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Old 08-06-2011, 06:32 PM    (permalink
bearsfan_51
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Default Hall of Fame 2012 class

When I was in college I spent a summer interning at the Pro Football Hall of Fame working mostly through their library, but also doing a little work on the history of the selection process.

In spite of this, I don't have the sterling record at predicting enshrinement classes to the degree that I'd like. Nonetheless, here's my shot at predicting the top 5 players to get in next year (the last two spots are almost always the senior voters' representatives, which has basically become a lock for enshrinement).

This should be an interesting class because there don't look to be any first ballot guys (Will Shields and Bill Parcells having the only real chance), freeing up room to clear up the current logjam.

1) Willie Roaf- Tackle- 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-2005 Kansas City Chiefs

Roaf didn't make it in his first year of eligibility, but it's only a matter of time. He was on the all 90's and 00's team (an almost lock for selection), and was arguably the best tackle of his era.

2) Dermontti Dawson- Center- 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers

The HOF hasn't selected a center since 1998, and only two centers in the modern era have been selected (Mike Webster, Dwight Stevenson), but if I were to make a list of all-time great centers, Dawson would be 2nd or 3rd of all-time. He was a semi-finalist the last two years, he'll make it soon.

3) Chris Doleman- Defensive End/Linebacker- 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-1998 San Francisco 49'ers

Am I just trolling the Cris Carter supporters? I'm really not. The more people you listen to, the less surprised they are that Carter hasn't been inducted yet, and the less confident they are he will be next year either. Taking his spot as a token Viking, Chris Doleman is a really underrated player with 8 Pro Bowls, and more importantly 5 times All-Pro selection and induction on the all 90's team. Doleman is fourth all-time in sacks, ahead of Richard Dent. Cris Carter will get in eventually, but it looks like there is a wait on receivers.

4) Curtis Martin- Runningback- 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets

It's either him or Bettis, but I don't think both, not yet anyway. Martin is 4th overall, while Bettis is 5th. And although Bettis won the Superbowl, it's uncommon they vote in two players from the same team in one class. Dawson deserves to go first, and has been waiting longer.

5) Cortez Kennedy- Defensive Tackle- 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks

Kennedy was always unnoticed being on some bad Seahawks team in a corner of the country most people are unaware exists. But he was a dominant presence on the d-line, compiled great numbers, and won a defensive MVP (and was another all 90's player).

Still have to wait another year: Cris Carter, Will Shields, Jerome Bettis, Andre Reed, Tim Brown, Charles Haley, Bill Parcells, Bill Cowher


The best case I can make for Carter or Bettis this year is that the HOF would be concerned that my class above would be too "boring."
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Old 08-06-2011, 06:38 PM    (permalink
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I think Carter and Reed really should go in. I hate that Timmy has to wait some more but that's probably what's going to happen. I would like Bettis to get in before Martin..just my opinion though.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:03 PM    (permalink
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Roaf and Shields going in at the same time would just be epic.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:08 PM    (permalink
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If Curtis Martin gets in before Cris Carter I will lose all faith in this entire process.

And yes I have said this before.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:27 PM    (permalink
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Besides being a Vikings fan, why do you think that is? I think they have very comparable careers, but it's historically easier for runningbacks to get into the HOF than receivers.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:32 PM    (permalink
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Besides being a Vikings fan, why do you think that is? I think they have very comparable careers, but it's historically easier for runningbacks to get into the HOF than receivers.

I just think that Carter had the same kind of consistency while being less of a stat compiler than Martin. Martin wasn't really a gamechanger, he was always just solid but unspectacular. I know that Carter was always more of a possession guy but he still had years where he was among the best receivers in the league, and also was a part of one of the greatest offenses of all time in '98. I wouldn't mind if Martin got in eventually but I think it's too soon for him. He was always the kind of a guy who was going to get his numbers but you didn't really worry about him going off.

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Old 08-06-2011, 08:16 PM    (permalink
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Roaf and Shields going in at the same time would just be epic.
agreed, I loved both those guys, just great lineman. OL never get their due because they dont have any real stats, you have to watch to see their impact on the game. and lord knows thats a lot to ask of HOF voters.

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I just think that Carter had the same kind of consistency while being less of a stat compiler than Martin. Martin wasn't really a gamechanger, he was always just solid but unspectacular. I know that Carter was always more of a possession guy but he still had years where he was among the best receivers in the league, and also was a part of one of the greatest offenses of all time in '98. I wouldn't mind if Martin got in eventually but I think it's too soon for him. He was always the kind of a guy who was going to get his numbers but you didn't really worry about him going off.
i dont really like carter, and ive heard from people who know things that hes quite an arrogant *** in person.

But he definitely should be in over Martin. Like you said, martin was always just solid, never a guy that made your jaw drop or did anything too crazy. idk, its that wow quality that i think of when i think hall of fame, a guy who dominated at his position, not just solid for a long time.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:27 PM    (permalink
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I tend to think of Carter as solid but unspectacular as well (by HOF standards).

Also, to refer to Martin as just "solid" is unfair. From '95 to '05 next to Marshall Faulk (who was clearly the best RB of that era), I'd put he and Bettis as 2A and 2B.* He's always been underrated simply for being effective and not flashy.

*Though you could split that up with Terrell Davis dominating '95-'00 and LT dominating '01-'05
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:31 PM    (permalink
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Off topic and I don't know why this popped in my head but are there any HOF busts with dreadlocks yet? Because that would be sweet...
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:35 PM    (permalink
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I tend to think of Carter as solid but unspectacular as well (by HOF standards).

Also, to refer to Martin as just "solid" is unfair. From '95 to '05 next to Marshall Faulk (who was clearly the best RB of that era), I'd put he and Bettis as 2A and 2B.* He's always been underrated simply for being effective and not flashy.

*Though you could split that up with Terrell Davis dominating '95-'00 and LT dominating '01-'05
110% agree.

A lot of the arguements used against Martin can be used against Carter as well. They both deserve to be in the HOF. Does it really matter who gets in first?
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:37 PM    (permalink
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curtis my favorite martin!
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:42 PM    (permalink
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Roaf should be a lock. Kinda sad that he didn't go in last year, but dems da breaks for linemen.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:44 PM    (permalink
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Marshall Faulk, amazing playing.

Marshall Faulks' speech, no so amazing...
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:49 PM    (permalink
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Richard Dent was worse. Mentioning your college is fine, but nobody wants to hear about Tennessee State for 10 minutes. You'd think it was the college HOF.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:52 PM    (permalink
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agreed, I loved both those guys, just great lineman. OL never get their due because they dont have any real stats, you have to watch to see their impact on the game. and lord knows thats a lot to ask of HOF voters.



i dont really like carter, and ive heard from people who know things that hes quite an arrogant *** in person.

But he definitely should be in over Martin. Like you said, martin was always just solid, never a guy that made your jaw drop or did anything too crazy. idk, its that wow quality that i think of when i think hall of fame, a guy who dominated at his position, not just solid for a long time.

Carter definitely made some jaw dropping catches. I'd put his hands in the top 3 of all time for sure.

Granted if your looking for an completely objective opinion on Cris Carter you shouldn't ask me, but he was not just solid for a long time. He was consistently a top 2-5 receiver year in and year out. We're not talking about Hines Ward here.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:54 PM    (permalink
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I hope they replay the induction cuz I wanna see the speeches specially Shannon's.

I also agree Carter had some of the best hands ever. Top 5 for sure.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:56 PM    (permalink
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And Martin was consistently a top 2-5 runningback. It's not like Martin ever played with an elite QB (Bledsoe, Testaverde, Chad Pennington) or elite offensive lines, but he always put up great numbers, and was on some winning ball clubs (making a Superbowl, which is more than Carter's teams had done).

I don't necessarily think Martin is a better player than Carter, I think they are quite similar, I just think Martin is more likely to get in sooner.

If there's a player Carter is likely to replace on that list, it's Chris Doleman.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:57 PM    (permalink
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Or did you mean 2-5 of all time? Because a) I disagree and b) you really can't compare receivers in the last 20 years to the other 60 years the game existed.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:01 PM    (permalink
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I tend to think of Carter as solid but unspectacular as well (by HOF standards).

Also, to refer to Martin as just "solid" is unfair. From '95 to '05 next to Marshall Faulk (who was clearly the best RB of that era), I'd put he and Bettis as 2A and 2B.* He's always been underrated simply for being effective and not flashy.

*Though you could split that up with Terrell Davis dominating '95-'00 and LT dominating '01-'05

Well once again we're getting into the longevity thing. From 95 to 05 he was definitely second to Faulk overall. But on a year by year basis I don't think he was consistently a top 5 back. Was he ever actually a top 3 back in the league? I mean, his career YPC was 4.0 and he never got above 4.5 for a season.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:04 PM    (permalink
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Well once again we're getting into the longevity thing. From 95 to 05 he was definitely second to Faulk overall. But on a year by year basis I don't think he was consistently a top 5 back. Was he ever actually a top 3 back in the league? I mean, his career YPC was 4.0 and he never got above 4.5 for a season.
In 2004, his ypc was 4.6. He was 31 years old and led the league in rushing. (Oldest player in history to lead the league in rushing)
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:06 PM    (permalink
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Or did you mean 2-5 of all time? Because a) I disagree and b) you really can't compare receivers in the last 20 years to the other 60 years the game existed.
The only guys I'd rank clearly ahead of Carter are Rice, Moss, and Hutson (totally going off stories and stats on him obviously, but I'll give him the benefit of the doubt.)

Then there's kind of a cluster **** with guys like Largent, Brown, T.O, etc but I don't see how you can definitively take Carter out of the top 5. Which is part of my point here, can anyone make a serious argument for Martin as a top 5 RB ever? Totally off the top of my head Brown, Dickerson, Sanders, Simpson, and Payton take him out of the conversation entirely.

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Old 08-06-2011, 09:07 PM    (permalink
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In 2004, his ypc was 4.6. He was 31 years old and led the league in rushing. (Oldest player in history to lead the league in rushing)
4.6 then I guess I missed that. My point stays the same though.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:09 PM    (permalink
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4.6 then I guess I missed that. My point stays the same though.
Haha, I'm not going to let you screw Curtis Martin out of .1 ypc. :)
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:10 PM    (permalink
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I'm not sure season-by-season is all that relevant when it comes to the HOF, judging by history, voters don't seem to think so nearly as much as comparing overall careers.

However, he was in the top 3 in the following years:

1995 (1,487 yards behind Emmitt Smith and Barry Sanders)
1999 (1,464 yards behind Edgerrin James)
2001 (1,513 yards behind Priest Holmes)
2004 (1,697 yards 1st overall)

That might not seem like much, but keep in mind that Cris Carter was never in the top 3 in yards, often because for much of his career he wasn't even the best receiver on his own team. Guys like David Boston and Amani Toomer were, however, showing that year-by-year isn't really a great barometer.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:14 PM    (permalink
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The only guys I'd rank clearly ahead of Carter are Rice, Moss, and Hutson (totally going off stories and stats on him obviously, but I'll give him the benefit of the doubt.)

Then there's kind of a cluster **** with guys like Largent, Brown, T.O, etc but I don't see how you can definitively take Carter out of the top 5. Which is part of my point here, can anyone make a serious argument for Martin as a top 5 RB ever?
Largent is definitely above Carter. No way he's not by anyone who knows the game before 1980 (which is why fan discussions usually aren't worth much).

But you're also comparing apples and oranges, because the wide receiver position wasn't very important until the 1980's, so you're comparing 30 years of history vs. 90 years of history (and I'm still not sure I would rank Carter as a top 5 WR in the last 30 years).
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