For the second consecutive year, former wide receiver Terrell Owens was not elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
On Saturday evening, Owens revealed via Twitter that would not be enshrined in Canton, Ohio in 2017. With a career that spanned from 1996-2010, T.O. became one of the NFL’s most electrifying wide outs to ever play the game.
In each of his NFL stops (San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys,Buffalo Bills, and Cincinnati Bengals) he was a physically superior and gifted receiver who stuffed the stat sheet. His numbers alone warrant him receiving a bust in Canton.
A six-time Pro Bowler and five time first team All Pro, he caught 1,078 passes, scored 153 touchdowns, which is third all time, and accumulated 15,934 receiving yards, good for second on the all time list.
His impressive rsum was once again overlooked due to what has been characterized as the so-called disruptive antics that he created within NFL locker rooms. While controversial on the field, Owens was a model citizen off of it and never had any run ins with the law.
After failing to secure the 80% of the 48 sports writers votes, T.O. continued to vent on his snub, calling the voting a flawed process while also saying enshrinement no longer means anything to him. While T.O. may have caused distractions at some of his destinations, one thing is for certain: every team he was on became better because he was there.
His unrelenting work ethic was on full display in Super Bowl XXXIX against the Patriots when he had nine receptions for 122 yards on a severely sprained ankle and fractured fibula. His performance was a testament to his will, using a hyperbaric chamber to accelerate the healing process so he could play in the biggest game of his life.
The Hall of Fame is supposed to be about recognizing consistent greatness. There has been plenty of players who are already enshrined that did not have Owens’ combination of longevity, showmanship, prominence, and flashy statistics.
His passion for the game was never called into question, a trait all Hall of Famers should collectively share. If his only blemish is his controversial persona, he undoubtedly belongs amongst the greatest to ever play the game.
Without Owens in the Hall of Fame, the NFL’s highest honor will share the same tarnish that the Baseball Hall of Fame has with the exclusion of Pete Rose, the all time leader in hits.
Statistics are the measure of a great player. Men lie. Women lie. Numbers don’t.