Thursday, 1 November 2007


The Pro Football Hall Of Fame has released its preliminary nominees for the class of 2008.
This of course is only the first stage of the selection process, and there is a long way to go, but there are once again Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders on that list who should be in the Hall and will again probably be ignored.
The full list of ex Raiders on the list are :
Eric Allen
Cliff Branch
Todd Christensen
Roger Craig
Tom Flores
Ray Guy
Lester 'The Molester' Hayes
Jim Lachey
Jim Plunkett
Kenny Stabler
Pat Swilling
Steve Wisniewski
Albert Lewis.

Looking at that list the players in question began to fall into categories for me.
Firstly the A's :- The men that should be in already, and due to the reluctance of the HOF to turn that place Silver and Black, are not.
Namely : Flores, Stabler, Guy, Plunkett, and Hayes.
The fact that these guys aren't in there is a disgrace, and it's obvious that they won't induct all of them again this time either, so some of them will continue to be absent.Of these Raiders, the one I would like to see get in there first would be Tom Flores, almost a Raider for life (we can forget about the Seahawks thing ), player to coach to front office and 2 Rings, enough said.
They should all be in but if there were a pecking order in my mind it would be headed by Tom Flores with possibly Stabler a close second.Whoever is snubbed this year by Canton, will surely take some solace in the fact that all of them but Lester were in the first round of Pond HOF 'ers ( won't they? ).

Then there are the B's.The players who shouldn't necessarily already be in there, but present a convincing case to be included in any class
These being : Cliff Branch ( almost an A ), Steve Wisniewski, and Todd Christensen.All great players and great Raiders,The Wiz being a personal favourite.These guys would not be out of place in the Hall even now, and surely it is a matter of time for them.Cliff Branch is a debate though, an A or a B?Close call for me and still wavering at the time of writing, Oh sod it, 'Speed Kills' Branch is an A, in fact they should put his bust in-between Stabler and Plunkett, with Bill King playing in the background.

The C's are good players, possibly great players that wore the Silver and Black during their career:-
Eric Allen, Jim Lachey, and Pat Swilling.

And the D's, the players who wore Silver and Black, but quite frankly, does anyone give a shit:
Roger Craig and Albert Lewis.
Craig is and will always be a Whiner, one season in L.A. is not enough to be a Raider.Lewis was a decent player for the Raiders and was a good pick up at the time, but he was a Chief for ten years, so he's a D too.

Looking down the complete list of the preliminaries it becomes clear that some names are laughable at this stage.The are names such as :-

Eric Metcalf, Rickey Jackson, Jay Novacek, Tony Boselli, and Ed De Bartolo Jnr.

These names are on the same page as Tom Flores and Kenny Stabler for christ's sake.
The Pond HOF will be conducting it's second induction during the playoff rounds this year, as there won't be much Raider news at that point, so hopefully the other HOF will follow suit with a bunch of Raiders, but obviously we aren't holding our breath, are we?


dax said...

That's a disgrace!
How can Ed Jr. even be mentioned in the same breath with the NFL HOF?
I know that Al was the one that got Ed Sr. into football so there is a connection to THE NATION, but Jr. just doesn't belong.

Rambling Psychoses said...

Hey, bro, where's Ray Guy in your assessment? I thought for sure he was a first-ballot lock. Guess not. But of course he's just a punter. Only the greatest punter to ever play the game. But just a punter. Kinda' sticks in my craw when they say that...

---Arkansan Raider

Calico Jack said...

Nice job Martin. I would love to see at least 1 of the Raider nominees get into the HOF in the next induction. Ray Guy's sustained excellence over his long career deserves it's proper recognition. It is long overdue for the HOF to recognize Special Teams players who had stellar careers.

On a side note, email me at your earliest convenience. I lost your email address and I have a proposition for you! Thanks.

Calico Jack

kigleigh said...

Arkansan Raider, i can assure you that the error of missing out Ray Guy was not a slur on the best punter ever to play,it would be due to the the fact that this piece was written just a couple of days before our trip to Oaktown and the writer was almost certainly overwhelmed by excitement and anticipation.
By the way Calico Jack i totally agree with your point on the HOF ignoring special teams.You need look no further than our current Raiders team to see their value.Unfortunately, without Seabass we may not score a point at all,and the 2nd best punter ever,Shane Lechler,has to rescue field position for us on any number of occasions when the offense fails to move the ball.Respect is overdue.

Leighraider said...

Thanks for the replies, Arkansan Rider I had Ray Guy in the category of Guys who should already be in there, you must have missed him but he's there, honest.