Rodney Harrison makes the case for more Patriots Hall of Famers
The Steelers of the 1970s, which won four of four Super Bowls, put nine players and one head coach in the Hall of Fame. The Super Bowl-winning Patriots teams of the 2000s, which one three and appeared in another, will get their first Hall of Famer in two weeks. Former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison, who’ll soon join the team’s Hall of Fame, has a problem with that.
“People don’t think we have ballers,” Harrison told Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald, via NBCSportsBoston.com. “I’m like, Ty Law was the greatest defensive back I’ve ever played with. He’s one of the best I’ve ever seen. Richard Seymour, Willie McGinest, Troy Brown, Kevin Faulk, these dudes were, bad, bad dudes.”
Law has secured a spot in the 2019 Hall of Fame class. The others, including Harrison, continue to wait.
“They weren’t just system guys,” Harrison said. “It’s unfair when people say, ‘As long as you had Tom [Brady] and Bill [Belichick],’ well, dude, Tom and Bill can’t get it done by themselves. It takes a lot of really smart, great players. It’s just unfortunate. It’s almost a form of discrimination. People don’t want to elevate us, or recognize, or acknowledge how great we are, because they’re such haters. Everywhere I go, people hate on the Patriots. So we don’t get credit.
“All I hear is Tom and Bill. But that’s such a lazy analysis. They don’t see what the team really is, and that’s really frustrating because a lot of guys get cheated and don’t really get the recognition they deserve.”
Tom and Bill will surely both get to the Hall of Fame; they could get in separately for what they did prior to 2008, and for what they did after 2008. The real question is whether others who played with them -- along with owner Robert Kraft -- will get in. Unlike the team of the ‘70s, the team of the ‘00s and the ‘10s may not end up flooding Canton with bronze busts.