Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

01 Feb 2014

2014 Hall of Fame Class Announced

Congratulations to Derrick Brooks, Ray Guy (seniors candidate), Claude Humphrey (seniors candidate), Walter Jones, Andre Reed, Michael Strahan, and Aeneas Williams for their election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Among the other ten names that made it to the room, Jerome Bettis, Kevin Greene, Charles Haley, Marvin Harrison, and Will Shields reportedly made the cut to ten. Morten Andersen, Tim Brown, Eddie DeBartolo, Tony Dungy, and John Lynch were eliminated in the first round of voting.

Posted by: Tom Gower on 01 Feb 2014

123 comments, Last at 27 Feb 2014, 11:49am by Noah Arkadia


by DavidL :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:27pm

About. Damn. Time.

by Mr.Steak :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:33pm

Really absurd that Reed is in and Harrison and Brown aren't. Nice that Ray Guy is in though I guess.

by JIPanick :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:39pm

Yeah, that's... weird. I thought Reed was clearly the weakest candidate of the three.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 9:12pm

Agreed. There is no reasonable way to argue that Reed is more deserving than Brown, and Harrison blows them both away.

by facw :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 10:20pm

Harrison blowing people away may be part of his problem.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 11:08pm


by Independent George :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:46pm


Seriously, though, I can't help but wonder if this is a clever way of avoiding a Marvin Harrison debate. If Brown goes in next year, I think both TO and Moss become eligible in 2015. They can just keep pushing him back a year while the unofficial story goes that they're just clearing the backlog of WRs, and hope people continue to forget about the homicide.

by RickD :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:04am

Harrison is taking his turn in the queue. Ditto for Brown. It's all about who's been waiting the longest.

by CBPodge :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 8:39am

Which it really shouldn't be. Harrison is clearly a better candidate. Reed never had consecutive seasons with 1,000 yards, 80 catches or 10 TDs (on their own). Harrison had 8 consecutive seasons with all of those things.

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:11am

CBPodge: do you really think its wise to do a direct linear comparison between 90s and 00s WRs without some kind of period adjustment? And while I can see the argument that Harrison may be the better candidate, what's wrong with taking seniority into consideration? If the committee thinks Reed is "above the bar" and deserving (and clearly they thought so), I can't see waiting around until a Seniors nomination needs to be wasted on getting him in. That's part of the problem with the big Senior backlog in the first place. For example, had Claude Humphrey been elected when he was regularly eligible (and they had three chances to do so), two other Seniors would have gotten a chance. And Ray Guy wouldn't have had to wait until now, taking up the other Senior slot -- they had seven previous chances to vote him in as a regular candidate.

by Michael19531 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:19am

I second that. The voters should be ashamed of themselves for putting in Reed ahead of Brown and especially Harrision.

You can't even use the championship argument. Reed has 0 rings while Marvin has 1. It's ridiculous. It really is.

by Lance :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 10:37am

I don't see what the fuss is about. Reed getting in doesn't mean that Harrison or Brown won't.

The real problem is that the HoF continues to limit each class to 5 players even though the league has grown considerably. We have and will continue to have a huge backlog of players waiting in the queue until the HoF addresses this.

I'm happy Reed got in now, because I fear that as the passing game continues to be favored by the rules people, receivers of previous eras will be looked at suspiciously as their numbers will look less impressive.

Even a quick glance reveals that Reed's numbers aren't as great as Harrison's. But this is, after all, the Hall of Fame and not the Hall of Stats or whatever, and when you're the star receiver on one of the league's most high-powered offenses and you go to the Super Bowl four times in a row, you are a good candidate.

I don't know if a lot of the "I can't believe this" crowd is under 30, but I suspect that they are and never say Reed actually play, nor did they watch ESPN and other football shows at the time to hear what was being said. But I assure you that he was, in his prime, spoken of as being a dominant wide receiver that other teams had to watch out for.

by dryheat :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:23am

Absolutely. While to me there's little doubt that Harrison was better, there's no need to denigrate Reed's career. He was an integral part of the K-Gun offense, was fearless catching over the middle, and was a legitimate All-Pro candidate in a career that was overshadowed by Rice and Irvin, as well as less consistent but occasional big years from guys like Sharpe, Rison, and Brown. I would've voted for him every year that he was on the ballot.

by Noah Arkadia :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:28am

I agree as well, though maybe Brown would have been my first choice.

The man with no sig

by dryheat :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:46am

Looking back at their careers I might agree. While it was happening though, I always felt Reed was better. To be fair, as a Patriots fan living in upstate New York, I saw a lot more of Reed than Brown.

by Will Allen :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 12:43pm

I'm glad Reed is in. I would have put Brown in first, because, like Cris Carter, he caught a ton of passes from guys who should have been back-up qbs, or out of the league. When you make the Pro Bowl, as Carter did, with a broken down 34 year old Jim McMahon, and a never any good Sean Salisbury throwing the ball, you've accomplished something very significant. Same with Brown, with Jay Schroeder.

by MC2 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:32pm

I assure you, I definitely remember the Bills offenses of those days and how tough they were to stop. But I also remember thinking then (as I do now) that the key guys (among the skill position players) were Kelly and especially Thomas, who I have always viewed as a sort of prototype for guys like Marshall Faulk. Reed, on the other hand, is a guy that I always saw as a good player who was lucky enough to be in a great situation. I certainly never thought of him back then as a future HOFer.

by Bobman :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 7:06pm

Agreed on the five people limit ENORMOUSLY and on Reed more or less.

It's a little sad that everybody "expects" guys to get in on the first ballot when there is a huge backlog, and we feel insulted when it doesn't happen. (I admit, as a Colts partisan, I initially felt stung and resentful that neither Dungy nor Harrison made it in their first shot.) Frankly, we should be surprised when guys make it in on day one because of all the other eventual inductees who have been delayed/postponed/snubbed before them. "First ballot" seems to be the new elite term for categorizing the HOFers into the merely all-time great and the super-all-time-greats with extra whitening power, more flavor, and x-ray vision! (sigh) It really should be the exception for the incredibly super-freaks. Maybe one every other year, in acknowledgement of the backlog that will never get any smaller and will only grow like a lake behind a beaver dam, until they bust that dam with a one-time class of 25 guys, or up the annual limit (it's a maximum, not a minimum! you can always vote in fewer guys!) to about 8.

Then again, I say this every damn year.....

by commissionerleaf :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:46pm

Dungy has to be thought of as a borderline candidate because despite his stellar record, he didn't actually coach very much compared to some of the greats. And a lot of his success, in retrospect, seems to be Manning-related.

by tuluse :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 10:39pm

Dungy won almost 100 games before he even met Peyton Manning.

by Daniel2772 :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 1:37pm

He played on, and later coached for the Steelers in the 1970s and 80s. He was the coordinator of some great Minnesota teams before he took over in Tampa and molded them into a contender. His continually getting passed over for head coaching jobs was a catalyst for the Rooney Rule. Not only was he a great coach, but from all accounts, he is a great person. I think passing over Dungy in the first ballot was an error. He is a credit to the profession.

by bachslunch :: Fri, 02/07/2014 - 4:29pm

While I definitely think Tony Dungy belongs in the PFHoF, I'm not so sure about "first ballot," given that the only coaches who as far as I can tell got such treatment were Noll, Shula, and Landry. That's amazingly exclusive company.

by LionInAZ :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 5:52pm

Marvin Harrison's success is more Manning-based than Dungy's.

by amin purshottam :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:32pm

Can't believe people keep saying Reed is not deserving. It was a different era firstly of all. Secondly, I like to see Marvin and manning for that matter play in the buffalo weather. If you have ever been to a game in buffalo after October, you would know how hard it is to play in that weather, heck even in September it can be rough. Reed is highly deserving. If a crapy QB like aikman can get in, a great wr like Reed deserves no less. Oh and for all those of you clamoring for Marvin, how do you explain his total disappearance in pretty much every playoff game he was ever in. Easy to put up great stats in a dome with manning throwing to you in perfect conditions. Sorry but Reed deserves it.

Amin purshottam

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:15am

Reed (and Michael Irvin as well) played on offenses with a HoF RB, which I think needs to be factored into the HoF case. I don't think that's the case with either Carter or Brown. Though I think all belong in the HoF.

by LionInAZ :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 6:00pm

Carter played a minimum 9 games per year inside domes (MIN and DET). I'd love to see his splits at Lambeau and Soldier.

by Guido Merkens :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:42pm

Can anyone explain to me why Andre Reed deserves to get into the Hall? Because looking at his numbers, I don't see it, even in the context of his era.

by CoachDave :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:52pm

Because when they put Art Monk and Lynn Swann in, it created such a screwed up HOF standard for WRs that they have no idea what the hell they are doing with the position.

Andre Reed over Marvin Harrison is borderline insanity.

Reed was a zero-time 1st team All Pro and the league in nothing ever in a 16-year stat compiling career.

Harrison was a 3-time 1st team All Pro...and led the league in TDs, yards and receptions multiple seasons.

The current HOF voters with regards to the WR position have no idea what they are doing.

by amin purshottam :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:33pm

No, you have no idea what you are talking about

Amin purshottam

by JIPanick :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:54pm

Because they still haven't gotten around to taking the HOF selection process away from sportswriters and giving it to RaiderJoe.

by Kevin from Philly :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 5:02pm

Which brings us to the question of Ray Guy, I suppose.

by Jay Z :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 10:08pm

Ray Guy is a lousy pick, but people are hypnotized by the resume. Yes, he was drafted in the first round. So what. He is playing 6-7 plays a game. How much better is he than the best punter in the league at any other time? Answer - he isn't. It's just a glamour pick, a guy with a resume and a memorable name.

by dryheat :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 10:53am

His spot in the HOF is roughly 97% directly attributable to John Madden having a nationwide pulpit after retiring from coaching. We believe Ray Guy to be the GOAT because his former coach has constantly told us he was, and who are we to argue?

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 8:51pm

If Ray Guy was so great, why didn't his teams win more than 1 Super Bowl?

by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 10:50pm

Guy played for three Super Bowl winners

by LionInAZ :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 6:23pm

I guess you don't think that field position matters. I think the current SB champions demonstrate otherwise. Special teams matter as much as offense and defense, regardless of time spent on field. It's ridiculous that special teams has so little representation. It's the bias toward QBs and RBs that's the biggest problem in the HOF.

It's the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Percentage of Onfield Snaps.

by Chuck Muncie Indiana :: Thu, 02/13/2014 - 12:25pm

I agree completely.

(WARNING: Liberal Arts-level of mathematical rigor follows.)

Last year, offenses averaged 10 drives per game, and teams averaged 5 punts per game. So, on average half of a team's offensive drives come off of punts. The league leader in gross punting average finished four yards above the league average. I'll assume that this is roughly the same difference between the league leader in net punting average and the league average.

If pinning the opposing offense an extra four yards back on half of their drives creates significant value, and the punter is responsible for creating that value (as opposed to having great coverage), and the punter performs at that level for a goodly number of seasons (say at least eight), I don't see why that punter should be excluded from the HOF.

by tuluse :: Thu, 02/13/2014 - 1:33pm

Is there evidence that Ray Guy consistently averaged 4 yards net punting over the league average?

by Chuck Muncie Indiana :: Thu, 02/13/2014 - 1:56pm

I was just trying to cobble together an argument for inducting punters.

What I've read (granted, just one article) and what I remember (granted, I was an elementary school kid back then) is that Ray Guy's net averages weren't anything special compared to other top-tier punters from his era. That being said, I'm a big HOF partisan and think it's perfectly jake that's Guy's going in.

by Chuck Muncie Indiana :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 7:51am

I always thought Dave Jennings was a better punter from Guy's era. Then again, perhaps watching too many bad Giants (and Jets) teams as an impressionable youth has permanently warped my judgment.

by dryheat :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 12:10pm

That's my point too. Guy was an consistent All-Pro type player at punter. But how do we compare him to other all-pro punters from prior and subsequent eras, guys like Dave Jennings, Rich Camarillo, Mike Scifres, & Shane Lechler, off the top of my head? We really can't. We can happen is the former coach of one gets a job on Monday Night Football and writes several books during which he proclaims Guy was the GOAT punter often enough that it becomes common wisdom.

by Raiderjoe :: Thu, 02/06/2014 - 1:44pm

Nfl films called R. Guy tghe top pinter while Madden was still coachi>; team. Obvuoulsy was all-pro before Madden become announcer and drooled when talkin about him during CBS games in 1980s

by Noah Arkadia :: Thu, 02/27/2014 - 11:49am

When I think punters, I think Reggie Roby. What a beast!

The man with no sig

by Bobman :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 7:23pm

I would, with absolutely no irony, endorse that move 100%. The voters don't know shit and are largely biased and dishonest.

Aside from a bit of a weakness for the men in silver and black, Raiderjoe sure knows his shit and speaks his mind.

by tuluse :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 8:08pm

How are selectors selected?

Mike Tainer who writes very thoughtfully, has a good understanding of NFL history, and knows how to use stats in the context of both teammates and eras makes Peter King look like a 10 year old selecting players because they're the "bestest".

Edit: No offense intended to 10 year olds. I'm sure there are many more qualified than the actual pro football hof selectors.

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:55am

The voters are "dishonest?" How so? And they don't know anything? Really? Agreed on Raiderjoe's positive traits, though -- I'm as big a fan as they come.

by tuluse :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:56pm

It looks to me like when Reed retired he was 5th all time in receiving yards. That seems impressive to me.

He also made 7 probowls in a row.

by CoachDave :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 9:04pm

Two-time Pro Bowler Vince Young agrees.

by RickD :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:12am

There's a huge, huge gap in between Andre Reed and Vince Young. It's so large that it's not worth arguing about.

by CoachDave :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 11:48am

Yea, that's what I was going for thanks for the clarification Spock.

I wasn't trying to point out that when Vince Young gets an "honor" like going to the Pro Bowl twice, it means the "honor" is pretty much meaningless...that wasn't my point at all.

You must be a blast a Super Bowl parties.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 9:13pm

If you look at his stats, those 7 Pro Bowls are a lot less impressive. He didn't even have 1000 yards in 4 of those seasons!

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:20am

He had 968, 945, and 913 in three of those four years.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 9:21pm

1988: Reed ranks 17th in the NFL in receiving yards.
1990: Reed ranks 13th in the NFL in receiving yards.
1992: Reed ranks 12th in the NFL in receiving yards.
1993: Reed ranks 23th in the NFL in receiving yards.

Reed made the Pro Bowl in each of these seasons, when he couldn't even crack the top 10 in yards.

by bachslunch :: Fri, 02/07/2014 - 4:33pm

As mentioned above, Reed's home field was a non-domed cold-weather stadium, and he played in an offense featuring a HoF RB. I'm willing to make some allowances for him given this.

by t.d. :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 8:49pm

ridiculous that reed made the h.o.f. over Harrison, and that shields is stll waiting

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:29am

Re Reed, he's been waiting the longes. Harrison gets in soon enough, likely within the next two years. It's no crime he's not "first ballot." And it's not unusual for guards to wait a few years before being elected -- Exhibit A is Randall McDaniel, who didn't get in until his second try as a finalist and third eligible year, and was a 1st team all-pro 8 times, went to 12 pro bowls, and is on the 90s all-decade team. Far as I can tell, only 5 guards have ever been "first ballot:" Jim Parker, John Hannah, Bruce Matthews, Gene Upshaw, and Larry Allen. Shields has been on the ballot for only three years, for cripesake. A little patience, please.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 9:19pm

Harrison deserves to be in over Reed. Brown is also more deserving than Reed, and now he may never get in with the glut of WRs coming down the pipeline. They still need to put Harrison in, and soon will have to deal with Bruce, Holt, Owens, Ward, and Moss.

I'm glad Williams got in though, I was afraid he'd be overlooked.

Ray Guy? Eh.

Shields needs to be put in ASAP.

by jonnyblazin :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 10:40pm

I'd say Harrison should definitely be in over Ward, and probably in over Holt and Bruce. So hopefully he doesn't have too long to wait.

But then again, I'd agree that he should have been in over A. Reed too, so I'm not sure I can rely on the selectors to make that evaluation.

At least Bettis didn't get in.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 11:09pm

I'm not worried about Harrison. I'm worried about Brown.

by RickD :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:07am

I'm fairly sure that we're seeing the resolution of the Carter/Reed/Brown gridlock that was jamming the WR position for a while. Carter got in first, now Reed, and Brown will be next, before Harrison.

That Reed has gotten in pretty much guarantees that Brown will, too.

by Jerry :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:42am

This. The committee is finishing the last generation of receivers before they start the more current one.

by commissionerleaf :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:52pm

On the current one, here's my take:

HOF: Moss, Harrison, Owens
HOVG: Holt, Chad Johnson, Bruce

The Greatest Show on Turf was made by Faulk and Warner. Holt and Bruce were very good receivers, but I don't see them as hall of famers.

by tuluse :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 10:45pm

Two problems with your analysis.

1) You didn't mention Orlando Pace

2) Bruce and Holt were both very good without Warner or Faulk being around. I mean Issac Bruce was leading the league in receiving yards with Tony Banks throwing to him, and Holt did the same with Marc Bulger.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 9:33pm

Derrick Brooks is without question my favorite player of all time, and, while it would have been shocking for him to not be elected on the first ballot, I'm still stupidly excited.

I may actually go to Canton for the ceremony.

by Raiderjoe :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 10:52pm

U shoudl go. Csnton very nice place to be on an induction weekendm

by Pied :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:09am

It's the good Canton, not the crappy Canton.

by Raiderjoe :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 10:56pm

Top six of the 15 finalists my opinion--
Brooks, Jones, Harrison, Shields, Strahan, Williams. Four of them grabbed the five spots, so that was nice,

Was in favor of Guy and Humphrey gettin in.

Like T. Brown over Reed but didn't think either need/needed to ve in. Think c. Branch and w. Wells (althouh ve ry,very short career) were better Raiders receivers

by MilkmanDanimal :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 11:00pm

I would have been absolutely happen with that six; for me, Brooks and Jones were no-brainers, and I still can't believe Shields isn't in. Strahan I have no problem with, just like I have no problem with Richard Dent in. Both were great players, but neither one is an utterly transcendent guy. Aeneas Williams was obviously an excellent player, kind of like Strahan in that he's not an all-timer, but certainly worthy.

At this point, I'm assuming Andre Reed is in the hall just so Lynn Swann and Art Monk have somebody to talk to in their "wait, seriously, these WRS are in the HOF" Thursday morning breakfast group.

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sat, 02/01/2014 - 11:11pm

Don't forget Stallworth.

by RickD :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:11am

Stallworth had a considerably longer career than Swann. Once Swann got in it was impossible to justify keeping Stallworth out.

Swann is in because he was one of the crucial players who made the NFL the #1 sport in America in the '70s. Four rings and a Super Bowl MVP (not to mention many SI covers) counts for a lot.

by Sixknots :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:38am

Yes, Swann contributed to the NFLing of America. Even if you never watched a game, just the name "Lynn Swann" brings to mind images of grace and fluid motion. And Swann was a very graceful WR. Otherwise, not hall worthy.

by Pied :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:11am

I like that argument, because it's the only thing that calms my rage when I look at his stats.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:49am

The fact that anyone thinks Lynn Swann is a Hall of Famer is precisely why Steve Sabol actually does belong in the Hall of Fame.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 12:27pm

This is an absolutely brilliant comment and could not explain the mythos of Lynn Swann any better.

by Bobman :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 7:19pm

"Yes, Swann contributed to the NFLing of America"

Arrrgh. I suppose that is true, and by that metric, Larry Flynt, Bob Guccione, Roger Corman, and Al Capone will be inducted into the American Pop Culture HOF next week for the indelible contributions they all made to contemporary American society.

by tuluse :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:18am

Mike Tainer made an interesting argument that Swann belongs in the HoF more than Stallworth.


The argument is basically Swann was better before the passing rule changes, and the 1970s were insane with how bad passing was. The Steelers won a Super Bowl with their leading receiver catching 30 passes. Look at Swann's two best years prior to the change. In 1975 there was a single receiver with over 1000 receiving yards, in 1977 there were 0.

by Lance :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 10:47am

I love this article and refer to it often. This is something every stats guy should read, especially the ones who love to parrot the "It's not the Hall of Very Good" argument anytime they don't think someone is worth of the Hall of Fame because they don't have the "right" stats.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:48am

Charlie Joiner is outraged he's not part of this club. He should actually be the chairman of it.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:52am

I don't hate Monk as a HOFer. I get the arguments against him, but Chase Stuart made a pretty good argument that he's basically the exact same player as Shannon Sharpe. The difference in perception is that one was called a WR and the other was called a TE, but in reality they had very similar strengths and weaknesses and played very similar roles in their teams offences with very similar effectiveness. And yet Sharpe is considered a no-brainer and Monk the Hall's black sheep.

by tuluse :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:07am

There is a solid argument that Art Monk is in as a WR-TE hybrid. If you compare him to Shannon Sharpe or more recently Jimmy Graham, they're basically doing the same things.

by CoachDave :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 12:12pm

Last time I checked...Shannon Sharpe and Jimmy Graham did and do a heck of a lot more than catch a crapload of 5-yard "out" routes for 16 years.

I'm sorry...but that WR-TE argument doesn't hold any water for me. Art Monk is easily the biggest "stat compiler" in the history of Canton...Sharpe, Graham, Gonzalez, etc. were and are legitimate game changing players that if you didn't and don't account for you will lose.

Teams routinely game-planed against the Redskins more to stop Gary Clark than Art Monk for God's sake.

If Art Monk didn't:
1. Play for 16 years
2. Play for a team that was a multiple Super Bowl champ
3. Was and still is (I'm assuming) a ridiculously nice man

...he doesn't get into Canton...

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 3:50pm

Monk's yards per catch over his career was 13.5 compared to Sharpe's 12.3. His YPC was also higher than Cris Carter. I think Monk's pretty borderline, but he did a lot more than "catch a crapload of 5-yard out routes".

by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:55pm

Some other players (besides Shannon Sharpe and Carter) whose career YPC is lower than Art Monk:

Marvin Harrison
Rod Smith
Keenan McCardell
Hines Ward
Larry Fitzgerald
Wes Welker
Tony Gonzalez
Antonio Gates
Jimmy Graham
Reggie Wayne (tied and trending downward)

I included Gonzalez, Gates, and Graham even though they are listed as TEs because they lined up outside just as much as Monk and they didn't block any more than he did. The knock against Monk for catching a bunch of short passes derived from people who think all WRs should be Paul Warfield. Monk's shorter routes compared to players from the 60s and 70s (though not short compared to modern players!) seemed somehow less impressive to them, but were actually the wave of the future.

by Will Allen :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:17am

Claude Humphrey was magnificent.

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 9:18am

Agreed, and I think it's a shame they had to wait this long to elect him. Humphrey should never have had to go to Senior status, never mind twice. Not getting him in until now among other things wasted two Senior slots that could have been used on other players.

by mehllageman56 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 3:56am

Upon hearing the 2014 Hall of Fame class and the Defensive Rookie of the Year vote, Warren Sapp's head just exploded.

by Alaska Jack :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:47am

Tim Brown:

He had the great Rich Gannon for a few years toward the end of his career. Otherwise, here were his quarterbacks:

* Jay Schroeder
* Jeff Hostetler
* Todd Marinovich
* Vince Evans
* Billy Joe Hobert
* Don Hollas
* Wade Wilson
* Marques Tuiasosopo
* Kerry Collins
* Rick Mirer

Here's what he did with them:

* NFL rookie-season record for most combined yards gained, with 2,317 (1988).
* NFL record 10 consecutive seasons with at least 75 receptions
* Shares NFL record for consecutive seasons with at least 5 touchdowns scored (11)
* NFL record for most consecutive games with more than one reception (147 games, 1993–2002)
* NFL record for being the oldest player with 12+ receptions in a single game - (36 years, 97 days): 10/27/02 @ KC Chiefs, 13 receptions, 144 receiving yards
* NFL record for consecutive starts by a wide receiver: 176
* #2 in NFL history for receiving yards
* 3rd in receptions
* 3rd in Touchdowns
* 5th in total yards
* No super bowls, but plenty of clutch receptions.

Not a Hall of Famer? Ridiculous.

lllll AJ

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 5:45am

You forgot Jeff George. I'd say Brown is the borderline or above Hall of Fame wideout to have the worst quarterback play over the course of his career. Maybe Cris Carter would have an argument, so would Larry Fitzgerald if you think he's that caliber. I've actually heard Hall of Fame arguments for Herman Moore and Joey Galloway based on how much they were able to get out of absolutely dreadful quarterbacks over the course of their careers.

by Michael19531 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:14am

He was a great punt returner as well. I would think that, along with the numbers above, would place him high on the HOF list

by Guido Merkens :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 10:38am

Having those stats is better than not having them, of course, but all those stats except one tell the story of a durable planet who never got injured and played for a long time. Having 75+ catches every year of his prime with a horror show at QB is impressive. But at no point in his career was Brown considered a top 5 WR.

by Mello :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 8:39am

Completely agree. It's a tragedy that Reed is getting in before him. Brown is the 3rd best WR of his era behind Rice and Irvin and did it with the QBs you listed.

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 9:23am

Mello says, "Completely agree. It's a tragedy that Reed is getting in before him [Tim Brown]." Er, no -- it's a tragedy when someone is killed by a drunk driver. Reed has been waiting longer and Brown's getting elected (and rightly so) soon enough -- likely next year. A little patience, please.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 4:42pm

I don't think Brown will make it (he should). THe fact that he got eliminated in the first round is a bad sign.

by bachslunch :: Fri, 02/07/2014 - 4:50pm

If Brown were at the end of his regular eligibility, I'd agree -- but he's nowhere near it. He's been a finalist all five years he has been eligible, and he's got 15 years left. Even if Harrison leapfrogs him next year, Brown has got a ton of time to go (14 years!) with no super-elite WR names on the horizon (Bruce, Holt, and Ward certainly aren't in the Rice/Harrison category, and while Owens and Moss actually are closer to being elite, they have other baggage). Carter got in on his 6th eligible year and Reed on his 8th, and I can see Brown being elected after about the same level of wait. I would be utterly stunned if Brown slides all the way to Senior status.

by MC2 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:09am

I pretty much agree with most of the comments here. If I were voting, I would have probably gone for Brooks, Jones, Harrison, Shields and Williams (although I don't have a problem with Strahan over Shields, especially with one OL already going in.

I actually think Reed is a worse HOFer than Swann or Monk, since those guys played in an earlier era, on conservative, run-first offenses. Reed, on the other hand, played in an offense that was notoriously aggressive and pass-happy, so he has no excuse for his mediocre production.

And the idea that the voters have to set up a queue for WRs just underscores the need for letting in more guys per year.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:31am

While I agree that Reed is a joke as a hall guy, his offense was not "notoriously aggressive and pass-happy". They only ranked top 5 in pass attempts once in Reed's time and were usually below the league average. Carter's teams passed a lot more and Brown's teams a little bit more in general.

by MC2 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 2:26pm

OK, "pass-happy" was probably a poor choice of words, but my point was that it was considered to be a very productive and explosive offense, hence the "K-Gun" nickname. In fact, Belichick first gained his reputation as a defensive genius by slowing down their offense in the Super Bowl.

Also, I was making the point in comparison to Swann and Monk. I agree that Brown and especially Carter played in situations more conducive to putting up big numbers.

For the record, I view Carter as a slam dunk HOFer (and the same goes for Harrison). Brown, on the other hand, is the epitome of a borderline guy. I wouldn't be bothered by putting him in or leaving him out. Reed, however, I consider to be, at best, a "close but no cigar" candidate.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 3:53pm

"In fact, Belichick first gained his reputation as a defensive genius by slowing down their offense in the Super Bowl."

Don't even get me started on that rubbish.

by MC2 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:01pm

Oh, I disagree with that narrative as well. The only reason I brought it up was to demonstrate how much of a juggernaut that the Bills offense was considered to be.

by tuluse :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 5:49pm

I'm not following your argument. Reed shouldn't be in because he was an integral part of a juggernaut offense?

by MC2 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:03pm

First, as I said elsewhere in this thread, I don't think he was "an integral part", but rather a cog in the machine. I think Kelly and especially Thomas were the "integral parts" among the skill players.

The reason he shouldn't be in is that, despite playing in a juggernaut offense, with a great QB, he was only able to post mediocre numbers, compared to other players who didn't have the fortune to find themselves in such a favorable situation.

by Will Allen :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:20pm

OK, off the top of my head, here are some guys the senior's committee need to look at.

Mick Tinglehoff; Five time First Team All-Pro. Not in primarily because once he was into his 30s, he got outmatched in the Super Bowl by some nose tackles who had 50-60 pounds on him. Dick Butkus, however, has said that Tinglehoff was the center who challenged him best.

Mike Kenn; Two time First Team All Pro, 5 time Pro Bowler, when that designation was more meaningful. A lot like Humphrey, in that, util ESPN and cable t.v. took off, playing for a usually bad franchise like Atlanta was a good way to remain unnoticed. He was great, believe me.

Bob Keuchenberg: primarily not in, I believe, because he's terrible with the media. Lot's of HOF defensive tackles had tough days against Bob Keuchenberg.

L.C. Greenwood; primarily not in because so many Steelers from the era made it. Now it will have to be posthumous, damnit.

Jerry Kramer; not in for the same reason as Greenwood.

Isiah Robertson; best linebacker (an underinducted position for the HOF) on some great Rams defenses.

Chuck Howley: a criminally uninducted linebacker. !5 years, 5 times 1st team All-Pro.

I'm sure there are some others.

by Raiderjoe :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:29pm

Sone others-
Cliff Branch
Lavie Dilweg
Al Wistert
Joe Klecko
Bobby Dillon
Lemar Parrish

by Raiderjoe :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 1:36pm

Of those enbtioned by us, like these five the best- tingelhoff, Howley, Klecko, Dillon, Parrish

by mehllageman56 :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 3:07pm

Thank you for throwing Klecko into the conversation, Raiderjoe.

by dryheat :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 8:44pm

Randy Gradishar.

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 9:42am

Good names to bring up. There are tons of strong Senior possibilities, of course. Besides Tingelhoff, Kramer, Greenwood, Kuechenberg, Robertson, Kenn, Howley, Wistert, Dilweg, Klecko, Branch, Dillon, and Parrish would also bring up: Verne Lewellen, Duke Slater, Ox Emerson, Riley Matheson, Duane Putnam, Dick Barwegan, Ed Budde, Walt Sweeney, Dick Stanfel, Gale Gillingham, Jim Tyrer, Dick Schafrath, Jerry Smith, Pete Retzlaff, Mac Speedie, Del Shofner, Billy Howton, Billy Wilson, Harold Jackson, Harold Carmichael, Drew Pearson, Ken Anderson, Gene Brito, Mark Gastineau, Tom Sestak, Houston Antwine, Randy Gradishar, Joe Fortunato, Maxie Baughan, Larry Grantham, Robert Brazile, Kenny Easley, Jimmy Patton, Johnny Robinson, Abe Woodson, Bobby Boyd, Cliff Harris, Eddie Meador, and Tommy Davis.

by Laverneus Dinglefoot :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:21pm

I'm not a Chiefs fan by any means, but I would argue strongly for Jim Tyrer and Johnny Robinson as well. I mean, how many first team all pros does a guy need to get into the HOF?

by MilkmanDanimal :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 4:57pm


--Andre Reed

by Laverneus Dinglefoot :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 10:20am

Well played, my friend. The voting process is a confusing animal.

by Shattenjager :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 12:16pm

And Troy Aikman, Warren Moon, Jackie Slater, John Elway, Harry Carson, Rickey Jackson, Roger Staubach, Elvin Bethea, Jackie Smith, Tommy McDonald, Dick LeBeau, Bob St. Clair, John Henry Johnson, Dante Lavelli, Mike McCormack, Alex Wojciechowicz, Wayne Millner, Red Badgro, Johnny Blood, Joe Guyon, and Jimmy Conzelman.

(Note that this is only AP all-pros. If you instead want only guys who were never named first-team all-pro by any organization listed on p-f-r, the list is instead Andre Reed, Roger Staubach, Elvin Bethea, Jackie Smith, Dick LeBeau, John Henry Johnson, Wayne Millner, Johnny Blood, and Joe Guyon.)

by barf :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 10:25am

I can't believe Otis Taylor isn't in the HOF. He would have been Jerry Rice if they threw the ball more in his playing days. He's the reason Dawson is in the HOF.

"I'm in a glass case of emotion." Mainly because I'm a Chiefs fan...

by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 6:59pm

Not against o. Taylor egtting in. Of course, was out of bounds when catch pass from l. Dawson in 1969 plyoff game vs Raiders. Horrible call by offiicials.

by justanothersteve :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 11:27am

I did not realize neither Tinglehoff or Howley are in the HoF. I agree that both belong. I knew about LC, Kramer, and Kooch and agree all belong. I don't remember the Kenn and Robertson.

by Mike B. In Va :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 5:26pm

While the Bills fan in me is happy that Reed got in, Brown is more deserving and should have got in first. That said, Reed will be the last of the "dynasty" Bills that gets in, and I'm actually kind of surprised he made it.

For those arguing about the Pro Bowl selections, remember that before 1995 the players and coaches were the only ones that voted - it wasn't a fan vote like it is now - so I think that helps Reed's case a little bit. However, Brown is more deserving overall, and Harrison proves that the writers carry their prejudices into the voting, since he (and Strahan) should both have been slam-dunk first Ballot HoF candidates.

All that said, him getting in isn't a travesty - he was very good and was the 2nd biggest threat on the team behind Thomas. Without the SB appearances, though, he doesn't get a whiff.

by tuluse :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 5:52pm

The fan vote hasn't really changed much in my opinion.

The bigger problem now is that so many player decline their invitation and the replacements get counted as having "gone" to a probowl. This happened for at least one of Vince Young's probowls for instance.

Voted to a probowl and playing in a probowl need to be counted separately.

by PatsFan :: Sun, 02/02/2014 - 6:17pm

Or just get rid of the Pro Bowl. Let people still be named to it, if you want. But no need to play it.

by Mr Shush :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 12:30pm

I really don't see Harrison as a slam-dunk Hall of Fame candidate at all, much less first ballot. For me, he's in a block with Bruce, Holt and Wayne - and probably a little behind at least Bruce - all of whom I regard as borderline. In a funny kind of way I also arguably prefer the very different career of Steve Smith. I'd be fine with any or all of them being in or out. Harrison owes a lot of his production to Manning and some of it to Wayne, and as someone else noted he invariably disappeared in the post-season. Moss and Owens are no-brainers; I believe Andre Johnson should definitely go in, and Fitzgerald probably. After that Megatron's probably the next clearly deserving man at the position.

by tuluse :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 1:36pm

They should all be in. The HoF is far too restrictive and makes really arbitrary decisions because of that.

by Duff Soviet Union :: Tue, 02/04/2014 - 7:40am

I'd say Steve Smith and Andre Johnson are both ahead of Bruce, Wayne, Holt and Fitz and about level with Harrison. I'd actually have Jimmy Smith ahead of those guys too.

by justanothersteve :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 11:43am

I don't have any problems with this class. I'm surprised that Reed was more controversial than Ray Guy. I think people here are forgetting it's the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Best Stats. Fans usually refer to the K-Gun in Buffalo as being centered around Kelly-Thomas-Reed in much the same way fans talk about the Dallas Aikman-Smith-Irvin Triplets. Reed, like Monk, is one of those guys I consider borderline. But it doesn't bother me that Reed went in, and I think you can make a reasoned argument that any of Reed, Brown, or Harrison deserves it first.

by Hurt Bones :: Mon, 02/03/2014 - 3:04pm

For curiosity's sake I made a list of WRs who had at least 4 top 10 DYAR seasons.

*indicates player has seasons before DVOA era that might also be top 10 seasons.

Jerry Rice* 10
Randy Moss 6
Tim Brown* 6
Terrell Owens 6
Marques Colston 5
Larry Fitzgerald 5
Marvin Harrison 5
Michael Irvin 5
Calvin Johnson 5
Herman Moore 5
Rod Smith 5
Hines Ward 5
Reggie Wayne 5
Andre Johnson 4
Andre Reed* 4
Chad Johnson 4
Isaac Bruce 4
Jimmy Smith 4
John Taylor 4
Torry Holt 4

by bachslunch :: Wed, 02/05/2014 - 8:49am

Congratulations to all who were elected -- I think all seven were deserving. Especially want to say to the PFHoF voting committee "Great work!" as they did right by the Senior candidates, elected worthy regular candidates, and got the job done with efficiency and minimal drama. This stands in stark contrast to the Baseball Hall of Fame voting, which slides further into irrelevant farce with each passing year. The differences could not be more pronounced.