Tomlinson, Warner in T.O.-less Hall of Fame class
Owens tweets votes against him ‘a total joke’
HOUSTON — Voters for the Pro Football Hall of Fame again turned away the second-mostproductive receiver in National Football League history, Terrell Owens, but elected a seven-member class Saturday that includes running back LaDainian Tomlinson and quarterback Kurt Warner.
Running back Terrell Davis, defensive end Jason Taylor and kicker Morten Andersen also were chosen from among the modern era finalists for enshrinement in Canton, Ohio. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was elected as a contributor and former Seattle Seahawks safety Kenny Easley was chosen as the nominee of the seniors committee.
The class might be more notable for who wasn’t elected than for who was. Owens ranks second in league history in career receiving yards. He trails only Jerry Rice in that category. Yet Owens was passed over by the voters for a second straight year, apparently because of his history of clashing with his teams and, on occasion, teammates.
Owens wrote on Twitter that the Hall of Fame “is a total joke. Honestly, doesn’t mean anything to me to get in beyond this point.”
Tomlinson and Taylor were elected in their first year of eligibility. Tomlinson, who spent most of his career with the San Diego Chargers, ranks fifth on the NFL’s career rushing list and was regarded as the closest thing to a lock in this year’s class.
Warner was a two-time league MVP for the St. Louis Rams and started Super Bowls for two different teams, the Rams and Arizona Cardinals.
Taylor was a superb pass rusher over 15 seasons with the Miami Dolphins, Washington Redskins and New York Jets. He amassed 139½ career sacks, seventh-best in league history.
Andersen becomes the second full-time kicker chosen for the Hall of Fame, joining Jan Stenerud. Hall of Famers George Blanda and Lou Groza were kickers who also played other positions.
Davis was elected as a runner who was extremely dominant, but for an extremely brief span. He had four straight 1,000-yard seasons at the outset of his career with the Denver Broncos. He topped 1,500 yards in each of the final three of those seasons, including a 2,008-yard season in 1998. But he never again reached even 800 rushing yards in a season.
Jones owned the Cowboys for three Super Bowl titles in the 1990s and has been one of the key figures in the game’s financial growth.
Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue, nominated as a contributor, wasn’t elected. He presided over a period of labour peace, escalating popularity and economic prosperity. But some voters seemed to take issue with his handling of the sport’s concussion issue.
Also failing to get in were Tony Boselli, Isaac Bruce, Don Coryell, Brian Dawkins, Alan Faneca, Joe Jacoby, Ty Law, John Lynch and Kevin Mawae.
Terrell Owens: not elected
Terrell Davis: elected
LaDainian Tomlinson: elected
Kurt Warner: elected