Henry Major Poteat II was born on August 30, 1977 in Harrisburg, Pa. … Twice earned all-conference honors as a defensive back and running back at Harrisburg High … Also lettered three times in both basketball and track … Attended prep school at Maine Central Institute in 1995 … Majored in business at Pittsburgh … Has a daughter, Ariana Mia.
Hank Poteat was signed by the Patriots as a free agent on Jan. 10, 2005 … Originally drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the third round of the 2000 NFL Draft (77th overall) … Released by Pittsburgh (8/31/03) … Signed as a free agent by Tampa Bay (10/21/03) … Released by Tampa Bay (11/12/03) … Signed by the Carolina Panthers (12/30/03) … Released by Carolina (09/05/04).
Career GP/GS: 52/1 (7/1)
Poteat signed with the Patriots just before their 2005 postseason run and played in all three playoff games as the Patriots won their third Super Bowl in four years.
Poteat recorded first NFL start for Pittsburgh in an AFC Wild Card Playoff game against Cleveland (01/05/03).
Poteat tied for fourth in the AFC and sixth in the NFL with a 13.0 yard punt return average on 36 returns for 467 yards and one touchdown as a rookie with Pittsburgh in 2000.
Poteat returned a punt 53 yards for a touchdown versus Washington (12/16/00), marking the longest punt return for a touchdown by a Steelers player at Three Rivers Stadium.
2006 (2/1/0/0): Released on Oct. 9, 2006 ... Signed as a free agent on Sept. 27, 2006.
at Cincinnati (10/1): Started as a nickel back and registered four tackles (3 solo) and a pass defensed in the Patriots' commanding 38-13 victory over the Bengals ... Broke up a pass intended for T.J. Houshmandzadeh during a two-minute drill at the end of the first half. vs. Miami (10/8): Played on special teams coverage units and collected a solo special teams tackle in the Patriots' 20-10 win over the Dolphins.
2005 (10/1/0/0): Signed as a free agent on Oct. 19, 2005 … Made his first career start at cornerback against Miami (1/1/06) … Registered 24 tackles (20 solo), a sack and a pass defensed in 10 games at cornerback. Buffalo (10/30): Saw significant action at cornerback in the Patriots’ 21-16 victory over the Bills on Sunday Night Football … Collected two solo tackles in defensive play … Sealed the game by stuffing Eric Moulds for no gain on a fourth-and-eight pass play. Indianapolis (11/7): Saw limited action in the secondary and on special teams coverage units. at Miami (11/13): Saw action in a reserve role at cornerback and tallied two solo tackles in the Patriots’ 23-16 road victory over the Dolphins … Stuffed Ronnie Brown for a 5-yard loss on a screen pass in the fourth quarter. New Orleans (11/20): Saw action as a reserve at cornerback and registered two solo tackles in the Patriots’ 24-17 win over the Saints. at Kansas City (11/27): Saw action as a reserve in the secondary. N.Y. Jets (12/4): Saw action as the nickel back and notched two solo tackles in the Patriots’ 16-3 victory over the Jets. at Buffalo (12/11): Saw action as the nickel back in the Patriots’ commanding 35-7 road victory over the Bills. Tampa Bay (12/17): Saw action as the nickel back and collected three tackles (2 solo) in the Patriots’ 28-0 shutout victory over the Buccaneers. at N.Y. Jets (12/26): Saw significant action at cornerback … Notched four tackles (2 solo), a sack and a forced fumble in the Patriots’ 31-21 victory over the Jets … Sacked Brooks Bollinger for 9-yard loss, forcing the signal caller to fumble and the loose ball was recovered by Richard Seymour at the Jets’ 36-yard line in the fourth quarter. Miami (1/1): Made his first career start at cornerback and led the team with nine tackles (8 solo) … Teamed with Mike Wright to stuff Ricky Williams for no gain on a rush off right end in the third quarter … Collected a special teams stop on coverage units.
2005 Postseason (2/0/0/0): Jacksonville (1/7): Saw significant action as the nickel back ... Collected a solo tackle and a pass defensed in the Patriots' 28- 3 AFC Wild Card victory over the Jaguars ... Knocked down a pass intended for Ernest Wilford in the fourth quarter. at Denver (1/14): Saw action as the nickel back and registered a tackle ... Teamed with Chad Brown to stop Rod Smith for five yards on a third-and-seven play in the first quarter.
2004 (0/0, 3/0): Signed with the Patriots in the week prior to their divisional playoff game and participated in all three postseason contests, recording three solo tackles. Indianapolis (1/16): Saw limited action as a cornerback in the fourth quarter of the Patriots' 20-3 victory over the Colts. Pittsburgh (1/23): Saw significant action at cornerback ... Collected two solo tackles and a pass defensed in the Patriots' 41-27 AFC Championship victory over the Steelers ... Teamed with Troy Brown to limit Hines Ward to a 6-yard gain on a third-and-eight play in the first quarter ... Batted down a Ben Roethlisberger pass intended for Hines Ward in the second quarter. 2003 (1/0 - Tampa Bay): Waived by Pittsburgh prior to the start of the regular season (8/31) … Signed as a free agent with Tampa Bay (10/21) and was later waived (11/12) … Saw action in one game and was inactive for two contests with the Buccaneers, contributing three special teams tackles.
2003 (1/0 - Tampa Bay): Waived by Pittsburgh prior to the start of the regular season (8/31) … Signed as a free agent with Tampa Bay (10/21) and was later waived (11/12) … Saw action in one game and was inactive for two contests with the Buccaneers, contributing three special teams tackles.
2002 (13/0, 2/1 - Pittsburgh): Played in 13 regular season games and was inactive for three contests...Saw most extensive action of career on defense and registered 10 tackles...Returned five kickoffs for 103 yards and four punts for 29 yards...Finished with nine stops and one fumble recovery on special teams...Inactive versus Oakland (9/15) with an injured toe...Inactive at Tennessee (11/17) and versus Cincinnati (11/24) with a knee injury...Appeared in both of the Steelers playoff contests with one start...At New England (9/9): Began season with two kickoff returns for 45 yards...Vs. Atlanta (11/10): Recorded one tackle and three special teams stops before suffering knee injury...Vs. Carolina (12/15): Notched four punt returns for 29 yards...Vs. Baltimore (12/29): Totaled three kickoff returns for 58 yards...AFC Wild Card vs. Cleveland (1/5): Made first NFL start as Pittsburgh opened with five defensive backs and responded with two tackles to go along with four kickoff returns for 55 yards.
2001 (13/0 - Pittsburgh): Played in 13 regular season games and was inactive for three contests as well as both of Pittsburgh's postseason games...Led the Steelers with an 8.1 yard punt return average on 36 returns for 292 yards...Also returned 16 kickoffs for 250 yards...Accounted for six special teams tackles and one stop on defense...At Buffalo (9/30): Equaled single-game high with six punt returns and amassed a career-best 91 punt return yards...At Tampa Bay (10/21): Registered first NFL tackle in addition to returning two punts for 10 yards and one kickoff for 19 yards...Vs. New York Jets (12/9): Inactive because of ankle injury...At Baltimore (12/16): Returned to action and notched two kickoff returns for 37 yards...Vs. Detroit (12/23): Inactive...At Cincinnati (12/30): Inactive.
2000 (15/0 - Pittsburgh): Played in 15 games as a rookie, primarily on special teams … Tied for fourth in the AFC and sixth in the NFL with a 13.0 yard punt return average on 36 returns for 467 yards and one touchdown … Averaged 19.4 yards on a team-leading 24 kickoff returns for 465 yards … Collected seven special teams tackles. Baltimore (9/3): Made his NFL debut and returned one kickoff for 25 yards. Jacksonville (10/1): Recorded a career-long 31-yard kickoff return and three punt returns for 51 yards. Cincinnati (10/15): Established a single-game best with six punt returns for 78 yards. Cleveland (10/22): Registered a career-long 54- yard punt return that set up a touchdown among four returns for 74 yards. N.Y. Giants (12/10): Established career highs with five kickoff returns and 88 kickoff return yards. Washington (12/16): Posted two punt returns for 56 yards, including a 53-yard return for a touchdown that marked the longest punt return for a touchdown by a Steelers player at Three Rivers Stadium in team history. San Diego (12/24): Accumulated a season-high 84 punt return yards on five punts in addition to returning one kickoff for 13 yards.
Finished University of Pittsburgh career with 136 tackles, 10 interceptions, a school-record 1,917 kickoff return yards, 499 punt return yards, 90 rushing yards and 54 receiving yards...1999 (Sr.): Earned All-Big East Conference honors after starting all 11 games at cornerback and recording 44 tackles, a team-leading three interceptions, nine passes defensed and one forced fumble...Averaged 23.6 yards on 17 kickoff returns for 401 yards...Ranked seventh in the nation with 19 punt returns for 307 yards and one touchdown...1998 (Jr.): Garnered first-team All-Big East Conference recognition...started 10 contests at cornerback and led the Panthers with six interceptions in addition to registering 57 tackles and eight passes defensed...Established a school single-season record with 764 kickoff return yards on 36 returns and added 131 yards on 16 punt returns...1997 (So.): Began campaign at running back before moving to cornerback...Appeared in 11 games, starting the final four contests at cornerback...Collected 28 tackles and one interception on defense and gained two yards rushing on seven carries and 48 yards receiving on four receptions on offense...Returned 11 kickoffs for 307 yards and six punts for 43 yards...1996 (Fr.): Played in eight games, seeing action at cornerback in three contests prior to being switched to running back...Notched seven tackles on defense...Carried 20 times for 88 yards and caught two passes for six yards on offense...Averaged 26.2 yards on 17 kickoff returns for 445 yards and contributed three punt returns for 18 yards.
Hank is the oldest of five children. He and his wife, Jasmine, helped put two of his four younger sisters through college. One attended Morgan State and the other attended Hampton University.