Terrell Owens says he’s taking a stand over flaws in the Hall of Fame process

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Terrell Owens is not in Canton this weekend as he officially becomes a Pro Football Hall of Famer, a decision he says he won’t second guess.

Owens told Vaughn McClure of ESPN that he has his own reasons for having his own private Hall of Fame induction event away from the ceremonies in Canton.

“I understand why I made my decision,” Owens said. “I don’t expect everyone to agree with me. But again, obviously the criteria and the system put in place for the Hall of Fame in order for guys like myself to be inducted, there are guidelines that the writers, the sportswriters, are supposed to adhere to. It’s not, not being inducted the first or second ballot, but it’s about the process in which guys are nominated and ultimately inducted. There’s a flaw in that system. So this is not only about me, but it’s about the guys that went before me, that’s going to come after me. And I can make a stand for those guys so they won’t have to go through this situation.”

There may be flaws in the process of picking Hall of Famers, but if that’s the case, what better place for Owens to make his case than at the induction event? Why not attend the ceremony and include some thoughts about the process in his enshrinement speech?

Other Hall of Famers have used the enshrinement event to speak out about players they felt were snubbed. When former Steeler Lynn Swann was enshrined in 2001, he used the opportunity to press the case that his old teammate John Stallworth belonged in the Hall of Fame as well.

“This is the single greatest honor in my life,” Swann said in his speech. “The single greatest honor of my life. And, if this is the greatest hour of my life, then I would tell you at this moment, this is only a half-hour. It’ll be the greatest hour when I can stand and sit in that back row and John Stallworth is wearing a gold jacket making this speech.”

Sure enough, the voters put Stallworth in the Hall of Fame the next year. Perhaps if Owens were in Canton, he could talk in his speech about what he thinks the voters have missed in the past, and what they should consider in the future. Perhaps some of the players Owens thinks have been overlooked would get into Canton with a nudge from Owens.

But that won’t happen. Owens will be in Chattanooga, Tennessee, making a speech with no Hall of Fame voters present. He may think he’s making a statement, but that statement will fall on deaf ears.

80 responses to “Terrell Owens says he’s taking a stand over flaws in the Hall of Fame process

  1. Dear T.O.

    Football is the ultimate team sport. You were and are an example of a selfish player who does not put the team first. That is why your enshrinement was delayed. Great individual player, lousy teammate.

  2. Stop giving this guy attention. It’s what craves. He is only doing this to put the spotlight on himself even more, because just being elected to the HOF isn’t enough for this guy. I never could stand him even though he had talent.

  3. Everybody thinks they’re the new Trump. And like Trump, they are all chumps. Stand for nothing, fall for anything.

    If the process would account for character and integrity (italicize and bold both) for the game both on and off the field (in the locker room), this guy wouldn’t smell Canton.

    If he would have shut his trap and stayed in Philly, he would have been the next Rocky statue. Dope.

  4. Yeah it’s flawed system is his mind because many legitimate things about him were dared to be questioned; and like all bullies he just can’t understand that concept.

    If a system entails argumentation and debate and not an immediate crowning of he the next King, it’s a flawed system. Of course.

  5. Sounds like he’s taking a stand against himself….. great player but lousy teammate…… that in itself should of kept him out……

  6. if there is ever a Drama queens with bipolar disorders hall of fame, he will be a first ballot inductee.

  7. The other “Elephant in the room” is OchoUno/T.O./The “Real” 81’s disdain owing to the error of inducting The “Other 81”/Randy Moss on 1st Ballot. Stats-don’t-lie, and no wideout other than The G.O.A.T/Jerry Rice has been as productive as Terrell Owens. With good health and another three (3) years of production, no doubt that Dez Bryant and OBJ can both earn tickets on that bus to Canton, as well.

    To OchoUno/T.O, one of the NFL’s best TD celebrants… we miss you, we love you, and we’ll be sure to eat some popcorn in your Honor tomorrow. Props x 1,000!

  8. Kind of like some current players that think the rest of us need their advice on how to live and think.

  9. TO…..walks to the beat of a different drum that much is known. But there is something to be said re. the process at which players are selected. He certainly does have a point there.

  10. The Hall of Famer plays a hundred percent on every play and leaves it all on the field which is why Randy Moss is not a hall of famer in my book!

  11. T.O. Go away…. you were great between the lines………. outside the lines you tried to erase everything you accomplished inside the lines……
    I don’t think he’s a bad person…….. just doesn’t care about anything but attention

  12. PFT writes: “Owens will be in Chattanooga, Tennessee, making a speech with no Hall of Fame voters present. He may think he’s making a statement, but that statement will fall on deaf ears.

    exactly, and then he can go away again … for good.

  13. The HOF voters have an ego that equals TO’s. To say any less is silly.
    They need to purge the voters. Too much bias, too much ego and too many agendas. Tle process isn’t flawed, it’s broken. The fact that TO didn’t get in for the first ballot because they didn’t like him as a person highlights that. The fact that ALan Faneca, the best guard of his generation is still waiting, highlights that. It’s just a joke at this point. I don’t agree with much of what TO did, but with this I agree 100%.

  14. So ya’ll think that TO is “entitled” to be a first ballot HOFer?
    Since when is being an NFL HOFer an “entitlement”?
    TO needs to understand that this is not an ego contest.

  15. The HOF voting process is a joke. If a member of the voting media felt that you’d been frosty towards them then they use their personal experience to not vote for that guy. There needs to be a real HOF committee not made of sports writers and beat reporters. It’s time to take personal bias out of voting and select guys because of what they did on the field not because they didn’t give a certain guy an interview. I’ll never forget Paul Zimmerman saying that he would never vote for Ken Stabler for the HOF because of a personal bias. He should’ve been kicked off the committee for saying that.

  16. If he wants to take a stand, he should attend the ceremony and take a knee during his speech.

  17. The HOF Committee did a great job during last night’s game in including Owens despite his selfish position. Everybody gets to decide for themselves the degree of class they exhibit.

  18. By skipping his own HOF induction (and making it all about him), he validated every voter who did not vote for him when he became eligible.

  19. This guy should have never been inducted in the first place. Big deal if he has the numbers. This hall of fame should have included what you have done to the game and not about the always I. That TO always had and always will. He is no team man! Hope after the HOF we never will hear from this loser again!

  20. He’s already second guessing himself, thats why his reasons keep shifting.

    And you bet that if he was a 1st ballot guy, he would be in Canton.

  21. He’s already second guessing himself, thats why his reasons keep shifting.

    And you bet that if he was a 1st ballot guy, he would be in Canton, not Chattanooga.

  22. I’m not buying T.O. story of why he won’t attend the HOF ceremony’s Yes T.O. belongs in the hall of fame, and yes probably got overlooked due to his ‘me attitude’ for a period of time. But I think if T.O. attended the HOF ceremony, he’d just be one of the greats going in this year. That’s not good enough in T.O. mind. He’s still trying to stand out from the crowd and this is the way he chose. T.O. is still selfish player he was during his successful career in the NFL. He still hasn’t learned a thing about sharing!

  23. Hall of Fame is an honor that’s earned. If you act like a tool and bad teammate, that should be a factor. Sorry. You elevate your team, not cause drama.
    I see nothing wrong with factoring behavior into this.

  24. 20 years from now Owens is going to look back on his decision to not attend his HALL OF FAME induction and regret it.

  25. Life is a popularity contest, and when you’re a self-centered jerk most of your life, you shouldn’t be surprised when people sabotage you at every step.

  26. laxman1944 says:
    August 3, 2018 at 2:33 pm
    TO…..walks to the beat of a different drum that much is known. But there is something to be said re. the process at which players are selected. He certainly does have a point there.

    And no one will notice if he gets a nice hat. Had he been selected earlier there would be no empathy from TO for any other player.

    And yes, Jerry Kramer has a case, and class as well. Folks like TO (divas that is) have style and class confused. You can buy style, you can’t buy the other one.

  27. He may have something,, Brian Dawkins is a borderline HOF got in pretty easy and early ,that’s because rain was a gentleman off the field with the media ,,TO first ballot HOF but TO was shall we say different off the field !

  28. There will be more media that shows up for the speech than the public. Too bad…I mean the public has it right and the media gives this guy too many watts of the public spotlight.

  29. until he reconciles his personal mental and emotional demons he’ll always be this way. his deep seated hurt is real and most of his critics can’t understand that. he’s insecure to the point of illogic. he needs to understand that he needs counseling to help release that pain. he will regret this once he comes into the knowledge and understanding of his lifelong asocial behavior.

  30. Taking a stand would be refusing any participation. He’s right that there’s flaws (look at this class – Kramer has waited way too long, TO should have been first ballot, and Ray Lewis was involved in covering up two killings). But, he’s not really taking a stand – he’s just trying to make it about him.

  31. Does anyone else think that sports writers and other media should NOT be part of the voting process? I’ve always found that kind of ridiculous. In my opinion, only those that have had experience in the NFL as players, coaches, etc should be allowed to vote.

  32. It’s so Ironic that the article mentions perhaps the least deserving WR in the HOF. Whatever would the football world have done without Lynn Swann’s whopping 336 receptions over 9 years?

  33. The fact that T.O. won’t stop talking about this or himself is the reason why it took so long for him to be voted in. No doubt, the man was a great player with majors skills, but if you are a selfish, crappy teammate, what good is any of it? He certainly doesn’t have any rings to show for it.

  34. I’m behind Terrrell Owens 100 percent. TO should have been first ballot. There’s only one WR in the history of the league that has better overall stats.

    There’s a lot of GREAT players that’s not in the NFL Hall of Fame. Especially Roger Craig. Let’s not even talk about what Roger Craig did as a Halfback. Let’s talk about Roger Craig did as a Fullback.

    Roger Craig played 5 season at Fullback and had over 8000 yards rushing and over 4000 yards receiving. He had more rushing yards in 5 seasons as a FB than Hall of Fame FB Larry Csonka had in 11 seasons . Had more receiving yards in one season than Larry Csonka had in his whole career.

    The first RB to have 1000 yards rushing and receiving(did this as Fullback). The first RB to have over 90 catches in a season(did this as a FB). The first RB to make pro bowl as a HB and FB, the first RB to score 3 TDs in a Super Bowl and not only did he revolutionize the RB position with his play, he also revolutionized the game with his off season workout regimen, and he’s s THREE TIME CHAMPION.

    Roger Craig is the epitome of a Hall of Famer, and he’s not in the Hall of Fame, but Larry Csonka is….gimme a break.

  35. Saints Day says:
    August 3, 2018 at 3:41 pm
    Does anyone else think that sports writers and other media should NOT be part of the voting process? I’ve always found that kind of ridiculous. In my opinion, only those that have had experience in the NFL as players, coaches, etc should be allowed to vote.

    ——-

    This. For example, Peter King is a great writer but no, he shouldn’t have a vote.

  36. Cliff Branch has HOF worthy numbers and a three time Superbowl champ… can’t get the votes needed…what has he ever done wrong…I agree that the system is flawed…

  37. TO resents not being inducted as soon as he became eligible. He resents people not voting for him because of his attitude, because he was a troublemaker and he caused problems for his head coaches. He thinks that anyone who has good enough stats should be automatically inducted, and behavior on or off the field should be a non-issue.

  38. He’s being a bit of a baby. HOF is an honor. And he’s a little out there. But I see his point. Owens and Ross have almost identical stats. Owens played well in a SBOWL ON a broken leg. Moss dogged at times, and nobody argues about

  39. To the point about Randy–you are right. TO never walked off a field pouting before the game had ended. Moss did it twice. TO did some silly things, but he never rubbed his behind on an opponents goal post, after mimicking pulling his pants down. Because Randy has been on TV and is all smiles and good feels, people forget his awful attitude and behavior. Plus, he never stopped whining about the Cowboys not drafting him. Never. Even last night it was indirectly discussed. Dude, that was long ago, so what you didn’t get picked by them, we have all heard enough about it, plus he and Culpepper torched Dallas back in the day. I worked there and recall seeing it in person, the dude was a freak and Dallas was bad, real bad during that time. (Dave Campo, David Shula years, yikes!)

  40. Dear PFT Posters,

    Do you “like” every HOF player? O.J. Simpson, Charles Haley ect. No. You think Brian Urlacher deserves a first ballet induction and Owens doesn’t? No. (I don’t think he is even a HOF player)..So stop the hate and personal feelings about TO! Plenty of team members loved the guy. This about stats, desire, heart and coachability…he has all those times ten. Was he a pain sometimes, yes. Most HOF players are. That’s why they were so great (on the field). Ray Lewis..really. great player. Total tool. Owens’ has a righted being angry. I agree with the writer though. He should’ve went.

  41. djstat says:
    August 3, 2018 at 2:17 pm
    Dear T.O.

    Football is the ultimate team sport. You were and are an example of a selfish player who does not put the team first. That is why your enshrinement was delayed. Great individual player, lousy teammate.

    ——————————————————————————————

    Art Monk was a TEAM Player and the epitome of class and never made an spectacles in the media like an Owens, if anything he really didn’t talk to the media. He left the league the all time leader in receptions and was the first to his 900 career catches. It took him 13 YEARS TO GET IN.. So why don’t you explain that DJstat????

    Face it Owens has a point, the problem is everyone is going to look at him instead of his argument. There are plenty of other cases out there as well that support Owens claim. I’m not a fan of Owens by any means but there’s truth to it.

  42. 49ersfury says:
    August 3, 2018 at 4:04 pm
    I’m behind Terrrell Owens 100 percent. TO should have been first ballot. There’s only one WR in the history of the league that has better overall stats.

    There’s a lot of GREAT players that’s not in the NFL Hall of Fame. Especially Roger Craig. Let’s not even talk about what Roger Craig did as a Halfback. Let’s talk about Roger Craig did as a Fullback.
    +++++++++++++++
    Roger Craig…averaged 50 yards rushing per game over his career and 30 yards per game receiving in a system which was new to the NFL. You telling me no other player in the NFL in that time could have done that with Bill Walsh? And as a FULLBACK, things were different then. Most sets were 21 personnel that’s it. Not saying he’s a bad player but he’s not as good as you lead on.

  43. Well, at least nobody can say TO isn’t consistent. Nothing has changed one bit. Congratulations TO. Now please fade into obscurity again.

  44. It’s like the runner-up to Prom Queen protesting the process. Who does he think he’s helping?

  45. patriotmaleorgy says;

    “Roger Craig…averaged 50 yards rushing per game over his career and 30 yards per game receiving in a system which was new to the NFL. You telling me no other player in the NFL in that time could have done that with Bill Walsh? And as a FULLBACK, things were different then. Most sets were 21 personnel that’s it. Not saying he’s a bad player but he’s not as good as your leading on.
    ————————————————————————
    Roger Craig wasn’t good….He was GREAT. Just look at the 1988 Super Bowl game winning drive…Who did Montana look to when Rice was covered?

    He was drafted to be Wendell Tyler’s lead blocker, but was so great he became much much more, a history,making game changing back.

    He is on the 1980’s all decade team and is the only RB on that team not in the Hall of Fame.

    Super Bowl stats

    198 Yards Rushing, 212 Yards receiving. 4 TDs……Hall of Famer.

  46. He’s so full of it. If he had actually been voted in on his first try he wouldn’t be making any kind of ‘stand’. He likes to pout and is being petty because it brings him more attention than standing out for his play. Maybe after he’s inducted he’ll, finally, go away for good.

  47. I always find it amusing that people cry about professional athletes and say “ go away” , but always manage to keep commenting about them. Obsessed much?

  48. T.O, may think he’s making a stand for others but he’s making this about himself and himself only. Is the voting system perfect? No but tell me what voting system is? Regardless of what the criteria is when you’re dealing with people not everyone will vote the same or have the same agenda. Should Owens have been a 1st Ballot HOFer? Yes but so should have a lot of players before him and they were not. There’s about 320 total HOFers and only 77 of them were 1at Ballot and of that only 6 WR’s were first Ballot. IMO his stance won’t change anything. Next year there will be someone who should be a 1st Ballot and he won’t be. He’s about to become to only living HOFer than didn’t attend the ceremony. There are a lot of players who eventually got inducted that were mad that it took longer than they expected but they showed up. Harry Carson, the great Giants MLB was so incensed that it took so long that he told the HOF to take his name off the ballot completely because he didn’t care anymore if he got in but once he was elected he was there making his speech. Owens IMO is doing this to get back and Pro Football HOF, its voters and the rest of the players in the Hall, nothing more nothing less. The only thing that is surprising is that Owens didn’t plan to have his celebration on a day other than when the HOF is having theirs. He would have the whole stage to himself instead of sharing it.

  49. One of things that hurts Craig is his career numbers. He had a little over 8100 career rushing yards with only 3 1,000 yard rushing seasons. There aren’t too many modern running backs that are in the HOF with those numbers who’s career was cut short by injury. He played 11 years so he wasn’t cheated. Its hard to get the numbers as a running back in the West Coast Offense. The only one I can think of that is in the HOF is Marshall Faulk and he had much better numbers than Craig. IMO he’s a borderline HOF but good enough to get in, unfortunately his best chance to get in is thru the veterans committee. I believe his eligibility is up with the writers. His first year on the ballot since 1999.

  50. Lynn Swann did show up for his speech:

    Lynn Swann’s Stats:

    336 Receptions 5462 Yards 51 TD’s

    TO did not show up for his speech:

    TO’s Stats:

    1078 Receptions 15,934 Yards 153 TD’s

    _______________

    Lynn Swann and John Stallworth COMBINED STATS:

    873 Receptions 14,185 Yards 114 TD’s

    TO has a point. The voters for the HOF snubbed him because they didn’t like him, but he was a PLAYER! He should have been a First Ballot Hall of Famer. He has every right to be ticked off.

  51. TO does not even come close to being a real HOF’er as two inductees this year that have waited way to long to be in Canton

  52. The idiot needs to stay away, he doesn’t belong on the Hall of Fame. His presence would just take away from all of the true Hall of Famers.

  53. No T.o is wrong . This is the hall of fame. He needs to put his big boy pants on and get over it. I think he’s def only hurting him self.

    You got to keep in mind that T.O got traded to Baltimore and refuse to play for them. He is the only player that ever did that . Moss over Owens anyway

  54. Amorgan67 says;

    “One of things that hurts Craig is his career numbers. He had a little over 8100 career rushing yards with only 3 1,000 yard rushing seasons. There aren’t too many modern running backs that are in the HOF with those numbers who’s career was cut short by injury. He played 11 years so he wasn’t cheated. Its hard to get the numbers as a running back in the West Coast Offense. The only one I can think of that is in the HOF is Marshall Faulk and he had much better numbers than Craig. IMO he’s a borderline HOF but good enough to get in, unfortunately his best chance to get in is thru the veterans committee. I believe his eligibility is up with the writers. His first year on the ballot since 1999.”
    ————————————————————————
    See if the casual fan looks at Roger Craig’s Stats they’ll say “he’s borderline Hall of Famer etc…which is what these hall of fame voters really are…casual fans, too lazy to do thorough research and analysis and base their votes off highlights and stats.

    Stats alone don’t illustrate Roger Craig’s career. Stats don’t show how good of blocker he was for Wendell Tyler when he played Fullback. The matchup nightmares he created as a Fullback that led the 49ers to a 15-1 season in 1984 and how important he was in the domination of good Miami Dolphins team in the Super Bowl.

    Stats don’t show how many important drives he continuied as a receiver out the backfield.

    Stats don’t show how punished the most physical of defenses with running style.

    Stats don’t show how his peers and legends of the game respected admired the heart that he played with and his desire and intensity including players from Barry Sanders to the great Jim Brown.

    Stats don’t show the impact he had on players like Barry Sanders and Jerry Rice by teaching them how to work in the Off Season, and Jerry Rice taught that to Terrell Owens.

    Him being the first and only FULLBACK to have 1000 yards rushing and receiving in the same season, being the first RB to have over 90 receptions in a season, the first RB to make the pro bowl(when it means something) as a HB and FB, the first RB to score 3 TDs in a super bowl, on an All Decade Team …..MEANS YOU CAN NOT WRITE THE HISTORY OF THE GAME WITHOUT INCLUDING ROGER CRAIG…..He is the epitome of a Hall of Famer, but because the system is flawed with voters who don’t really know football he’s not in the Hall of Fame, but a Fullback like Larry Csonka is…it’s crazy.

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