Eagles

Eagles

Nobody’s asked me, but if I were on the panel that selects the annual inductees into the Eagles Hall of Fame?

Here are some of the people I would suggest.

There are a lot of qualified candidates and nobody really knows the criteria or who picks the inductees or if there even is a panel.

But if they're open to suggestions, I have some!

And I made up my own rules.

In picking 10 glaring omissions from the Eagles’ Hall of Fame, I stayed away from players who haven’t been retired for more than five years (Trent Cole, Brent Celek, Jeremy Maclin) and (for the most part) players who were outstanding Eagles but weren’t here very long (Ricky Watters, Harold Jackson, Keith Jackson).

Here’s a list of everybody who’s already in the Hall of Fame:

Here, listed alphabetically, are 10 more who should be:

Bud Carson: The architect of the legendary Steel Curtain defense in the 1970s spent 1991 through 1994 as Rich Kotite’s defensive coordinator. Hiring Bud was the smartest thing Richie ever did. The Eagles had three top-6 defenses in four years under Bud, and the 1991 team allowed 221.8 yards per game, fewest in NFL history in a 16-game season and fewest in any season since the 1974 Steelers – coached by Carson. From 1991 through 1994, no team in the NFL allowed fewer yards than the Eagles. Carson was the only thing that held that team together during that span.

 

Marion Campbell: Combine Swamp Fox’s years as Dick Vermeil’s defensive coordinator – five straight top-10 defenses and two straight No. 1 defenses – with his play on the field – two Pro Bowls, including the 1960 NFL Championship season – and he’s a no-brainer. Campbell did not have terrific success as the Eagles’ head coach, but no way that should overshadow his tremendous work as an assistant coach and a player.

Herm Edwards: In addition to the iconic Miracle at the Meadowlands, Edwards was a terrific cornerback for the Eagles for a decade. Including postseason, he had 38 INTs from 1977 through 1985 – 4th-most among NFL corners during that span and tied for most in franchise history. And what a big-time postseason player. His 5 playoff INTs are the most in Eagles history.

Charlie Johnson: A defensive stalwart on the Dick Vermeil teams, Johnson made three straight Pro Bowls and two straight all-pro teams as a defensive tackle. He was a first-team all-pro during the 1980 Super Bowl season and is one of only four defensive linemen in franchise history to make consecutive all-pro teams. The others are Reggie White, Clyde Simmons and Jerome Brown. 

Asante Samuel: He was only here four years, but Asante made a huge impact, picking off 20 passes, plus two more in the 2008 postseason. He led the NFL with 9 INTs in 2009 and made three Pro Bowls. From 2008 through 2011, he had the 2nd-most INTs in the NFL. Samuel and Troy Vincent are the only Eagles to lead the NFL in interceptions since 1972.

Buck Shaw: Shaw took over an Eagles team in 1958 that had gone 11-23-2 over the previous three years. He rebuilt the roster, acquired Norm Van Brocklin and within three years had led the Eagles to the NFC Championship. His 1960 team went 10-2, won the NFL Championship, handed legendary Vince Lombardi his only postseason loss, handed Bart Starr his only postseason loss and won the Eagles’ last NFL title until 2017. 

Duce Staley: How on Earth is Duce not in the Eagles’ Hall of Fame? Like Swamp Fox, he could be in there both as a player and as a coach. Staley had three 1,000-yard seasons, caught 275 passes and ranks 6th in franchise history in scrimmage yards. On top of that, he’s been a high-level assistant coach for nine years under three head coaches. The Eagles have the 7th-most rushing yards in the NFL during his seven years as running backs coach, and Duce did a phenomenal job during the Super Bowl season getting the most out of Jay Ajayi, LeGarrette Blount, Corey Clement and Wendell Smallwood.

Tommy Thompson: In an era before the development of the modern passing game, Thompson threw for over 10,000 yards with 90 touchdowns, led the NFL with 25 touchdowns in 1948, led the NFL in passer rating in both 1948 and 1949 and quarterbacked back-to-back NFL Championship Game victories. He remains the only Eagle QB to lead the NFL in passer rating in back-to-back seasons.

 

Wes and Andre: Last names not needed. Wes and Andre are listed as one entry because every Eagles true fan link Wes and Andre together. They were teammates from 1983 through 1993 and started at safety together for most of the period from 1986 through 1993, terrorizing opposing backs and receivers with thunderous hits and setting the tone for some of the toughest, most physical defenses we’ve ever seen around here. Wes and Andre. Andre and Wes. They spent their careers here, and they have to go in together. Sadly, it will be posthumously. 

Norm Willey: Nobody kept track of sacks until 1982, but legend has it that Norm “Wild Man” Willey once tackled Giants quarterback Charley Cornerly behind the line of scrimmage 17 times in one game. Willey was a two-time Pro Bowler and an all-pro in his eight years with the Eagles. Football historians say that if sacks were an official stat in the 1950s, Willey would have been among the all-time NFL leaders.

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