Generations: Brandon Gibson And Mark Duper

Posted Mar 6, 2014

Current and former Dolphins share their views on different football topics. In this edition, a pair of wide receivers, Brandon Gibson and Honor Roll member Mark Duper, share their thoughts on their toughest opponents, most memorable career moments and which coaches had the biggest influence on their playing careers.

Who is/was the toughest cornerback you have faced?

Brandon Gibson: “Antonio Cromartie from the Jets was a pretty good matchup for me because he’s fast, he’s long, he has good recovery speed, he understands routes and splits and he’s just a good football player.”

Mark Duper: “Raymond Clayborn of the New England Patriots had a knack for anticipating the routes and jumping the routes and getting his hands on the ball and just making it tough on me to get open.”

Who sets/set the bar at your position?

Gibson: “There’s a bunch of them. There’s Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Johnson, A.J. Green and Brandon Marshall. Those guys I think are at the top of their game at their sport and kind of set the standard.”

Duper: “It would have to be Jerry Rice, though he did have a ton of balls thrown his way by Joe Montana, which allowed him to put up the types of numbers Mark Clayton and I strived for. His route running and his ability to catch the ball and make plays after the catch really set the bar.”

Which player did you admire growing up?

Gibson: “Jerry Rice, Michael Irvin, Eric Metcalf and Emmitt Smith. Those are the guys I liked to watch when I was younger.”

Duper: “I grew up a Dallas Cowboys fan, so old double-zero, “Bullet” Bob Hayes, was the guy I looked up to because of his Olympic speed and ability to get open on the deep ball and stretch the field.”

What has been/was the most memorable moment of your career?

Gibson: “It’s probably my game-winner against Buffalo in 2012 with St. Louis because of the situation and the actual play. There was less than a minute left (48 seconds) and we were down 13-7 and I had to leave my feet in the end zone to make the catch.”

Duper: “There are a bunch of them, but I’d have to say the catch I made against the Rams that went to overtime (Dec. 14, 1986, a 37-31 victory). We got the ball and Dan (Marino) threw it up in the end zone behind the cornerback and I didn’t get my hands up until the ball was right in the back of his head and I snatched it up over his head and came up with it in the end zone (for a 20-yard TD reception).”

Which coach had the biggest influence on your playing career?

Gibson: “My college position coach (Michael Levenseller) and my high school basketball coach (Rod Iverson). Those two taught me a lot and I think really made me a tougher athlete and a better person.”

Duper: “Obviously, it’s Coach Shula because he took a chance on me by going into the backwoods and pulling me out of the woodwork, so to speak. I was a track guy who hadn’t played a lot of football but he saw something in me and was responsible for the career that I had.”

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