Tag:Don Coryell
Posted on: December 1, 2010 12:19 am
 

Top Ten With a Twist: Not yet HOFers

Fireworks fly during the 2010 Pro Football HOF induction ceremony (US Presswire).

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

The Pro Football Hall of Fame this past Sunday released the names of the 26 semifinalists that could be inducted into the HOF for 2011. Most of the names you know. You’ve watched them play. You’ve watched them win. You’ve watched them etch out fantastic careers.

Last year, you knew guys like Jerry Rice and Emmitt Smith were going to make their way into the HOF in their first years of eligibility. These players were some of the best of all time. It was no contest.

But each year, there are certain players or coaches or executives that are left out who deserve to enter the hallowed halls of the … well … Hall. This Top Ten With a Twist isn’t about the players you know who full well will be inducted into next year’s induction class, minus Prime Time. These are the guys who might not, but who probably should be.

10. George Young, executive: I wonder if Young’s enshrinement has been held off because his skills had declined noticeably late in his career (ie. when free agency was introduced to the game in the early 1990s). But there’s no denying that Young was the NFL executive of the year five times and the teams he worked for won three conference titles and one Super Bowl title. For an executive, he was pretty damn important.

9. Jerry Kramer, OG, Packers (1958-68): While he was a very good player in his day – as the three Pro Bowls, five All-Pro selections and the oodles of championships attest – he did the world a favor when he wrote Instant Replay in 1967, giving fans an inside look at what occurs during an NFL season and at coach Vince Lombardi. No, it’s no Ball Four by Jim Bouton (that guy never could get in baseball’s HOF, by the way), but Kramer’s impact on how the fans view the game is an important piece of the NFL’s history.

8. Steve Tasker, WR/ST, Oilers (1985-86), Bills (1986-97): During his 14-year career, Tasker started a total of 15 games. He never had more than 21 catches in a season, and he caught nine touchdown passes. But the fact he’s perhaps the best special teams player ever to compete in the NFL should give him a path to the HOF. He was a 5-foot-9, 180-pound gunner, and he was fast and lethal. He went to the Pro Bowl seven times, and he was named the MVP of the Pro Bowl in 1993. He didn’t make it to the semifinals this year, but that’s not surprising. Special teamers are not given their just due (see No. 1).

7. Andre Reed, WR, Bills (1985-99), Redskins (2000): Reed has gotten caught up in the WR numbers game. He’s been eligible at the same time as Michael Irvin, Jerry Rice, Tim Brown, Art Monk and Cris Carter, and I can see why it’d be tough to select Reed instead of those kinds of receivers. But you have to remember that Reed ranks ninth in career receptions all time and 11th in receiving yards. At some point, he deserves to be enshrined in Canton. Don’t expect it to happen this year, though.

6. Dermontti Dawson, C, Steelers (1988-2000): Simply put, he’s one of the greatest centers of all time. He made the Pro Bowl seven-straight seasons, and with his athletic ability and his knack for getting out in open space and making key blocks for his running backs, he changed the perception of what a center should be. He’ll probably become a finalist for the second time in as many years. One of these days, he should get the welcoming phone call.

5. Cris Carter, WR, Eagles (1987-89), Vikings (1990-2001), Dolphins (2002): Much like Reed, Carter is overshadowed by other receivers. He finished his career as the No. 2 WR (behind Jerry Rice) in receptions and touchdowns. He’s been passed by Marvin Harrison on the receptions list and by Randy Moss and Terrell Owens on the touchdowns list since he retired, but at some point, Carter should be in. It’s actually a little surprising that he’s not in already.

4. Don Coryell, coach: Yes, he wasn’t the originator of today’s modern offense – that’d be a combination of Sid Gillman, Paul Brown and various others – but his Air Coryell teams in the late 1970s to mid 1980s with the Chargers helped innovate the passing game we still see today. He’s already a member of the College Football Hall of Fame. Now, it’s time for him to join Gillman as the only two coaches to be enshrined in the college and the pro Halls of Fame.

3. Deion Sanders, CB/PR, Falcons (1989-93), 49ers (1994), Cowboys (1995-99), Redskins (2000), Ravens (2004-05) : The reasons why are obvious. Just look at the video below. This is his first year eligible, and there’s little chance he won’t make it in immediately.



2. Ed Sabol, contributor: Enjoy watching NFL Films productions? You like watching the behind-the-scenes spots of the players woofing at each other on the sidelines and your favorite coach’s pregame and postgame speeches? If yes, you can thank Sabol, who helped found NFL Films in the mid-1960s. How differently would we view – and think about – the NFL if Sabol hadn’t been such a visionay? That’s unanswerable of course, but the fact NFL Films plays a big role in an NFL’s viewing experience makes Sabol HOF worthy.

1. Ray Guy, P, Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders (1973-86): Simply put, Guy is the greatest punter in the history of the game. But there are no kickers enshrined in the HOF. That must mean they’re less important than anybody else, right? Well, we all know that’s not true. It’s time to get Guy into the Hall. He deserves it.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed .
Posted on: November 2, 2010 8:54 am
 

Wade Phillips hasn't been fired yet

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

A couple of different stories in today’s Dallas Morning News deal with Cowboys coach Wade Phillips and what will/could happen to his job.

In the first article, David Moore talked to some of the players who would be affected if Dallas owner Jerry Jones fires Phillips in the middle of this season (it seems like it could happen any day now, doesn't it?).

"It wouldn't do us good at all, not even a little bit," cornerback Terence Newman said. "I think everybody definitely respects Wade. He gets his point across. I don't think trying to change coaches will do us any good, especially when he's not out on the field. We are. We're just not getting it done. I can't put that on him. I put that on us."

Some of what Newman said is a little surprising if it’s true. Phillips doesn’t come off as a coach that’s universally respected in the locker room, though Newman said he does get that respect. He also doesn’t come off as garnering much respect by the front office. But he seems likeable, so he’s got that going for him.

"I just hate it for Wade because his job is so hard now," linebacker Bradie James said. "One thing I can truly say is he's been positive and consistent as far as how he approaches the team meetings with us all together.”

In the second story, Todd Archer explains that making somebody the interim head coach doesn’t always solve a team’s problem. Don Coryell in San Diego in 1978 made it work. So did Bruce Coslet temporarily in Cincinnati in 1986.

But in the past two years, four interim coaches have been hired. Only two, Oakland’s Tom Cable and San Francisco’s Mike Singletary remain with the team that made him an interim, and this very well could be the final season for Singletary.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed .
Posted on: July 13, 2010 10:16 am
 

Should Coryell be in the HOF?

John Madden thinks that Don Coryell should have a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. And he made that perfectly clear during his eulogy of Coryell on Monday at the memorial service to honor the former Chargers coach.

"You know, I'm sitting down there in front, and next to me is Joe Gibbs, and next to him is Dan Fouts, and the three of us are in the Hall of Fame because of Don Coryell," Madden said in quotes captured by the AP . "There's something missing."

Coryell was one of 15 finalists for the HOF this year, but he wasn’t selected. That’s a wrong that needs to be righted, said Fouts.

"I would not be standing here today if not for Don,” Fouts said. “But don't worry, he'll get in. The voters will get it right. Wouldn't it be great if we could have this type of celebration, this type of feeling, and move it to Canton, Ohio, one day?”

So, why isn’t Coryell in the HOF?

I talked last night to a HOF voter who told me that of all the finalists, the most letters of support came in Coryell’s name. But once the debate between the voters began, the road for Coryell to enshrinement grew more rocky. The reason: there’s still a big backlog of deserving players who are trying to get in, and the fact Coryell never won a Super Bowl is still a big sticking point.

“I think when you take a look at last year’s list, all 15 had a strong case to get in and no one would have asked why,” the voter said.


--Josh Katzowitz

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter.



Posted on: July 11, 2010 11:04 am
 

Memorial service for Coryell on Monday

Former coaching great Don Coryell, who died July 1, will be honored Monday at 2 p.m. PT with a memorial service at San Diego State’s Viejas Arena.

Among the scheduled speakers: Dan Fouts, Jim Madden and Joe Gibbs.

For a little more information, read this short piece in the San Diego Union-Tribune .


--Josh Katzowitz

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter.



Posted on: July 1, 2010 9:57 pm
Edited on: July 1, 2010 10:08 pm
 

Don Coryell has died

First reported by Sports Illustrated’s Jim Trotter, former Chargers coach Don Coryell has died. Here’s a report from nbcsports.com .

UPDATE (10:06 PM ET): The San Diego Union-Tribune now has a longer piece on Coryell.

--Josh Katzowitz

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter.


Category: NFL
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com