R.W. McQuarters is a former NFL cornerback who played from 1998 to 2008.
McQuarters was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the first round (28th overall) of the 1998 NFL Draft out of Oklahoma State. In his two years in San Francisco, he was mostly used as a kick returner and punt returner, returning 43 kicks and 65 punts for the 49ers.
For the rest of his career, with the Chicago Bears (2000-2004), Detroit Lions (2005) and New York Giants (2006-2008), he was used more as a cornerback, and amassed a total of 371 tackles, 3.0 sacks, 14 interceptions, three forced fumbles and three touchdowns.
McQuarters’ most famous moments as a player came in the 2007 playoffs, when he was a member of the future Super Bowl champion New York Giants. In their Wild Card game, the Giants were clinging on to a 24-14 lead over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with 2:00 left. In the play right after the two-minute warning, McQuarters intercepted Tampa Bay quarterback Jeff Garcia to end the game. At first, McQuarters was ruled out of bounds, but after further review, it was apparent that his right foot was in bounds, which clinched a trip to Dallas to play the archrival Dallas Cowboys.
In Dallas, McQuarters once again sealed the win for the Giants, intercepting Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo in the end zone with nine seconds left to hold on to win 21-17. The Giants won the Super Bowl two games later, and McQuarters earned the only Super Bowl ring of his career.
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I will remember R.W. McQuarters for both his clutch interceptions as well as his dreadlocks. In all my years rooting the Giants, I don’t remember very many players that sported dreadlocks (only former safety Chad Jones comes to mind). As Super Bowl 42 grows farther and farther away, I start to forget the names of some of the players on the roster. McQuarters will not be one of those players, as he will always be “clutch defensive guy with the dreadlocks” to me.