Moss, Owens headline 2018 Hall of Fame class
Terrell Owens and Randy Moss headlined the 2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame class announced in Minneapolis on Saturday.
For the first time in history, there is more than one wide receiver in the same class.
Moss, former Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis and former Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher were elected in their first year of eligibility.
Former Eagles safety Brian Dawkins, former Packers guard Jerry Kramer, former Oilers linebacker Robert Brazile, and former executive Bobby Beathard join Lewis, Moss, Owens and Urlacher in this year's Hall of Fame class.
The 2018 class will officially be inducted in Canton on August 4.
Lewis was a 13-time Pro Bowler over a 17-year career spent entirely with the Ravens. He was the Defensive Player of the Year twice and helped the Ravens win each of the Super Bowl titles in 2000 and 2012. He was the MVP of Super Bowl XXXV and finished his career with 1,336 total tackles, 41.5 sacks and 31 interceptions. If there was any one player who was a lock for the 2018 class, it was Lewis.
Moss was one of the most dangerous receivers the NFL has ever seen. With blazing speed thanks to a long stride, Moss was capable of a big play every time he touched the ball. He was a first-round pick of the Vikings in the 1998 draft and had an immediate impact with 69 catches for 1,313 yards and a league-high 17 touchdowns in his first year. He finished his 14-year career, that included six Pro Bowl selections, with 982 receptions (15th all-time) for 15,292 yards (fourth) and 156 touchdowns (second).
Moss is the first receiver since Jerry Rice in 2010 to get inducted in his first year of eligibility.
Right behind Moss for touchdowns (153) and just ahead of him in yards (15,934) is Owens, whose 1,078 receptions rank eighth all-time. Owens was passed over the previous two years, but finally got in this time. While his numbers are undeniable, Owens was perceived as a bad team-mate – something that had kept him out of Canton.
Urlacher spent his entire 13-year career with the Bears and was the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2000. He was the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year in 2005 when he had 121 tackles with six sacks, five pass breakups and a forced fumble to help the Bears win the NFC North. Urlacher was an eight-time Pro Bowler with 1,229 tackles, 41.5 sacks, 78 pass breakups, 22 interceptions and 12 forced fumbles over his career.
Dawkins gets in after being passed over last year in his first year of eligibility. One of the most versatile defensive backs in NFL history, 'Weapon X' was a nine-time Pro Bowler and five-time first-team All-Pro selection. Dawkins had 778 tackles with 26 sacks, 28 forced fumbles and 37 interceptions over a 16-year career. He spent 13 of those seasons with the Eagles before finishing his career with the Broncos.
The two Senior Committee finalists – Kramer and Brazile – were both included in the 2018 Hall class.
Kramer, whom Vince Lombardi once called the best guard in football, had been regarded as the most overlooked player from the 1960s Packers teams that won five championships in seven years, including the first two Super Bowls. No player had been a finalist more than Kramer without receiving induction into the Hall.
Now 82 years old, Kramer was a three-time Pro Bowler and five-time All-Pro selection over an 11-year career for Lombardi's Packers. He is perhaps best known for the key block that paved the way for Bart Starr's game-winning quarterback sneak to beat the Cowboys in the 1967 NFL championship game, otherwise known as the Ice Bowl. Kramer was elected to the Packers Hall of Fame in 1975.
Kramer is the 25th Packers player inducted in Canton and 12th from Green Bay's championship teams of the 1960s. He was named to the league’s 50th Anniversary team and was the only member of that group not already in the Hall of Fame.
Brazile was the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year in 1975 after the Oilers selected the linebacker with the sixth overall pick of the 1975 NFL Draft. Brazile, who will turn 65 Wednesday, made the Pro Bowl every year from 1976-82 and was named to the 1970s all-decade team. During a 10-year career, Brazile never missed a game and retired with 13 interceptions and 11 sacks over his final three seasons, when sacks became an official stat in 1982.
Beathard, the former Redskins and Chargers general manager who was the contributor finalist, rounds out the 2018 Hall of Fame class. Beathard was the architect of Washington's Super Bowl titles in 1982 and 1987. The Redskins won another Super Bowl in 1991, two years after Beathard left to become the GM of the Chargers. The Chargers had four straight losing seasons from 1988-91, but won the AFC West in 1992 and went to the Super Bowl two years later.