Barry Krauss spent 13 seasons in the NFL, 10 of them with the Baltimore and Indianapolis Colts. The team's No. 1 draft pick in 1989, Krauss amassed more than 1,000 tackles in his pro career, which ended in 1991 with the Miami Dolphins. Playing under legendary coach Paul "Bear" Bryant, Krauss is beloved by Alabama fans for engineering a fourth-and-goal stop in the 1979 Sugar Bowl. He now co-hosts the NUVO/Champps NFL Postgame Show on ESPN Sports Radio 950.
Q: Why have the Colts been so successful this year?
A: I think it's due to the ability of the head coach. Last year, they were 4-3 and a lot of the guys were sitting there wondering about being cut. Coach Tony Dungy told the team they'd get on track, that everything would be fine. Then they went out and won eight consecutive games and then started this season 11-0. He does a great job in motivating the players.
Q: What have you done in the years after your NFL career?
A: I do a lot of professional speaking. I have a book coming out in August of next year. I also paint pictures. I sold a picture to a museum in Alabama. I also do a lot of radio and TV. I keep busy.
Q: Talk about the influence coach Bryant had on you.
A: He basically taught us about life, whereas the rest of the coaching staff taught us about football. Coach Bryant was into telling us about things on the football field and how they related to life. He told us that we'd face adversity but we'd have to pick ourselves up. One of the things that I have in common with Joe Namath and Kenny Stabler is that we joke that coach Bryant tried to kill us all. He'd put us on the Astroturf for 100 plays until we thought we were gonna die, but it was about getting us mentally tough for the game. Vince Lombardi said, "Fatigue makes cowards of us all." Coach Bryant didn't want you to quit during a game, so he'd rather have you quit on him during practice.
Q: What was your greatest moment as a pro?
A: My greatest moment was becoming a Miami Dolphin and playing for Don Shula. I grew up in Fort Lauderdale and I loved the Dolphins and I loved Don Shula. I ended up fulfilling a childhood dream. After I became a Dolphin in 1989, my third-grade teacher wrote me a letter saying that I'd told her I'd be a Dolphin one day. She said, "See? Dreams do come true."
Q: What advice to you give youngsters who want to play in the NFL one day?
A: No. 1, be the best you can be. That's all anyone can ask of you. That means doing everything you can do to get better and work harder than everyone else. No. 2, dream big. My dream came true and their dreams can come true too, if they maintain focus and work hard.