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January 18, 2008

Who should be in Hall of Fame class?

This is one of those great offseason debates; who should get into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Seventeen potential members were nominated this week, but a maximum of seven and a minimum of four can get in in any given year. The Observer's Charles Chandler is among an exclusive group of sportswriters who make the final decision. They'll vote, as they do every year, the Saturday of Super Bowl Week--and at the Super Site, this year outside of Phoenix.

The nominees include wide receiver Cris Carter and cornerback Darrell Green as first-timers on the ballot, along with a dozen other modern era players-- The other modern-era player finalists include defensive ends Fred Dean and Richard Dent; linebackers Randy Gradishar, Derrick Thomas and Andre Tippett; guards Russ Grimm, Bob Kuechenberg and Randall McDaniel; punter Ray Guy; wide receivers Art Monk and Andre Reed; and tackle Gary Zimmerman. Also in the mix is contributor Paul Tagliabue and senior committee nominees Marshall Goldberg, a back for the Chicago Cardinals when players went both ways, and KC cornerback Emmitt Thomas.

        This is a tough call; who are your seven? Or any number down to four, if seven don't deserve selection.

        I'm not sure about Tagliabue. Do we put a commissioner in just because he was one? The league made dramatic strides under his administration, but more than anything, he simply didn't mess up what Pete Rozelle really got rolling. The NFL was ready to take off, and nothing was going to stop it.

Darrell Green, a four-time all-pro who played for two decades, is a lock in my mind. And I loved watching Chris Carter run and catch. Despite being first-timers, I'd vote them both in. And Zimmerman made the NFL's all-decade team for the 1980s and '90s. How is he not in already?

Is Monk, with his zillion or so catches, worthy?

        The seniors have a good shot because they are vetted out of a whole bunch of guys that didn't make it in their early years of eligibility. Gradishar becomes a senior after this year, at the mercy of the veterans' committee, and that's not necessarily a good thing, because the pool of seniors is so deep.

I would probably go with Green, Carter, Guy (who would be the first punter-only to make it), Zimmerman, Thomas and Monk.

My support for Guy comes from the fact that he did so much toward redefining the role, even though there are guys with better legs out there today. My support for Monk is because I always liked watching him, and I'm tired of seeing him hanging out there year after year.

        Anyway, make your picks, this is a fan's participation blog, as you guys never tire of letting me know!

-- Stan Olson 

Posted by Observer Sports on January 18, 2008 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

Comments

In no particular order, I'd guess Tagliabu, Monk, Green, Thomas, Chris Carter, Randall McDaniel, and Ray Guy

Posted by: Marty | Jan 18, 2008 11:48:42 AM

Darrell Green is a must - 20 consecutive years of at least one interception - plus that great punt return in the playoffs when he was a youngster put the Redskins in the Super Bowl.

Art Monk - what more does a WR have to do - set every record (at the time) for catches, yards, consecutive games with a catch, he blocked, and was a great leader. He's in.

Bob Kuechenberg - he's waited long enough - he was dominant - Grimm for next year (do the Hogs ever get a player in the HOF).

I like Reed and Carter as well. Do you know there have been more Guards put into the HOF the past 7 years than WRs? What's up with that. These guys were dominant and had to be accounted for when you played them.

The Seniors always get their two in, though I've never heard of them.

Ray Guy had a leg that just wouldn't quit, but he always out kicked his coverage and his net yardage wasn't great. You'd think the way folks talk about him, he kicked farther than anyone else - but I believe Sammy Baugh (a HOF QB) has the record for gross punting average at over 50 yards a kick.

Posted by: Ray Bayer | Jan 18, 2008 1:22:45 PM

I agree with you on all but one: make Carter wait 'til next time.

Posted by: Gerald | Jan 18, 2008 1:59:52 PM

You should be Stan

Posted by: Stan the man | Jan 18, 2008 3:28:42 PM

I would choose: wide receivers Art Monk and Andre Reed; guard Randall McDaniel; punter Ray Guy; first timers wide receiver Cris Carter and cornerback Darrell Green; and commissioner Paul Tagliabue. All of these gentlemen had great character and helped make the NFL what it is today.

Posted by: SYRPIS | Jan 18, 2008 4:31:47 PM

I WOULD CHOOSE CRIS CARTER,ART MONK,DARRELL GREEN AND RAY GUY. THE YEARS GONE BY SHOULDN'T DIM OUR PERSPECTIVE AS TO HOW DOMINANT AND PROLIFIC CARTER WAS.HIS NUMBERS ONLY PALE IN COMPARISON TO THE GREAT JERRY RICE. HE HAS ARGUABLY THE BEST HANDS PRO FOOTBALL HAS EVER SEEN SANS STICK-UM. EXPLAIN HOW MICHAEL IRVIN COULD MAKE THE HALL BEFORE MONK? WHEN HE RETIRED HE HELD ALL THE RECORDS THAT WOULD EVENTUALLY BELONG TO RICE.HE HAS THE SAME AMOUNT OF RINGS AS IRVIN AND HE WAS EVERY BIT AS INTEGRAL TO HIS TEAM AS IRVIN. DARRELL GREEN? THE NAME SAYS IT ALL. WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO SAY? IF ANY PUNTER BELONGS IN THE HALL,IT IS RAY GUY. HE COULD DO ALL THE THINGS ASKED OF A PUNTER. HE HAD GREAT HANG-TIME, PINPOINT ACCURACY IN PLACEMENT AND GOOD DISTANCE. THESE FOUR ARE VERY DESERVING.

Posted by: DAVID C HARPER | Jan 18, 2008 5:10:14 PM

I'm sorry, but I just don't think Cris Carter deserves the hall of fame. Art Monk won Superbowls, he DOES deserve it. And no, I'm not a Redskins fan, I can't stand them.

Posted by: Tony F'ing Rowell | Jan 18, 2008 6:18:07 PM

My thinking on Carter is those amazing hands of his, and the way he always seemed to win jump balls...

Posted by: stan olson | Jan 18, 2008 6:27:21 PM

I'm with Stan. Carter was Mr. TD!

Posted by: SYRPIS | Jan 18, 2008 8:00:14 PM

I think Chris Carter is the biggest no-brainer in the bunch or right up there with Green. Carter is currently 2nd on the all time td reception list behind Jerry Rice. He also 2nd in all time receptions behind Rice. Sure I think Monk and Reed belong in Canton at some point, but Carter's numbers are too impressive not to be voted in on the first ballot.

Posted by: m | Jan 18, 2008 8:30:26 PM

Tagliabue, Green, Monk, Keuchenburg, Carter, and Grimm

Tagliabue didn't mess up a good thing, but he took it to an even bigger level. Plus, there were no work stoppages during his tenure.

Green is a lock.

Monk has been robbed for several years and deserves to be in.

There are lesser 72-73 Miami Dolphins offensive linemen in the HOF so I think Keuchenburg should be in there.

Grimm should be in because he (or Joe Jacoby) was the best OL on a team that was very very good for many years... a team whose offense was predicated on running the ball by the way.

Posted by: Matt | Jan 18, 2008 8:56:56 PM

And what about Goldberg! Just because most of you don't remember him, how could you, he played from 1939 to 1948, doesn't mean he hasn't earned it in spades!!!

He played when a player was in the game for it's entirety not just for specific plays, had amazing stats, often running over 50 yards for his touchdowns and playing hurt.

He is in the Hall of Fame for college ball, although they called it just The Hall of Fame back then.

The Chicago Carndinals won the World Championship in 47', the equivalent to today's Super Bowl and all played in leather helmuts! No Gortex or space blankets then to keep them dry and warm.

He dedicated his life to the sport...it's his time!

Posted by: Loyd | Jan 19, 2008 10:04:07 AM

Keep in mind that the Pro Football Hall of Fame has increased the maximum # of people that can go into the Hall of Fame in one year to 7 and a minimum of 4.

Posted by: Trevor | Jan 19, 2008 11:32:16 AM

What, exactly, does this have to do with the Panthers. This is the "Inside the Panthers" blog, right?

Posted by: John | Jan 19, 2008 12:25:40 PM

Hey John...it's the "I'm Stan Olson, and, unlike you, I have a paid job to talk about whatever I want to on my blog" blog. If you don't care, don't read. You'll note the responses this blog has prompted.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Jan 19, 2008 1:54:35 PM

Who will go in do you think?

Posted by: Steelers fan | Jan 20, 2008 1:07:07 AM

Why is it that this paper has not produced a Panthers article in a week. I really don't care what jersey you would wear. This goes for all of you writers.

Posted by: Steven | Jan 20, 2008 8:59:25 AM

Richard Dent deserves to be in the HOF. One of the all time leaders in sacks---consistent--double digit sack man who not only put heat on the quarterback but also played the run exceptional. Don't tell me about Hampton and Singletary--hada hada hada...Lambert had Mean Joe Green and several others. Remember Dent had 4 sacks during superball 20. When he retire he was third on the sack list behind Bruce Smith and Minister of Defense

Posted by: Marty | Jan 20, 2008 10:21:18 AM

I agree, Dent deserves to be in the Hall.

Posted by: Tony F'ing Rowell | Jan 20, 2008 11:22:56 AM

Firstly, Steven, the Panthers season is over, and very little will happen with the team until after the Pro Bowl is played and free agency begins. As such, it's difficult to find things to say about them that haven't been discussed ad nauseum throughout the season. However, there was a Panthers article on Friday, entitled "Panthers should pass on run-oriented attack." There were also three articles Wed-Fri regarding Richardson's interview. Additionally, there was an article on the Panthers' QB situation on Tuesday and the backfield on Monday. Now maybe my counting skills are worse than yours, but that makes six as far as I can tell. Whine all you want about the Observer's coverage, but if the best you can bring is inaccurate statements, you might as well just go home and not come back.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Jan 20, 2008 11:58:59 AM

Actually, Jack Lambert and Joe Greene were on different sides of the field and Lambert was a linebacker and Greene was a Defensive Tackle. Dent had help from Dan Hampton and Mike Singletary so he should NOT be in the Hall of Fame.

Posted by: Trevor | Jan 20, 2008 9:05:13 PM

Procton,

Do you really think this coverage is good? Some BS articles on a generic interview with a owner who does not care about the fans. I know what Richardson would say before he said it. He held the company line that this organization is headed in the right direction. What I have to say to that is, wrong.

How about writing about the East-West Shrine Bowl? Marty Hurney is down there checking out some future "bad picks." The early entrance list is complete, can there not be an article on needs and players that match those needs.

Posted by: Steven | Jan 21, 2008 8:46:22 AM

Steven,

You are so right. This coverage is really bad. Thank you for turning me around.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Jan 21, 2008 8:48:40 AM

I agree with Procton... and the "generic interview" with Richardson?!? Richardson all but stated the coaching staff does what he says or else..."establish the run and stop the run." Now then, I remember a bunch of punks criticizing Fox for sticking to that and (because Pat Yastinksas said so) were calling for his job because of it. Wake up sheeple!!! Fox is a great coach in a bad situation, but he will come out on top regardless. It's owners that try to do everyone else's job they employee that should be criticized and reprimanded. Since you can't fire an owner, I recomend you people change your attitudes and support your team no matter what... if you want to have a team at all that is.

Posted by: SYRPIS | Jan 21, 2008 11:16:45 AM

I dont think it is so much about Jerry demanding that the coaches follow his philosophy. I think Jerry has an idea on the style of play his team should employ (be good at running the ball, stop the run, play good special teams) and he went out and hired a coach with that same philosophy in John Fox. Fox and Jerry share the same philosophy, its not like Fox wants the team to play one way and Richardson wants to play another way.

And for the folks that want a more open offense b/c you swear 'fox ball' doesnt work. Look at the Giants, a team that doesnt have to rush defenders b/c they apply enough pressure with the front four; a team that chooses to run the ball right at the defense to eventually set up the passing game. Its not the philosophy that is hindering the team, it is some of the personel.

Posted by: m | Jan 21, 2008 11:50:10 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.

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