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#21 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 01:58 PM

1977 cowboys 4 leading rushers(includes rs)attempted 520 running plays. tom landry came from nyg...run first, dallas run first. drew pearson 48 receptions(18.1 per reception)..rs leads league with 7.26. pearson is quality, not quantity. that '77 cowboys team was actually pretty good. will drew ever receive consideration? hopefully, yet doubtful. with such a knowledgeable group involved in the forum...post the 10 best receivers not in the hof. criteria...retired, and make a case for each.


I guess I should not be so pessimistic, I was just think with Irvin and Bob Hayes in that voters might not want to recognize Drew Pearson. Question: Did Dick LeBeau play left corner after Lane and before Barney . . . pro football reference shows that, and I trust your knowledge more than anyone's. They also show him as a safety in 1972. Was that correct? That means he was a CB from 1960-71, right?

#22 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 02:22 PM

People who don't think that Little should be in don't know what they are talking about. For example. John Henry Johnson, the ex-Niner and Steeler, was the 6th leading rusher when Little retired. Little was the 7th, just a few yards behind. Johnson is in the Hall. And, it took him 3-4 more seasons to get his yards than it took Little. Also, John was usually on teams that had more weapons. Floyd was the only option in Denver for most of his career. I think that you guys listen too much to the mainstream media, who unfairly bashes Denver and gives too many props to the Cheatriots, the New York teams, and the Cryboys. I would watch less ESPN if I were you.

BTW, next year it better be Gradishar's turn. He should have been in 15-18 years ago.


Hey, come on. While I think Gradishar belongs, when you make comments like you do it hurts your own credibility. Let's focus on Little. You take a fullback like John Henry Johnson and compare him to Little. Then you seem to ignore other facts that have been pointed out and then you go for the "Denver always gets cheated" line, which is tiresome.

I simply point out this about Little: If he gets in then what about Larry Brown, Chuck Foreman, Lawrence McCutcheon, Lydell Mitchell, Abner Haynes, Jim Nance, Cookie Gilchrist, Don Perkins, Dick Bass? If the bar is lowered for Little then you have to let others in who are similar.

Okay. Little had one 1,000 yard season. He average 3.9 yards a carry. He was All-AFL once and All-NFL once. So that's two seasons of "All-Pro". He had "All-Star considerations" in 6 seasons, a few of them second-team all-AFC.

Foreman: 2x All-Pro, 5 Pro Bowls and in 1974 and 1975 he had MVP-type honors, offensive player of the year and the like. He had three 1,000 yard seasons and caught passes like a demon. He had 76 TDs. He had a 3.8 yard average.

Larry Brown: 2X All-Pro, was the league MVP. He had 2 1,000 yard seasons and also a 3.8 yard average.

McCutcheon: 1X All-pro 5 Pro Bowls. Had 4 1,000 yard seasons. 4.3 yard average.

You see, you can get the point . . . look them up yourself and then honestly ask if Floyd Little were a San Diego Charger if you would have the same passion as you do since Little is a Bronco. Have you ever commented on how these others are getting screwed?

When you say "People who don't think that Little should be in don't know what they are talking about." on THIS board you are being offensive. You can disagree and you can make your case, but people here (for the most part) know what they are talking about. There is going to be disagreements but these are well informed football researchers and historians. This is not some place to have partisan discussions. What I see here is Rams fans who will tell you McCutcheon is not a Hall of Famer or Broncos fans who say Floyd Little is not a better candidate than Larry Brown or Chuck Foreman. What I see is Cowboy haters saying Drew Pearson deserves consideration for the Hall of Fame. I see Viking fans who love Jim Marshall for his leadership, his toughness say that he does not belong in the HOF since he was only a 2-time pro Bowler and never made 1st team All-Pro. So, when you take shots at those who disagree with you remember, these are guys with a lot of knowledge and who won't compare Little, a halfback ball carrier with fullback John Henry Johnson who spent most of his career blocking. Most of the poster here know better.

I don't want to criticize you too much, all of us have gotten emotional and posted things we regret (I know I have). But, let's keep this civil. Let's debate, discuss, post facts, let's disagree with vigor but without personal shots. How 'bout it?

#23 Ken Crippen

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 02:27 PM

People who don't think that Little should be in don't know what they are talking about. For example. John Henry Johnson, the ex-Niner and Steeler, was the 6th leading rusher when Little retired. Little was the 7th, just a few yards behind. Johnson is in the Hall. And, it took him 3-4 more seasons to get his yards than it took Little. Also, John was usually on teams that had more weapons. Floyd was the only option in Denver for most of his career. I think that you guys listen too much to the mainstream media, who unfairly bashes Denver and gives too many props to the Cheatriots, the New York teams, and the Cryboys. I would watch less ESPN if I were you.

BTW, next year it better be Gradishar's turn. He should have been in 15-18 years ago.


We really do not need that type of tone here.

#24 GreenRider668907

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:11 PM

I simply point out this about Little: If he gets in then what about Larry Brown, Chuck Foreman, Lawrence McCutcheon, Lydell Mitchell, Abner Haynes, Jim Nance, Cookie Gilchrist, Don Perkins, Dick Bass? If the bar is lowered for Little then you have to let others in who are similar.


Agree completely. I grew up admiring Floyd Little and part of me would love to see him in the Hall of Fame. I've lived in Colorado and I know the enormous passion that Bronco fans have for # 44 - the first Bronco who seemed have real "superstar" quality. Prior to John Elway I think Little would have easily been considered the face of the franchise. However, I have to ask myself "Is Floyd Little in the same class wtih Jim Brown, O.J. Simpson, Earl Campbell, Eric Dickerson, Walter Payton, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders or John Riggins?" To that I would say no. Is John Henry Johnson in that same elite category also? My first reaction is to say no, but I never saw him play. That's what's fun about pro football research. Now I'm going to have to probe a little bit deeper.


Two questions:

1) If Little does get voted in would that improve the chances for Terrell Davis?

2) Has former Raider WR Cliff Branch ever gotten serious consideration for the Hall of Fame? With over 500 receptions in the regular season and numerous other memorable grabs in post-season play I would think he'd be a definite candidate.

#25 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:18 PM

Agree completely. I grew up admiring Floyd Little and part of me would love to see him in the Hall of Fame. I've lived in Colorado and I know the enormous passion that Bronco fans have for # 44 - the Broncos first true pro football "superstar." Prior to John Elway I think Little would have easily been considered the face of the franchise. However, I have to ask myself "Is Floyd Little in the same class wtih Jim Brown, O.J. Simpson, Earl Campbell, Eric Dickerson, Walter Payton, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders or John Riggins?" To that I would say no. Is John Henry Johnson in that same elite category also? My first reaction is to say no also, but I never saw him play. That's what's fun about pro football research. Now I'm going to have to probe a little bit deeper...


Two questions:

1) If Little does get voted in would that improve the chances for Terrell Davis?

2) Has former Raider WR Cliff Branch ever gotten serious consideration for the Hall of Fame? With over 500 receptions in the regular season and numerous other memorable grabs in post-season play I would think he'd be a definite candidate.


Cliff Branch has never made FInal 15. He's been on the "Preliminary list" which is composed of between say 70 and 110 names. He's never made the Final 25 (I don't think)

Terrell Davis, to me, is a better candidate . . . the MVP, the 2,000 yards, the SUper Bowl MVP and essentially a career-ending injury. If Little gets in I can see some votes saying "We already put one Bronco RB in, why didn't we put in the best one?". But I don't know that for sure,

#26 GreenRider668907

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:34 PM

Cliff Branch has never made FInal 15. He's been on the "Preliminary list" which is composed of between say 70 and 110 names. He's never made the Final 25 (I don't think)


Thanks John - that kind of suprises me. Maybe I've been watching too much NFL films... As a member of 3 Super Bowl winning teams, Branch always impressed me as a "prime time" receiver who regularly managed to get his share of big catches. I know he had a key drop early in the Sea of Hands game, but he did make up for it later with a big 72 yard td in the 4th quarter.

#27 JohnH19

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:39 PM

We really do not need that type of tone here.


I wish he was a Vikings fan stumping for Tingelhoff and Cris Carter. That would make for some interesting reading.

I never thought about Drew Pearson not being in the Cowboys' Ring of Honor. It's comes as a shock to me that he hasn't been been selected. He certainly belongs and I think a very good case can be made for his inclusion in the HOF. He was a terrific wide out with many signature moments during an era when the running game was still the preferred mode of transportation.

#28 james

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:39 PM

Cliff Branch has never made FInal 15. He's been on the "Preliminary list" which is composed of between say 70 and 110 names. He's never made the Final 25 (I don't think)


How come Cliff Branch has never made the final 15 or 25? I remember him as a kid and he was one heck of a receiver.
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#29 james

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:45 PM

I never thought about Drew Pearson not being in the Cowboys' Ring of Honor. It's comes as a shock to me that he hasn't been been selected. He certainly belongs and I think a very good case can be made for his inclusion in the HOF. He was a terrific wide out with many signature moments during an era when the running game was still the preferred mode of transportation.


I live in San Antonio and we are bombarded here with Cowboys stuff and games. Anyway, I too never realized Pearson wasn't in the Cowboys Ring of Honor. As much as I dislike the Cowboys he belongs in the Ring of Honor. Watching him as a kid, I remember him being a clutch receiver and he did make some big catches.
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#30 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:54 PM

How come Cliff Branch has never made the final 15 or 25? I remember him as a kid and he was one heck of a receiver.


I dunno. He was also All-Pro 3 times, which is high for a WR. But, it comes down to not geeting enough votes. The voters vote for other guys.

#31 bachslunch

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 04:19 PM

I dunno. He was also All-Pro 3 times, which is high for a WR. But, it comes down to not geeting enough votes. The voters vote for other guys.


I suspect Cliff Branch has never gotten to the HoF finalist stage for the same reason Drew Pearson, Harold Carmichael, and Harold Jackson haven't. They're all WRs, more or less contemporaries, with very similar pure counting and postseason honor stats who form a logjam. I'm guessing the HoF voters can't figure out which, if any, to elevate to HoF status and therefore none are getting in.

Personally, I think the HoF voters hold WRs to more stringent standards compared to other offensive skill positions and that these four should all be in the HoF.

This is also Branch's last eligible year as a regular candidate. Carmichael's was last year and Pearson's two years ago. Jackson in theory should be eligible as he was on a strike team active roster during the 1980's (didn't play, though), but I'm not sure anybody over at the HoF eligibility area realizes this.

#32 coach tj troup

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 06:29 PM

I guess I should not be so pessimistic, I was just think with Irvin and Bob Hayes in that voters might not want to recognize Drew Pearson. Question: Did Dick LeBeau play left corner after Lane and before Barney . . . pro football reference shows that, and I trust your knowledge more than anyone's. They also show him as a safety in 1972. Was that correct? That means he was a CB from 1960-71, right?

thanks john, dick lebeau was back-up right safety for the last 6 games of '59. nominal starter at RC for 60-61 with bruce maher. when LC lane finally retired, the lions tried a handful of LC's to play there(usually thompson), then Barney at LC for a decade. meanwhile LeBeau manned the RC through 1971. Have a virtual ton of game, and lion highlight film, and LeBeau ALWAYS played RC(60-71). his final season in '72 he rotated in at free safety, he was just past it. as for pro football reference and the espn encyclopedia...god bless both for trying, but there are a minimum of 100 errors, and probably closer to 200 errors on starting line-ups for the 50's and 60's...have offered to help both, has fallen on deaf ears.

#33 Ben

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 09:00 PM

How come Cliff Branch has never made the final 15 or 25? I remember him as a kid and he was one heck of a receiver.


I checked on this, and Branch did make the final 25 for the class of 2004, the year this stage of the process was introduced. He has not made it that far since. It is possible that Branch was one of the top 25 vote-getters in the years before that stage was defined, but that's purely speculative.

#34 Rupert Patrick

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 09:15 PM

Cliff Branch has never made FInal 15. He's been on the "Preliminary list" which is composed of between say 70 and 110 names. He's never made the Final 25 (I don't think)

Terrell Davis, to me, is a better candidate . . . the MVP, the 2,000 yards, the SUper Bowl MVP and essentially a career-ending injury. If Little gets in I can see some votes saying "We already put one Bronco RB in, why didn't we put in the best one?". But I don't know that for sure,


I agree Davis is a better candidate than Little. Four seasons over 1000 years including three over 1500 yards and a 2000 yard season, with a Super Bowl MVP award and was the guy who put Elway and the Broncos over the top and made them a championship team. Compared to Little, Davis has huge edges in Yards Rushing per Game (97.5 for Davis, one of the highest of all time to 54 for Little) and Yards per Run (4.6 for Davis against 3.9 for Little). Terrell Davis is in my opinion the greatest RB in Broncos history.

#35 26554

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 09:34 PM

Hey, come on. While I think Gradishar belongs, when you make comments like you do it hurts your own credibility. Let's focus on Little. You take a fullback like John Henry Johnson and compare him to Little. Then you seem to ignore other facts that have been pointed out and then you go for the "Denver always gets cheated" line, which is tiresome.

I simply point out this about Little: If he gets in then what about Larry Brown, Chuck Foreman, Lawrence McCutcheon, Lydell Mitchell, Abner Haynes, Jim Nance, Cookie Gilchrist, Don Perkins, Dick Bass? If the bar is lowered for Little then you have to let others in who are similar.

Okay. Little had one 1,000 yard season. He average 3.9 yards a carry. He was All-AFL once and All-NFL once. So that's two seasons of "All-Pro". He had "All-Star considerations" in 6 seasons, a few of them second-team all-AFC.

Foreman: 2x All-Pro, 5 Pro Bowls and in 1974 and 1975 he had MVP-type honors, offensive player of the year and the like. He had three 1,000 yard seasons and caught passes like a demon. He had 76 TDs. He had a 3.8 yard average.

Larry Brown: 2X All-Pro, was the league MVP. He had 2 1,000 yard seasons and also a 3.8 yard average.

McCutcheon: 1X All-pro 5 Pro Bowls. Had 4 1,000 yard seasons. 4.3 yard average.

You see, you can get the point . . . look them up yourself and then honestly ask if Floyd Little were a San Diego Charger if you would have the same passion as you do since Little is a Bronco. Have you ever commented on how these others are getting screwed?

When you say "People who don't think that Little should be in don't know what they are talking about." on THIS board you are being offensive. You can disagree and you can make your case, but people here (for the most part) know what they are talking about. There is going to be disagreements but these are well informed football researchers and historians. This is not some place to have partisan discussions. What I see here is Rams fans who will tell you McCutcheon is not a Hall of Famer or Broncos fans who say Floyd Little is not a better candidate than Larry Brown or Chuck Foreman. What I see is Cowboy haters saying Drew Pearson deserves consideration for the Hall of Fame. I see Viking fans who love Jim Marshall for his leadership, his toughness say that he does not belong in the HOF since he was only a 2-time pro Bowler and never made 1st team All-Pro. So, when you take shots at those who disagree with you remember, these are guys with a lot of knowledge and who won't compare Little, a halfback ball carrier with fullback John Henry Johnson who spent most of his career blocking. Most of the poster here know better.

I don't want to criticize you too much, all of us have gotten emotional and posted things we regret (I know I have). But, let's keep this civil. Let's debate, discuss, post facts, let's disagree with vigor but without personal shots. How 'bout it?


I don't really have much to add, other than to reiterate that I, too, think Gradishar is very deserving of induction into the HOF. 'Anti-Broncos' bias has nothing to do with why I (and probably anyone else here) don't think Little should be in.

#36 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 10:18 PM

I checked on this, and Branch did make the final 25 for the class of 2004, the year this stage of the process was introduced. He has not made it that far since. It is possible that Branch was one of the top 25 vote-getters in the years before that stage was defined, but that's purely speculative.


Thanks, I stand corrected. I simply didn't remember that he made the Final 25. I also think it is possible that he was a Top-25er before they added that as the "semi-final" Top 25 thing.

#37 John Turney

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 10:18 PM

thanks john, dick lebeau was back-up right safety for the last 6 games of '59. nominal starter at RC for 60-61 with bruce maher. when LC lane finally retired, the lions tried a handful of LC's to play there(usually thompson), then Barney at LC for a decade. meanwhile LeBeau manned the RC through 1971. Have a virtual ton of game, and lion highlight film, and LeBeau ALWAYS played RC(60-71). his final season in '72 he rotated in at free safety, he was just past it. as for pro football reference and the espn encyclopedia...god bless both for trying, but there are a minimum of 100 errors, and probably closer to 200 errors on starting line-ups for the 50's and 60's...have offered to help both, has fallen on deaf ears.


Wow, 100-200 errors?

#38 26554

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 10:22 PM

Has former Raider WR Cliff Branch ever gotten serious consideration for the Hall of Fame? With over 500 receptions in the regular season and numerous other memorable grabs in post-season play I would think he'd be a definite candidate.


I've said before that I think Branch has a better case than Ken Stabler does. I have to agree, though, that this...

I suspect Cliff Branch has never gotten to the HoF finalist stage for the same reason Drew Pearson, Harold Carmichael, and Harold Jackson haven't. They're all WRs, more or less contemporaries, with very similar pure counting and postseason honor stats who form a logjam. I'm guessing the HoF voters can't figure out which, if any, to elevate to HoF status and therefore none are getting in.

Personally, I think the HoF voters hold WRs to more stringent standards compared to other offensive skill positions and that these four should all be in the HoF.

This is also Branch's last eligible year as a regular candidate. Carmichael's was last year and Pearson's two years ago. Jackson in theory should be eligible as he was on a strike team active roster during the 1980's (didn't play, though), but I'm not sure anybody over at the HoF eligibility area realizes this.


...probably has a good deal to do with why he hasn't gotten farther than the semi-finalist list. You could probably also add Ike Curtis to the list. Really it is a very tough choice. Let's see -

-Branch: Selected to 3 Pro Bowls;3-time first-team AP All-Pro, 4-time Newspaper Ent. Assoc. first-team All-Pro. Career numbers - 501 catches, 8,685 yards 17.3 ypr and 67 tds over 14 seasons. Caught 14 passes for 181 yds. and 3 tds in the three Super Bowls he played in for the Raiders.

-Pearson: Selected to 3 Pro Bowls;3-time first-team AP All-Pro. Career numbers - 489 catches, 7,822 yards, 16.0 ypr and 48 tds over 11 seasons. 8 tds in 22 career playoff games;was selected to the NFL 1970s All-Decade team.

-Carmichael: Selected to 4 Pro Bowls, but was only named to an All-Pro first-team once by one of the major voting bodies (1973 by the PFWA) Career numbers - 590 catches, 8,985 yards, 15.2 ypr and 79 tds (still 19th on the all-time list) over 14 seasons;once held the NFL record for consecutive games with a catch (127) was selected to the NFL 1970s All-Decade team.

-Curtis: four time Pro Bowler; 2-time first-team Newspaper Ent. Assoc. All-Pro;Career numbers - 416 catches, 7,101 yards, 17.1 ypr and 53 tds over 12 seasons.

Then there's Jackson who was #1 in yards, catches and td receptions for the 1970s and #5 in ypr. He was also selected to five Pro Bowls and was a consensus first-team All-Pro in 1973 but wasn't named to the All-70s team.

How about Stanley Morgan? Led the NFL in ypr three straight seasons (1979-81); finished with 557 catches, 10,716 yards, 19.2 ypr (still 17th all-time) and 72 tds over 14 seasons.

Man. Tough, tough, tough.

Off the top of my head, I'd probably go:

1) Jackson
2)Branch
3)Pearson
4)Carmichael
5)Morgan
6)Curtis

But, really, there's not much separation between them, except maybe Curtis.

#39 Bob Gill

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 10:32 PM

>Off the top of my head, I'd probably go:

>1) Jackson
>2)Branch
>3)Pearson
>4)Carmichael
>5)Morgan
>6)Curtis

>But, really, there's not much separation between them, except maybe Curtis.

That's a good point, guys, and it probably helps to explain how Lynn Swann got in. Given this logjam of reasonably or marginally qualified guys with not much to distinguish one from the other, I can see how a few highlight-film catches in the Super Bowl could have put him over the top. I still think he was a poor choice (that is, in the sense that I wouldn't have voted for him), but the selection makes more sense in this context.

#40 coach tj troup

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 10:36 PM

Wow, 100-200 errors?

realize that sounds like alot, so for a moment, an area you are superb at...the math. 50's: 12 teams, 22 starters, 10 seasons=2,640 slots to fill. not as many errors in the 60's. example: '57 secondary of steelers...on page 849 of espn encyclopedia has LC as bruney, he was LS, LS is listed as glick, he was the LC, RC is listed as Butler, he was in fact the RS from 56-59, and alban is listed as RS, when in fact he was the RC his entire time in pittsburgh. one area of one team for one season and four errors. film does not lie.