Terrell Owens decided to skip his Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Canton and hosted his own speech at his alma mater; The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. In his speech, that I’ve decided to paraphrase, Owens claims that the media punished him by keeping him out of the Hall of Fame the past two years. He wasn’t going to reward them by showing up to their sacred event. Owens took a stand against a system that gives writers the right to blackball players that weren’t nice to them.
Owens was absolutely right.
Let’s preface everything within this lens. I’m a massive Eagles fan and part of that is watching McNabb and T.O. absolutely destroy defenses during the 2004-2005 season. He’s part of the reason I fell in love with Philadelphia. I’ll always respect the fact that he worked tirelessly to play in the Super Bowl with a broken leg.
The other side of that coin is obvious, I have every reason to hate T.O. He derailed and Eagles team that could’ve been something special. He then took his talents to our arch rivals in Dallas and tormented us for years. He was a self-centered egomaniac who looked out for numero 81.
And that’s perfectly fine.
The only thing a player should be judged for when it’s time for Hall of Fame voting is what happens in between the lines and Owens has more than enough juice to have been a first ballot Hall of Famer. Randy Moss, was also inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend, made it on the first ballot. Let’s compare the numbers.
I’m not saying Randy Moss isn’t a first ballot Hall of Famer because he most certainly is. The point is that T.O.’s numbers are about even and had to wait two years before induction.
This incident could have been used as a moment of clarity for the writers. It could be used to look in the mirror and maybe reassess voting criteria and reflect on past transgressions against former players. Unfortunately, they’ve decided to go in a completely different direction. According to Mike Florio, the Hall of Fame is considering a TO Rule that would force inductees to commit to showing up before the final selection process is made. Their continued pettiness is tasteless but not surprising. People with power don’t give it up easily. In fact, they usually use more to get their point across. Don’t want to come to our event and give a speech? Fine, you’re not getting in the Hall of Fame.
If the writers kept that same energy with everyone we wouldn’t have seen Ray Lewis give his signature dance during the festivities because, you know, he lied to the police and covered up a murder.
Jim Brown‘s domestic violence accusations would still have him waiting in the wings for his jacket.
Lawrence Taylor‘s rap sheet has more inserts than the average person’s passport and yet his bust is still in Canton.
The goal isn’t to pass judgment on the above men. It’s to show that the writers have a keen ability to look over criminal transgressions but for some reason can’t give a pass to a guy who did a few sit-ups in his driveway.
Terrell Owens’ gripes against the committee are legit. Too bad his name has been dragged through the mud so much that people are paying more attention to the messenger and not the message.
Just how the writers like it.
@ me madads14
As always, thanks for reading.
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