl victory with the Green Bay Packers. They can tell you how on Eagles' teams with players like Fred Barnett, Keith Jackson, Keith Byars, Randall Cunningham, Fred Byars, Clyde Simmmons, Seth Joyner, Cris Carter and myself that White stood above and beyond everyone else.

I know that Reggie White, but I also had the pleasure to know the other Reggie White. I had the pleasure to know not just the player, but also the man, and he was a great man. We were teammates from 1988-1992, and when I came into the league I thought I had what it took to be a great player. White taught me I had what it takes to be great both on the field and off.

His infectious spirit and gentle ways were the biggest influence on me from the time I arrived with the Eagles until this very moment. We stayed in touch throughout my time in the league, and even after I retired. He was a God-fearing man who wasn't afraid to let others see and hear what he felt was important to his faith. There were times when that got him into trouble, but his faith and strong belief system are what helped make him such a great man.

Eric Allen

NFL studio analyst
Eric Allen, a 14-year NFL veteran and was one of the NFL's premier defensive backs, joined ESPN in August 2002 as an NFL studio analyst. His primary role is providing analysis for ESPNEWS' Monday Quarterback.