The Crying Game

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The tears will flow this weekend when the NFL enshrines another group of Hall of Famers.  The speeches will be filled with emotion and the satisfaction that comes with the knowledge that you are now among the greatest to ever play the game.

There are also the tears that will come with listening to Michael Irvin run his mouth endlessly about how he received the same honor.  (I can come up with about 20 reasons why he didn’t deserve it as much as one of this year’s enshrinees, Art Monk.)

After the crying is over on Saturday THERE WILL ACTUALLY BE SOME FOOTBALL PLAYED!!!

Honestly, the game might not be much to watch since the Colts will be without Payton Manning when they play the Redskins but it will be actual NFL football for the first time since early February.  The real highlight of the weekend will be the induction ceremony on Saturday.

Here is a complete list of those being so honored in Canton, Ohio this weekend.

Art Monk – It’s about time!!!!  The voters finally got it right.  How can a guy wait this long to be put in the Hall of Fame who has 940 catches?  Something had to be wrong with the system or the brains of those voting.  This weekend should help remedy that.  Monk was always a classy individual who played the game the way it should be played.  He was hardly a media hound like many of today’s wide receivers.  He was just a great player who earned his right to be listed in Canton.

Darrell Green – 1983 may always be known as the greatest class of quarterbacks ever drafted but many will forget that the last player chosen in the first round that year was Darrell Green.  Speed was a part of his game but his skills were second to none.  It would be easy to argue that Green ranks ahead of nearly every corner to ever play the game.

Fred Dean – Not everybody reading this will remember Fred Dean.  That’s a shame too because the guy was an exceptional player.  He was quick off the line as a defensive end playing with both the Chargers and Niners to the tune of 28 recorded sacks – only sacks after 1982 were counted.  He had a career year in 1983 with 17.5 sacks including 6 in one game.

Emmitt Thomas – A great cornerback for the Kansas City Chiefs for thirteen years, Thomas had 58 interceptions in his career returning 5 for touchdowns.  Many remember the Jets win in Super Bowl III but it was the Super Bowl IV victory by the Chiefs that cemented the AFL’s place in pro football.  Thomas was a big part of that victory picking off one pass in helping to lead his team to an upset over the Vikings.

Andre Tippett – The Patriots stole Tippett in the second round of the draft.  He would go on to have 100 sacks.  Not bad for a guy who had to sit that long waiting for his name to be called.

Gary Zimmerman – The guys in the trenches are often overlooked but Zimmerman couldn’t be.  He made seven Pro Bowls and eight times was either first or second team All-Pro.  He was also honored by being named to two of the NFL’s All-Decade Teams.

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