Carter brings Buddy Ryan and his wife into Hall of Fame with him


Hall of Fame receiver Cris Carter generated the bulk of the stats that put him into Canton while playing for the Vikings.  But the only NFL coach he mentioned during his Hall of Fame induction speech was the one from Philly who cut him.

In 1990, Buddy Ryan opted to give Carter the ultimate wake-up call at a time the player was dealing with off-field issues fueled by substance abuse.  Gruffly explaining that Carter was cut because “all he does is catch touchdowns,” Ryan protected the player even after giving up on him.

Carter called the decision the “best thing that ever happened” to him, and he shared what Ryan’s wife told the coach the night before Ryan made the decision.

“Don’t cut Cris Carter,” Ryan’s wife said.  “He’s gonna do something special with his life.  So Buddy Ryan and his wife, I thank you.  You’re going into the Hall with me tonight.”

Carter brought others into the Hall of Fame with him, from family to friends to the high-school coach who persuaded Carter that football, not basketball, was his future.

“Son, you have a better chance to be Lynn Swann than Isiah Thomas,” Carter, who was previously playing football only to stay in shape, said Bill Conley told him.

Carter never became Lynn Swann, whose place in Canton was cemented not by regular-season receptions but by four rings and a performance for the ages in Super Bowl X.  But Carter’s career numbers dwarf Swann’s, and Carter arguably had the best hands of anyone who ever played the game.

At least Swann got a mention during Carter’s speech.  But for the quartet of Hall of Fame teammates Carter played with in Minnesota (Randall McDaniel, Gary Zimmerman, John Randle, and Warren Moon), not a single player or coach from his 12 years in Minnesota was acknowledged.  Not any of the quarterbacks who threw him the ball the 10 seasons Moon didn’t, not any of the coaches, and not his notorious protege with Hall of Fame credentials, Randy Moss.

Carter said he always played on good teams, but the clear sense coming from his speech is that he now has a new team:  The Hall of Fame.

While they can’t win the championship he never earned on the field, the Hall of Fame will always be undefeated.

47 responses to “Carter brings Buddy Ryan and his wife into Hall of Fame with him

  1. Check it out:

    Andre Reed, 16 year pro, retired in 2000:

    13198 yards

    Cris Carter, 16 year pro, retired in 2002:

    13899 yards

  2. As a long-term Vikings fan, CC is a great player. Aside from that, a total dick. If not for Minnesota, its team, coaches, and supporting cast, CC is a drugged up washout. Stay classy, CC. You’re about as gracious as MJ of the Bulls on his enshrinement.

  3. It’s his night, an individual award in a team sport. Thanking who he wants to thank should be okay and not a headline of who was snubbed in HIS speech. Congrats CC on a great career.

  4. Obviously Carter feels he wasted his HOF career in the Land of 10k Trailer Park Cesspools and is ashamed of the lavender Larry fans as well.

  5. It kind of shows how big of a jerk CC is when he cant get any love from fans even on his Hall of Fame Induction Night. Congratulations CC you are also in the Hall of Fame of Arrogance as well.

  6. Very classy… Carter had his life in the balance and Ryan did the only thing that would fix him, at Ryan’s own expense…
    Carter knows that and recognizes it.
    Good on both of them!

  7. That loser didn’t deserve a spot in the Hall of Fame. How many Super Bowl rings does he have?

  8. Congratz CC, its been a great Vikings Run…

    2013 – Chris Carter
    2012 – Chris Doleman
    2010 – John Randle
    2009 – Randall McDaniel
    2008 – Gary Zimmerman

  9. So he thanks the guy who threw him into the ditch and deliberately ignores the team and fans who pulled him out?

    And this guy whines about disrespect?

  10. A truly sad night for the Hall of Fame. Jerry Rice, Fred Biletnikoff, Lance Alworth, Charley Taylor, Don Maynard, James Lofton, John Stallworth (to name just a few worthy WRs) and cris carter? Please. If cris carter is the standard for a Hall of Famer, the selection process can be streamlined – just induct whichever player has the highest stats in EA Sports Madden NFL. No mention of Randy Moss – the single biggest factor in carter making the Hall? Always a class act – what a chump!

  11. @ areujealous……your forgot to mention Carter’s 130 TD’s to Reed’s 87. Kind of a big factor don’t you think? He didn’t have a HOF qb throwing to him either. To all of you people that rip him for being selfish, take a look at where he came from as a kid a then wonder why he had to have that kind of attitude to get somewhere in life. He’s in the HOF for being a great receiver, who cares what anybody thinks of him personally. I wish you all the best CC, you were one of the best.

  12. “Not sure who 88 is but Carter was number 80.”

    #88 was born in Canton and is an All Time Great for the Vikings… Retired #88 Alan Page..

  13. Some of the responses are simply shocking. Carter thanked someone for providing the kick in the pants needed to change his life. This is a really great story so why all the downvotes?

  14. Uh, Gary Zimmerman went in as a member of the Denver Broncos, where he won a Super Bowl ring. You do remember what that is right?

    viksfaninaz says:
    Aug 3, 2013 11:45 PM
    Congratz CC, its been a great Vikings Run…

    2013 – Chris Carter
    2012 – Chris Doleman
    2010 – John Randle
    2009 – Randall McDaniel
    2008 – Gary Zimmerman

  15. Quadrys Ismail said it best recently that despite all of his Cris Carter’s greatness, he was still extremely selfish and it showed tonight. It amazes that he didn’t mention or give any props to any if his teammates from years past. Maybe that’s why he never won a Super Bowl… I remember watching him during his prime and when Randy Moss came along he always seemed more concerned with getting his numbers… Just my opinion…

  16. @youarejealousof6rings

    Andre Reed:

    1999 Doug Flutie
    1998 Doug Flutie
    1997 Todd Collins
    1996 Jim Kelly
    1995 Jim Kelly
    1994 Jim Kelly
    1993 Jim Kelly
    1992 Jim Kelly
    1991 Jim Kelly
    1990 Jim Kelly
    1989 Jim Kelly
    1988 Jim Kelly
    1987 Jim Kelly
    1986 Jim Kelly
    1985 Vince Ferragamo

    Cris Carter:

    1985 Tommy Kramer
    1986 Kramer, Tommy
    1987[c] Wilson, Wade
    1988 Wilson, Wade
    1989 Wilson, Wade
    1990 Gannon, Rich
    1991 Gannon, Rich
    1992 Gannon, Rich
    1993 Macmahon, Jim
    1994 Moon, Warren
    1995 Moon, Warren
    1996 Moon, Warren
    1997 Johnson, Brad
    1998 Cunningham, Randall
    1999 George, Jeff
    2000 Culpepper, Daunte

    Have an inkling before throwing down stats. I’ll do you one more…

    Jerry Rice:

    2000 Jeff Garcia
    1999 Jeff Garcia
    1998 Steve Young
    1997 Steve Young
    1996 Steve Young
    1995 Steve Young
    1994 Steve Young
    1993 Steve Young
    1992 Steve Young
    1991 Steve Young
    1990 Joe Montana
    1989 Joe Montana
    1988 Joe Montana
    1987 Joe Montana
    1986 Joe Montana
    1985 Joe Montana

    I would never say Jerry isn’t the best, but look at who he had throwing to him during his best days as a WR.

    NUFF Said

  17. Carter never became Lynn Swann, whose place in Canton was cemented not by regular-season receptions but by four rings and a performance for the ages in Super Bowl X. But Carter’s career numbers dwarf Swann’s, and Carter arguably had the best hands of anyone who ever played the game.


    Not for nothing, but Cliff Branch should be in the Hall of Fame before Swann and Tim Brown ahead of Cris Carter. The anti-Raider bias is alive and well on the committee.

  18. What are Carter’s post season stats?

    Andre Reed broke Largent’s and Monk’s records, both in the HoF.

    I am not saying Carter, Brown and Harrison don’t deserve to be in the HoF, just not before Andre Reed.

    Not putting Reed in is a travesty!!

  19. When guys like Lynn Swann played they didn’t pad their stats with 2 yd hitches and passes behind the line of scrimmage. They had to catch passes down field while being man handled until the ball was in the air, not against guys playing 10 yards off the line and not allowed to to touch the receiver. Teams ran the ball 40 times a game.

  20. Andre Reed should no doubt be in…..if he worked for ESPN it would be a done deal already……..whoever posted Tim Brown before Andre is a total idiot/tool

  21. “Carter arguably had the best hands of anyone who ever played the game?” I have never heard anyone remotely connected with football ever make that silly contention until now. Best mouth maybe.

    As for Andre Reed, maybe they can put the helmet he threw in the Super Bowl for a 15 yard penalty into the Hall of Fame.

  22. Why would Carter mention Moss? The big numbers CC put up were before Moss was in the NFL, Carter carried the Vikings for years with washed up QB’s. Cris Carter the ALL TIME best hands the NLF will ever see.

  23. Atta boy CC, have a great night, your induction is long over-due and it was an absolute treat to watch you play on Sundays throughout your career.

  24. I watched the speech, but was unclear on one point: if I rooted for the Vikings during Carter’s tenure, but didn’t really follow football in earnest until after he retired, am I in the hall?

  25. You obviously didn’t see all his one handed catches like Vikings fans. If you had, you’d know he had the best hands ever. You can question everything else, but not his hands.

  26. If the Viking fans on this site are the barometer for the overall attitude that can be expected from Viking fans in general, then it is no wonder he wants to separate himself. It must be bad if a self -centered egomaniac wants to disassociate himself from the superiority complexes that saturate the very fan-base he should recognizing. Thank you Chris. Thank you for telling the rest of the world what we already know, and nobody blames you.

  27. One thing to consider, for those of you mentioning that Reed had an advantage over Carter due to the quality of the quarterback throwing to him: Consider the offenses that both guys played in. Although Reed had a HoF QB throwing the passes, there were far fewer passes thrown in Buffalo during his tenure there. Proof courtesy of profootballreference:

    Buffalo offense 1985-1999: 7462 passes (497/season)

    Minnesota offense 1990-2001: 6487 passes (541/season)

    **I omitted Reed’s year in Washington and Carter’s years in Philly/Miami intentionally, as they didn’t spend enough time there for it to carry significant statistical weight**

    That’s 44 more passes per year, and since Carter was an exceptional receiver, it’s safe to say that at least 15 of those per year (and certainly more from 1991-1997, pre-Randy Moss) would go his way. I’m not saying that Carter isn’t a Hall of Famer; he most certainly is. It’s just a shame that Reed is being knocked for having “inferior” counting stats when his numbers were actually phenomenal when considering his production relative to the offense in which he was a huge part.

  28. The only other team that tried to claim CC off waivers was the N.Y. Giants.
    Bill Parcells wanted to claim him but the Vikings were awarded CC because of the worst record.

  29. First of all, CC has the right to thank or not thank anyone he pleases. He’s earned that right just as much as he’s earned his way into Canton.

    Second – For those of you that said he doesn’t deserve to be there because he never won a ring. That’s about the most stupid statement EVER. By that logic players like Dan Marino and Barry Sanders shouldn’t be in the HOF either.

    As for him “….only getting open because of Moss…”, Carter only played with Moss for 4 seasons (1998 – 2001). What about his other 11 of 12 seasons where he was open most of the time he was on the field?

  30. You seriously never heard Cris Carter mentioned for having the best hands ever? You look silly on that one bro. Nfl network recently did a show on the very issue the top 3 were Largent, Raymond Berry, and you guessed it C Carter number one. Fitzgerald was number 4 .

  31. carter’s grandstanding at the end of his “speech” was entirely contradictory to the supposed “you’re going in the hall with me tonight” BS of the rest of his speech.. what a tool…he sounded angry, petulant and childish, not to mention (oops) WR selfish…

  32. Brett Favre called and congratulated him, said the best that ever happened to the two of them was getting dumped by their old team and playing for the Minnesota Vikings.

    Congrats CC!

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