Ray Guy is not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and neither is any other punter. And Guy is not happy about the Hall of Fame voters who, he says, don’t appreciate punters.
Guy told Yahoo Sports that when he’s around young punters, he feels badly for them because they’re playing a position that isn’t appreciated by fans and the media.
“I watch them and in the back of my mind I know you’re wasting your time because we got some stupid people who don’t understand,” Guy said. “Here’s a kid who’s got a dream of being a punter in the NFL, but you got people here who cut him down before they even get out of the chute. So what are you telling these kids? To forget about it? I guess it all stems around people just don’t understand the importance of a punter. They really don’t. Unless you played. You have to be in there. You have to understand every player on that team has a position or play to do. And all they do is drag and fuss about ‘well yeah he can punt and this and that and the other thing,’ but they don’t really respect that and they think it shouldn’t be alongside the other guys in the Hall of Fame.”
Guy, who was such a good college kicker that the award for the best punter in college football is named the Ray Guy Award and the Raiders took him in the first round of the 1973 NFL draft, was a seven-time Pro Bowler and chosen as the punter on the NFL’s 75th anniversary team. So if a pure punter were ever going to make the Hall of Fame, it would probably be Guy. But Guy says he has resigned himself to the fact that it’s not going to happen.
“I don’t think about it anymore,” Guy said. “I just go on. I guess that’s the way for the older vets, older than I am, who aren’t in the Hall of Fame. I know it bothers them. I mean they should be in the Hall of Fame. . . . It’s all politics, that’s all it is. It’s the same of everything in life. Everything comes down to politics.”
Whatever the reason, Guy is right: At this point, it’s extremely unlikely that he’ll ever be enshrined in Canton.