Simeon Rice deserves Hall of Fame consideration

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During his induction speech on Saturday night in Canton, former Buccaneers linebacker Derrick Brooks called defensive end Simeon Rice “one of the best if not the best pass rushers of my generation.”

It’s high praise, especially coming on a night when another pass rusher from Brooks’ generation, Michael Strahan, was enshrined.  And it represents a far more diplomatic case for Rice’s eventual selection than Warren Sapp’s periodic rants that Rice, who rushed from the right side and faced left tackles, had a better career than Strahan, who routinely faced right tackles from the left side.

Of course, the dilemma could be solved by putting both in.  Amazingly, however, Rice hasn’t gotten serious consideration.

To get a bronze bust, a modern-era candidate first must be one of 15 finalists.  Before that, he must be one of 25 semifinalists.  Before that, he needs to be included among the nominees.

For the 2014 process, 126 players, coaches, and contributors received nominations.  Rice’s name wasn’t included.

Rice played 12 seasons, racking up 122 sacks.  In eight of his 12 seasons, he had 10 or more sacks.  (Strahan accomplished that only six times in 15 years.)  Rice also forced 28 career fumbles; Strahan had 24.

Strahan deserved to be enshrined.  Rice at least deserves to be considered.  Amazingly, he hasn’t been.

42 responses to “Simeon Rice deserves Hall of Fame consideration

  1. Simeon rice was a product of the team around him and i think some people still look at the pile of crap he was on the field his last couple of years when he completely gave up in Denver.

  2. Seriously. Again the media jumps on what’s popular. How about Kevin Greene first. Has anyone asked why of the top five in sacks, why Greene has been inducted? How is he different from the other four?

  3. The Hall of Fame is a joke and is about as relevant as the All Star Game. People are getting inducted with stats that are not what I consider Hall of Fame worthy. It is all a popularity contest. If it is based on actual stats then there a lot of worthy candidates that are not there and should be. Ken Anderson is a prime example of a player who has the stats, was an important player during his time and still maintained efficiency passing records well after he retired. He went to Super Bowl that he didn’t win but otherwise he has the stats to be in Canton. The mothership just 2 to 3 days ago was mentioning Tony Romo as an Elite QB and soon to be Hall of Famer when they were doing their reporting. Are you kidding me? Tony Romo? Not one season or one game in his career has he ever put the team on his back and carried them. The whole sham of the Hall of Fame is nothing but a popularity contest and nothing more.

  4. The problem was that Strahan was always the best player on his team’s defense. Rice was almost never the best player on his defense, and at times he was considered the 4th best, behind Sapp, Brooks, and Ronde Barber. But Rice should be a hall of famer, but he will be overlooked because his team was too good.

  5. They’re getting too lienent on many of the players getting in. It seems like if you made a name for yourself off the field, it means as much as what you did on the field.

  6. Simeon was nowhere near my favorite player (garbage of the field); but when it was third down on defense I was always watching simeon. Being A buc fan I remember Simeon was the primary reason the bucs would create turnovers. Either by forced fumbles or pressuring the QB to throw a bad pass. He was not the best overall defensive end, But he was the best Pass rusher in his day.

  7. Rice was a one dimensional player. Rice was not considered the leader on his team.

    Rice should be in the Hall of Good Players…. Not enough for the Profootball Hall of Fame

  8. Charles Haley.

    Tim Brown, and a half dozen other guys who played for Al Davis aren’t in because of the league’s long-standing beef with Al, which SHOULD be over by now, considering that Al is dead and gone.

    Andre Reed does not belong in the Hall of Fame. At NO POINT was he the best, or even Top 3 of WR in the NFL in any season.

  9. Agreed. When I think of HOF I think of players like Reggie White or LT, not the Simeon Rices or, no offense, Derrick Brooks. Both very good, but not Hall worthy.

  10. Not one player mentioned in the article is worthy of being in the Hall of Fame. The Ghost of Deacon Jones should descend from the heavens and cast his vengeance upon the Hall. But, all these players deserve to be in the Hall of Really, Really Good which is more than can be said for that abysmal disgrace, cris carter.

  11. Well dang florio put a couple of the comparative stats right there in the story. So if you wana base your opinion of numbers alone, if strahan got in, then rice should as well..

  12. 1980s Bears defenders in the Hall: Singletary and Hampton

    1970s Raiders defenders in the Hall: Brown, Hendricks and Haynes

    1980s Redskins defenders in the Hall: Green

    1980s Niners defenders in the Hall: Lott and Dean

    1970s Cowboys defenders in the Hall: Renfro and White

    Charles Haley is not in the Hall of Fame

    And people want to put Sapp, Brooks, Barber, Lynch and Rice in the Hall from a very good defense that won a single ring and strung a few good years together?

    Please.

  13. I’m not sure what the Hall of Fame wants to be. Basing a player’s worthiness on stats or his impact on the game during his career. There are guys with incredible stats not even considered and there are guys who had awesome showcase runs for 5 or 6 years enshrined. I know they want to keep the club limited, but with expansion and the increase of games from 12,14 to 16, there are players who’ll get passed over because they’ve faded from memory. I hate seeing some guy get in 23 years later because the league stats guy or a local reporter took a Thursday to review some old tape or scorebook. Why didn’t that guy get in 18 years earlier? He didn’t add to his stats during retirement. With so many more teams and players now, they guys from the past will slip further and further away until their 60 year old son will be accepting on their dead father’s behalf. Fix it NFL.

  14. Amen. Just because they talk about these all over Sportcenter doesn’t make them HOF worthy. Sapp, I suppose, but the others were all very good pieces of a strong defensive unit that had a good run. It seems that certain media have an agenda at who they want in the Hall. Like a previous poster said, Tony Romo, when he hasn’t done anything yet but compile stats? It just goes to show that it’s media driven, not truly legacy driven. Again, I respected the hell out of Derrick Brooks, but I think he’s just a cut below.

  15. Just to correct the list above: Bob Lilly of the Cowboys is also in the Hall, but that doesn’t change the point. I agree with the people here talking about the madness of the Romo discussion.

    The NFL should just cut out the noise and induct players based on their Madden video game rankings. That’s how you end up with mediocrities like cris carter. His bust should be a full-size Randy Moss cradling a tiny cris carter in his arms.

  16. How many guys are you gonna put in the HOF that won ONE Super Bowl? Rice and Lynch are bubble guys IMO. Barber, Sapp and Brooks are worthy.

  17. Rice…Are you kidding????

    His run defense was non existant…Guy was 1/2 a football player….selfish and highly undisciplined.

  18. In Arizona, Simeon Rice was one-dimensional. When he came to the Bucs and Rod Marinelli got hold of him, he became a complete DE.

  19. griddassassin, as a die hard Bucs fan I would have to agree with you 100% and although they only got that one ring Sapp, Brooks, and Barber are all top 5 at their positions.

  20. Rice was a headhunter on defense, and although he whiffed on the run at times due to overpursuit, he changed an offensive game plan. He just missed on so many sacks, he should have had more.

    He was also a demon in practice, really set the bar, I remember stories of him being tireless and not coming off the field during drills, saying “I can do this all day!”

  21. Rice has the numbers and impact, was good with Cards and great with Bucs. Complete DE too. Avg. sacks per season better than Strahan. Strahan good, played in NY.

    P.S. Derrick Brooks is a sure fire HOF. End of argument.

  22. Rice was an excellent player, but the NFL players who played against Strahan and Rice and the football reporters who covered both placed Strahan above Rice.

    Compare what players and reporters who had votes felt about Strahan and Rice.

    Strahan:
    * 2001 NFL Defensive Player of the Year
    * 2001 & 2003 NFC Defensive Player of the Year
    * 4x 1st team All-Pro
    * 2x 2nd team All-Pro
    * 7x Pro Bowl
    * 2000s NFL All-Decade Team
    * Ranked 99 in the NFL’S Top 100 Greatest Players
    * Pro Football Hall of Fame

    Rice:
    * Never was NFL Defensive Player of the Year
    * Never was AFC or NFC Defensive Player of the Year
    * NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year
    * 1x 1st team All-Pro
    * 2x 2nd team All-Pro
    * 3 Pro Bowl
    * Not on an NFL All-Decade Team
    * Not ranked in the NFL’S Top 100 Greatest Players
    *Not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame

    Strahan led the NFL in sacks twice. Rice never led the NFL in sacks. In Strahan’s 3 best sack years he had a combined 56 sacks. In Rice’s 3 best sack years he had a combined 47 sacks. For their careers, Strahan had 141.5 sacks and Rice had 122.

    Strahan was viewed by players and reporters as the defensive leader of the Super Bowl 42 champion Giants. No other Hall of Farmers were on that team. Rice was not viewed by players and reporters as the defensive leader of the Super Bowl 37 champion Buccaneers. Two other Hall of Famers, Brooks and Sapp, were on that team.

    It is very hard to argue that Rice was in the same class as Strahan as a player. Strahan seems to be well above Rice as a player.

  23. Strahan didn’t deserve to make it. He made primarily for 2 reasons:

    1) the sham sack record
    2)taking over for Regis and becoming a media star

    Starhan was a good/very good player. he is not an all time great. Sapp was right about him, he was a failure until he started getting matched up on the left side w/ the Jon Runyan types at RT.

    Strahan had just 6 double digit sack seasons in 15 seasons in the NFL despite facing inferior RTs the majority of his career. Rice had 8 in 13 and 2 of the non DD sack seasons came at the end of his career when he played half seasons.

    The Starhan overhype is ridiculous. He’s a media star, that should have been enough but they had to water down the Hall AGAIN. The HOF should be for the best of the best, true all time greats but unfortunately they let too many Strahan types in.

  24. Strahan stuffed the run as well as he rushed the passer. Whether Favre took a dive or not, 21.5 sacks is still ridiculous considering how much he was doubled that year.

    The outta town inferiority complex with New York is what’s ridiculous, not the non-existent “overhype” of Strahan.

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