ESPN came up with a list of the 50 players in the game most likely to go to Canton. They apparently have no idea what they are doing. After all Vince Young (!!!) came in 39th
Remember, this isn’t a list of best players; it’s who is MOST LIKELY to get inducted. At the top of the list is Brett Farve. Of course he belongs there. There is almost nothing he can do at this point, short of kitten juggling in Mexico, that would keep him out. He’s got almost no time left to undo what he’s done. He’s teflon.
This is pretty much where our agreement with this list ends. At number 2, they put Tom Brady. The logic seems sound, every QB with 3 rings was in on the first ballot. I still hold that if Brady strings together a run of mediocre years where the Pats don’t make the playoffs (and this will happen after this year), then Brady’s star will fade dramatically. He was carried to 3 rings early in his career and won 2 of the least deserved SB MVP awards. He is going to the Hall of Fame, but his candidacy rests only on those Super Bowls. He has no records, no stats, nothing else at all that recommends him. Therefore, I don’t think he’s quite the mortal lock. He could still undo his legacy on the field. And yes, I don’t think he’s ‘the best big game quarterback’. I think he had a great defense. I put him fourth. He’s very very likely to be inducted, but could still blow it. His chances actually improve if he gets hurt. If he plays for 10 more years and never wins again, it makes his early wins look like a fluke.
They had Manning at number three, which is where he should be, but Marvin Harrison should be number 2. Harrison’s dominance has been astounding. He is going to finish second or first in every significant receiving stat and has 7 All Pro Teams and 8 Pro Bowls. Marvin is beyond a mortal lock and well ahead of Richard (13 sacks in the last 3 years) Seymour, Ray (murder?) Lewis.
Richard Seymour has no business in the top 20 of this list. 5 Pro Bowls and 3 All Pro teams is nice, but those numbers are not even close to being Canton worthy yet. He may be a great player, but if the standard is likelihood of induction, he’s just not there.
LT is ranked way too high as well. See Davis, Terrell. LT is a great player, maybe the best player, but RBs in the NFL have a short shelf life. If he blows a knee tomorrow, will his record be more attractive than Davis’s? He needs a few more years of health, which is a dicey proposition for RBs in the NFL.
Vinatieri made the top 10 as well. If the question was merit, I’d be all for it. The question is likelihood. Only 1 kicker has made the HoF. Adam SHOULD be in, but I don’t think it’s a lock just because of the position he plays.
Freeney came in at 16th which I think is too high. The competition at end will be tough and he’ll need five more seasons like his first five before this ranking fits him.
Basically, the rest of this list is pure trash. They put AJ Hawk and Adrian Peterson on it, but left Jeff Saturday and Reggie Wayne off it. Obviously, any inclusion of Vince Young is laughable. We are currently formatting another edition of the Vince Young Files, designed to show why the hype on him is way off base. Actually the more I think about this list, the more I feel cheap and used for even commenting on it at all.