Steelers Mt. Rushmore honors the team of the ’70s

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Somehow, we narrowed the list of all-time great Steelers to 12 finalists.  Somehow, we carved that 12 down to four.

The greatness achieved by the Steelers of the 1970s has not yet been matched, by any team.  One quarterback, one coach, four Super Bowl wins.  No Super Bowl losses.

For that reason, the team of the ’70s is well represented on the Pittsburgh Mt. Rushmore.

The fan vote came to the same conclusion:  Chuck Noll, Terry Bradshaw, Joe Greene, and Jack Lambert are the four names and faces that best epitomize the franchise.

So why was the Rooney family omitted?  I supplied my reason on Friday’s edition of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN.  For PFT Planet, the easy answer is they didn’t get enough votes.

Ravens Mt. Rushmore has few surprises

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It wasn’t easy to get the Ravens’ Mt. Rushmore to 12 finalists.  It was much easier to get it to four.

As unveiled last night on Pro Football Talk on NBCSN, they are Ray Lewis (duh), Jonathan Ogden (duh), Ozzie Newsome (duh), and Joe Flacco (not as duh).

PFT Planet took Ed Reed over Flacco, which isn’t an unreasonable choice.  Still, Flacco’s arrival in 2008 sparked a run of five straight playoff appearances with at least one postseason win per year.  And they won the Super Bowl in 2012 with Flacco named MVP after he made the ultimate contract-year, all-in gamble.

For the full discussion from last night’s show, click the thing down there.

Browns have Brown-heavy Mt. Rushmore


Maybe the Browns need more people named Brown.

Two of the all-time franchise greats — Paul Brown and Jim Brown — landed on the Cleveland Mt. Rushmore.  Joining them on the mountain were Otto Graham and Lou Groza.

PFT Planet supplanted Groza with Ozzie Newsome, but otherwise agreed with our assessment.

The full discussion from Thursday’s Pro Football Talk on NBCSN appears below.

Mt. Rushmore series ends Friday with Steel Curtain

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The month of June is winding down.  Which means that our segment which arguably qualifies for the Mt. Rushmore of time-filling is coming to a conclusion.

It ends with a black-and-gold bang, as we try to whittle the all-time Steelers greats from 12 down to four.

Of all teams, this was the hardest — both when coming up with the finalists and when narrowing them to a quartet of winners.

So look at the list.  Think about it.  Think about it some more.  And then vote for up to four.

The winners will be announced on Friday’s edition of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN, which gets rolling at 5:00 p.m. ET.

Ochocinco merits a spot on Bengals’ Mt. Rushmore

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The Bengals, despite plenty of bad years and worse teams, have had plenty of good players.  Four of them earned spots on the team’s Mt. Rushmore.

Unveiled on Tuesday’s Pro Football Talk on NBCSN, the four men on the mountain include Ken Anderson, Anthony Muñoz, Corey Dillon, and (yes) Chad Johnson/Ochocinco.

Though he took the playfulness and frivolity a bit too far later in his career, Johnson had a great career with the Bengals, as explained in the segment from the show posted below.

Shaun King agreed with me.  But PFT Planet didn’t.  Ochocinco and Dillon were replaced by Boomer Esiason and Paul Brown.

The reigning champs get their Mt. Rushmore

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We’re down to the last two franchises, and they’re pretty good ones.

On Thursday, the Ravens get their Mt. Rushmore.  On Friday, the Steelers.

Even though the Ravens have been around only since 1996, a pair of Super Bowl wins made it hard to narrow the field of nominees down to 12 finalists.

It may not be as hard to pick two or three of the winners.

Pick up to four from the dozen names below.  And feel free to complain in the comments about any names left off the list.

Tune in at 5:00 p.m. ET to Pro Football Talk on NBCSN for the Ravens’ winners.

Rice likes his Top 100 ranking, disagrees with Flacco’s

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NFL Network’s Top 100 list continues to provide plenty of us with things to discuss during the slow months.  Which qualifies it for, you know, the Mt. Rushmore of time-killing topics.

Most recently, Ravens running back Ray Rice provided a mixed review as to two of the specific rankings.  Appearing on NFL Network, Rice expressed agreement with his placement at No. 13 (behind only two running back), and disagreement with quarterback Joe Flacco’s position at No. 19.

Rice is wrong on both.  He’s too high, and Flacco is too low.

“I think Joe should be ranked a lot higher,” Rice said. “It is a ‘right now’ league and what he did with his Super Bowl performance, his playoff performance, he [is] very deserving of being a lot higher in my eyes. I am not saying that because he is my quarterback, I am saying that because, Joe Flacco, I know what he is capable of doing.  I have been around the guy, he is a darn good quarterback, a very elite quarterback.”

Rice said that he personally plans to be even more elite in 2013.

“I know I have a lot of great football left in me,” Rice said.  “I am going into year six, so it might be time to turn it up another level.”

It’ll be hard to do that, if Rice loses touches to Bernard Pierce.  We don’t know what more Flacco needs to do to get to the top 10.

Last spot for Chiefs Mt. Rushmore comes down to Thomas, Gonzalez

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The Chiefs have a special place in AFL history.  The problem is that their recent history isn’t very special.

And so their Mt. Rushmore is skewed to the past.  The Pro Football Talk version has Hank Stram, Len Dawson, and Willie Lanier in three of the spots.

The fourth, for me, came down to linebacker Derrick Thomas and tight end Tony Gonzalez.  Both were dominant at their positions, with Hall of Fame credentials.  Neither played on teams that enjoyed much success, particularly in the postseason.

Thomas had more playoff success in his time than Gonzalez, and the tragic circumstances of Derrick’s death ended up being the biggest factor for me.

PFT Planet put both on the mountain, omitting Lanier.

The full segment from Monday’s show appears below, with more discussion and debate and the full results of the vote.

ProFootballTalk: Chiefs’ Mt. Rushmore

Mike Florio and the fans agree that Derrick Thomas, Hank Stram and Len Dawson belong on the Kansas City Chiefs’ Mt. Rushmore, but disagree on who belongs in the final spot. Erik Kuselias goes against the grain throwing Lamar Hunt into the discussion.


Raiders Mt. Rushmore was easy for two, hard for two


Monday’s edition of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN included the Raiders’ Mt. Rushmore.

It was easy to name two of them:  Al Davis and John Madden.

For the other two, it got a little more difficult.  I picked Fred Biletnikoff and Gene Upshaw.  PFT Planet picked Marcus Allen and Howie Long.

So who Erik Kuselias and Shaun King wanted on the mountain, and check out the voting results by watching the segment.  And then feel free to add your thoughts below.

Bengals’ Mt. Rushmore debuts on Tuesday

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It’s the final week of the Mt. Rushmore process, and the final division gets rolling on Tuesday.

It’s the AFC North, and the first franchise up is arguably the most potent team of the four heading into 2013.

Yes, the long-forgotten Bengals have become a force lately, with a pair of playoff appearances and a high ceiling.  The ceiling hasn’t been high many times in the past, but the Bengals have still managed to get to a pair of Super Bowls — that’s something plenty of teams (14, to be precise) can’t say.

But every teams gets four on their Mt. Rushmore, and the Bengals’ finalists are listed below.  Vote for up to four, and we’ll pull the sheet off the mountain on Tuesday’s Pro Football Talk on NBCSN at 5:00 p.m. ET.

Chargers’ Mt. Rushmore omits L.T.


The Chargers got their Mt. Rushmore on Friday.  And the greatest running back in team history didn’t get a spot on it.

Sure, PFT Planet opted to give LaDainian Tomlinson one of the four positions.  For me, however, L.T. ended up at No. 5.

It didn’t help that he played for a franchise that has included men like Dan Fouts, Charlie Joiner, Lance Alworth, and Junior Seau, my four choices.  It also didn’t help that Tomlinson’s teams never made it to a Super Bowl, despite having more talent than Fouts’ Chargers and less intense competition than those San Diego teams faced.

Cementing the decision was Tomlinson’s opinion, as expressed last year on NBCSN, that he’d rather have a Hall of Fame career than a championship.  While his accomplishments are worthy of Canton, that mindset hurts him when it’s time to pick the men who are the faces of a franchise that, based on his own admission, ultimately took a back seat to Tomlinson’s individual goals and ambitions.
The full segment from Friday’s show appears below, along with the L.T. debate and the outcome of the voting process.

It’s Mt. Rushmore time in Oakland, but Raiders fans may call it Mt. Davis

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As the Mt. Rushmore process enters the home stretch, we enter the home of the Raiders.

Good luck, Oakland/L.A./Oakland fans, whittling our list of 12 finalists down to four.

Cast your votes now.  The finalists will be revealed at 5:00 p.m. ET/2:00 p.m. PT on Monday’s edition of Pro Football Talk on NBCSN.

Don’t you like how we included the PT reference?  Of course, some will point out that the ET came first, confirming yet again the existence of an East Coast bias.

Sharp(e) disagreement on Broncos’ Mt. Rushmore

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Lately, Pro Football Talk on NBCSN and PFT Planet had been in consistent agreement regarding the Mt. Rushmores of multiple teams.

Key words:  Had been.

On Friday, the two sides differed when it comes to half of the Broncos Mt. Rushmore.

Sure, we agreed on John Elway.  And hard-hitting (just ask Christian Okoye) safety Steve Atwater.  But I went with Floyd Little and Tom Jackson, which the voters picked Terrell Davis and Shannon Sharpe.

Watch the segment, see the voting results, and complain in the comments below.