Tag:2012 Pro Football Hall of Fame
Posted on: February 15, 2012 2:24 pm
  •  
 

Cris Carter: Modern-day WRs are 'not appreciated'

Cris Carter believes his numbers are good enough to get into the Hall of Fame. (US Presswire)
By Josh Katzowitz

Cris Carter might disagree with my assessment of how the Hall of Fame selection process should mostly maintain its status quo, but we agree on one aspect of the current state of voters --they’re having a tough time figuring out what to do with the wide receivers.

For the second straight year, the upcoming induction class won’t feature a receiver, even though Tim Brown, Andre Reed and Carter are all legitimate candidates. The problem is that the voters are split between Reed and Carter, and with an 80 percent vote needed to get a player in the HOF, neither have managed to siphon enough votes to top that requirement.

“I think the modern day wide receiver … his skill level is not appreciated,” Carter told Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin on WQAM radio in Miami (via sportsradiointerviews.com).” It’s not just about the numbers. It’s the ability to catch the football and put your talent on display. That being in the 1980s and 90s and you know I played in three different decades, so Mike people like yourself … people like Joe Montana, people have said things to me… when you all say something to me it really means a lot more. I can’t do no more. I appreciate what you guys are saying and doing everything, but I pleaded my case those 16 years I played in this league.”

Carter -- who had 1,101 catches, 13,899 yards, and 130 touchdowns during his career -- has better numbers than Tim Brown (Carter has less yards receiving but 30 more touchdowns) and Andre Reed. But as Carter says, it’s not just about statistics.

So, how good can he feel about his chances for the Hall now that he’s been rejected for the past five years?

“I felt good my first year,” Carter said. “I mean, I am the only person alive that’s eligible for the Hall of Fame that has 130 touchdowns that is not in it, so when you have a stat like that ... You got more touchdowns than Jim Brown and Walter Payton like…I mean I am not campaigning for the Hall of Fame, so for me the list doesn’t change every year. My numbers ain’t going to change. It’s just too much productivity over the time…like I have no argument Mike. I really don’t.”

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: February 15, 2012 11:17 am
 

Should the HOF selection process be tweaked?

HOF

By Josh Katzowitz

The night before Super Bowl XLVI and a few hours after the Pro Football Hall of Fame votes had been announced, the three Eye on Football bloggers walked back to our hotel, debating whether the NFL enshrines players in the best way possible.

Criticisms already had begun to pour in -- how could Bill Parcells not be elected, how could the selection committee leave out Cris Carter? -- and the three of us pondered the best way to fix the selection process (or if it should be fixed at all).

I believed the status quo, for the most part, was fine, but Ryan Wilson seemed to me the most open to change.

Since that time about two weeks ago, the floodgates of criticism have opened and a torrential waterfall of suggestions from fans and players have formed a maelstrom of condemnation in which hardly anybody can escape.

Which is why, in part, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, who has been a Hall of Fame selector for two decades and is one of the most-respected NFL reporters, is contemplating dropping out of the process altogether.

“I've been thinking of stepping down from the committee of 44 selectors. Many of you are right. Twenty years is a long time,” King wrote Tuesday. “I've stated my case -- in favor or opposed -- for many who've been elected and many who haven't. And I've thought, independent of the argument some have proposed for term limits for Hall voters, that maybe it's time for someone else to sit in judgment of these great players, coaches and league and club officials. Fresh voices are good things.

“In 20 years, sitting on the panel has gone from an honor to equal parts burden and honor. I never got in this for pats on the back. I got in it to try to do the right thing by my conscience. Sitting in judgment of the all-time greats is an often-intimidating job, because you realize you're acting as judge and jury to a man's career. When Chris Doleman got in this year, he said that night that the only thing better in his life would be when he died and met his maker. Don't think that's lost on me. It's an honor -- with a heavy weight attached. And the weight gets heavier every year."

Curtis Martin led this year's HOF class. (US Presswire)
But fans and players have criticized the process. When receiver Tim Brown didn’t make the Hall this year, he lashed out on Twitter. Other former players have criticized the fact that Carter still is on the outside. Some don’t understand why Cortez Kennedy made it in this year, and some can’t figure out how a five-time Super Bowl champ like Charles Haley didn’t.

Cleary, though, the toll weighs heavily on the 44 selectors, journalists representing each NFL market and other at-large voters, who have to elect at least four players (and leave out close to a dozen legitimate candidates) each year. I saw that in person the night of the election when I ran into a voter at the media hotel lobby and his eyes looked glazed and his brained seemed frazzled.

What should be done about the process? Anything? What would satisfy the general population -- who has began to see the selection process as unfair and, ultimately, incorrect? Anything at all?

Here are some of the ideas I’ve heard that the Pro Football Hall of Fame could choose to use in order to tweak the process. Some ideas, in my view, would hurt more than they’d help, but at least one is good enough to put into place immediately.

Term limits: Recently-elected Chris Doleman and Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio have championed the idea of getting new blood in the system every five years, and in theory, that’s not a bad idea. But in this day and age, when journalists move from job to job and beat to beat (and sport to sport), the number of long-time football writers will begin to dwindle. You look at the list now and you can see long-time NFL reporters like Rick Gosselin (from the Dallas Morning News), John McClain (from the Houston Chronicle), and Ed Bouchette (from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette ). I’d rather have them selecting the inductees, because they have perspective and can compare players across eras, rather than a younger soul whose institutional knowledge doesn’t go beyond the 1990s.

The Hall of Fame selectors have received criticism for not inducting Cris Carter (US Presswire)
In order to vote for baseball’s Hall of Fame, you have to be a member of the Baseball Writers Association of America for at least 10 years. Actually, I wouldn’t mind seeing something similar with football. But until then, term limits only limits the perspective the committee will bring.

Expand the vote: Admittedly, I like much about baseball’s Hall of Fame selection process, and the ability for a large group of people weighing in on the sport’s legacy is good policy for that sport. For football, I don’t see how expanding the voter pool will make the process any less cumbersome or fair. With the way the football committee is set up, each of the 15 finalists is presented by one voter and then the entire body debates that player. Say, for instance, you expand the 44 voters to 88. Then, you have a selection committee that has become twice as cumbersome and takes twice as much time to make a decision. Already, the process took seven hours this year to vote in the six members. Simply put, there isn’t enough time in the day to add that many more new people. And who says 88 is the right number anyway? What about 150 or 300?

If we’re talking about expanding the vote, then, we’re talking about scrapping the entire current system. If you want 300 people voting on the Hall of Fame, you have to go to a baseball-type system where you vote for the players you think are deserving and that’s it. No meetings, no debating. I think that could work, but logistically, in this system, there’s not a chance that could happen.

Add more variety: Why not add football executives or former players or living Hall of Fame members? The theory behind that idea would be to rid the committee of any perceived biases. But how does adding executives and players, who might have personal relationships to those up for induction, add objectivity to the proceedings? It doesn’t. Despite the idea that one person who has a beef against, let’s say, Cris Carter and keeps him out because of a personal vendetta, I really don’t think that happens as much as the public might believe. These voters take their jobs too seriously in order to upend themselves by making it personal. I couldn’t say the same for executives and former players who might vote in, let’s say, Carter because they’re good buddies with him. How is that any more fair?

Stop with the four-man minimum: I think the Hall of Fame might be better served with less inductees than with more. As it stands now, the selectors have to vote in at least four new members per year with a maximum of seven. I refer back to baseball, where if a certain class isn’t good enough, nobody gets in. There shouldn’t be a minimum requirement, because it should be hard to get into the Hall of Fame.

Make votes public: Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. The voters for the AP polls in college football and basketball are there for fans to see. Why won’t the Pro Football Hall of Fame allow its selectors to do the same? I know plenty of the 44 who want their votes to be made public knowledge. And if there is a bias among some voters, this might help dispel their desire to keep out the players they don’t like.

So, what am I saying here? Basically, I think the current format works. Despite all the criticism that’s heaped on the selectors, I’m not sure there’s a better way to get players inducted. I’m biased, of course, because I think journalists make the best selectors. They’re trained to be objective, and they’re trained to research, ponder and think about every possible angle before making a decision like this. I’m content with the system the way it is. It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty darn good nonetheless.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: February 4, 2012 6:10 pm
Edited on: February 4, 2012 7:04 pm
 

Curtis Martin leads 6 into Pro Football HOF

US Presswire

Curtis Martin (AP)By Josh Katzowitz

INDIANAPOLIS -- The official 2012 Pro Football Hall of Fame class is official, and center Dermontti Dawson, defensive end Chris Doleman, defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy, running back Curtis Martin, left tackle Willie Roaf and senior selection Jack Butler will be enshrined this summer.

That means Aeneas Williams, Cris Carter, Andre Reed, Charles Haley and Bill Parcells, who made up the rest of the 10 finalist spots, were denied in the final vote by the selection committee.

While the biggest stunner of the night was that Parcells didn't make the Hall* -- I think most media members collectively agreed that he was the one guy who would make it in -- this is another year with the committee not selecting a single wide receiver. Before the selection show ever began, Tim Brown showed his displeasure on Twitter, writing "Raider nation!! Don't bother to watch tonight they passed on me again!! In fact, no wrs made it again. Gotta get some of y'all in there!"

Martin, meanwhile, was ecstatic at making the cut. He said he didn't deserve to make the Hall last year with Marshall Faulk on the list but that he felt better about his chacnes this year.

"They are a different class," Martin said during a phone interview on the NFL Network. "This year, my chances were a little better. When it was winding down to the show got close to starting, I felt a different kind of nervousness than I did last year."

*CBSSports.com's Clark Judge makes the case that if the Giants win Super Bowl XLVI and Tom Coughlin gets his second title, that will hinder Parcell's chances.

And our colleague Mike Freeman explains that he's stunned by the development. "I'm not a fan of Parcells," Freeman wrote. "He treated many people in my business terribly and wasn't exactly a great human being but to me, in history, there are few better coaches."

Even though Parcells didn't get in this year, he'll get the chance to present Martin.

"That's not a big decision for me," he said. "It's simple. There's no one I'd rather have present me than Bill Parcells. That man has meant everything in my career."

Among those who didn’t make the cut from 15 to 10: former 49ers owner Eddie DeBartolo, Will Shields, Kevin Greene, Tim Brown and Jerome Bettis.

Here's more reaction from the class.

Chris Doleman: "I'm blessed to be in this position. I'm very honored. ... There was a moment when you go through this process where you're like, 'If it happen, it happens. If it don't, it don't.' But I tell you what, when they call your name, you're numb. There are times when you ask yourself why you're getting the short end of the stick even though you're blessed -- maybe you might have been overlooked -- but I've always had the respect of my peers and my family, and I tried to go out to play to that level."

As for who will present Doleman, he pointed to his son, Evan: "I watched LT's (Lawrence Taylor) son present him. I watched Walter Payton's present him. I was fortunate enough to have a son who can speak on my behalf."

Cortez Kennedy: "(Former Miami Hurricanes coach) Randy Shannon, my roommate at the University of Miami, he taught me how to get in shape and played mind games on me so I could become a better person. He was very instrumental in my football days."

Dermontti Dawson: "This is something my kids can take their kids to see, that you're enshrined in the Hall of Fame and immortalized where they can bring family from here on out to see what their grandad did. It's a great honor."

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: January 7, 2012 2:00 pm
Edited on: January 7, 2012 2:01 pm
 

2012 Hall of Fame finalists announced

Hall of Fame (US Presswire)By Josh Katzowitz

The Pro Football Hall of Fame has announced the finalists (15 modern-day players and two senior players) for the 2012 induction class, and among them are Bill Parcells, Jerome Bettis and Cris Carter.

The selection committee, made up of 44 NFL writers from each NFL market, will meet Feb. 4 in Indianapolis to whittle down the list to the inductees. The new Hall of Famers will be announced that day at 5:30 p.m. ET.

Here is the complete list:

Jerome Bettis (RB) 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers

Tim Brown (WR/KR) 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jack Butler (CB) 1951-59 Pittsburgh Steelers

Cris Carter (WR) 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins

Dermontti Dawson (C) 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers

Edward DeBartolo, Jr. (Owner) 1977-2000 San Francisco 49ers

Chris Doleman (DE, LB) 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-98 San Francisco 49ers

Kevin Greene (DE, LB) 1985-1992 Los Angeles Rams, 1993-95 Pittsburgh Steelers, 1996, 1998-99 Carolina Panthers, 1997 San Francisco 49ers

Charles Haley (LB, DE) 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys

Cortez Kennedy (DT) 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks

Curtis Martin (RB) 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets

Bill Parcells (Coach) 1983-1990 New York Giants, 1993-96 New England Patriots, 1997-99 New York Jets, 2003-06 Dallas Cowboys

Andre Reed (WR) 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins

Willie Roaf (OT) 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs

Will Shields (G) 1993-2006 Kansas City Chiefs

Dick Stanfel (G) 1952-55 Detroit Lions, 1956-58 Washington Redskins

Aeneas Williams (CB, S) 1991-2000 Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals, 2001-04 St. Louis Rams

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com