Category Archives: retirement

Is Polamalu a first ballot lock for the Hall of Fame?

As an inspiring journalist, I would consider Troy Polamalu not only one of the top safeties during his era, but possible one of the greatest to every play the game.

As a Ravens fan, I can’t really say I’m that upset to see him go, just as Steelers fans weren’t that upset when Ray Lewis called it a career.

But whether you liked him or hated him, no true football fan can deny the type of level Polamalu played at for the last 12 years with the Steelers. Considered one of the NFL’s most explosive and dynamic players, the former first-round pick for Pittsburgh back in 2003 was a nightmare for teams (mainly QBs) to game plan around, serving as the backbone of the Steelers’ defense. Polamalu retires a four-time first-team All-Pro, with eight Pro Bowl appearance, 2010 Defensive Player of the Year and two Super Bowl championships.

Though his resume show that he should easily be a first-ballot Hall of Famer in five years,  some believe it might not be that simple for Mr. Polamalu.  For starters, Polamalu isn’t even considered the greatest safety the Steelers have every had.  Some might say that Donnie Shell, who played for the “Steel Curtain” defense was equal as a good or even better than Troy during his time in the 1970s, and he’s not in the Hall of Fame either. Yes, he might not have been as dynamic as Polamalu or as big of a name as “Mean” Joe Greene, but Shell was a three-time All-Pro, a five time Pro Bowler with 51 interceptions and a four-time Super Bowl champion.

Another discussion that pops up when you talk about Polamula is whether or not he is considered the best safety in his era. Let say in another month or so, former Baltimore Raven safety Ed Reed officially calls it a career (currently a free agent), both he and Troy would be eligible at the same time in five years, but the committee could only select one over the other ( which is possible since the Hall can only select five modern-day candidates in at a time, and there could be some big names up for consideration during this time).

Who would get in first? Both play with similar, yet distinct styles that opposing offensive coordinators had to be thoroughly prepared for. If you go by stats you probably would say Reed (643 Tlks, 64 INTs, 11 FF, 13 TD) over Polamalu ( 710Tlks,35 INTs, 13 FF, 4 TDs). If you want to look at championships, you would have to go with Polamalu’s two over Reed’s one. We can go back and forth with what this guy did or what this guy didn’t do, but if you had to choose between the two to go into the Hall of Fame first, it’s almost a coin flip in my opinion.

One thing that is certain is that it will be challenging for either of them to get in on their first try, safeties are among the most under-represented positions in the Hall of Fame. Though there are 24 defensive backs enshrined, only 7 of them are considered true safeties (others played both corner and safety).

Though the road to Canton might not be as bright as some Steelers fans would had thought it was for Troy Polumalu,  it doesn’t effect the lasting legacy he left on the field, the amazing plays that left our jaws on the floor, and the constant headaches he gave some of the teams over his career (especially for Ravens fans). There is no question, whether it’s  five years from or more, Troy will be receiving his bust up in Canton at some point down the line, probably sooner rather than later.

Enjoy you’re retirement Troy, though I may not have liked who you played for, those Ravens-Steelers games won’t be the same without seeing No. 43 run around in the secondary, with his signature black curls flowing in the air.

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Peyton Manning: Should He Stay or Should He GO?

 

Peyton Manning is reportedly making plans to meet with Broncos G.M. John Elway to discuss his plan for the 2015 NFL season, whether he’ll play or call it a career. According to reports from the Denver Post, Manning met with Elway in Denver this past

Thursday evening and left with no decision made about his future, which tells me that this man is really hurt and retiring is now a real thought in his mind.

Now I don’t know Manning personal, but from what I have seen from him on the field over the past 16 years, he’s willing to fight through anything to reach that goal of that Lombardi trophy. He fought with some “ok” teams in Indy (great offenses, terrible defenses), fought through neck injuries that led to his release from Indy and to his new home in Denver and he fought through injuries this season, with no whining coming from his end.

Why keep fighting? Simple,he wants another ring, that’s the only reason for him to stay in this game now as he approaches his 40’s.

But is it wroth it at this point? What does he have left to prove?

Like I said, Manning has set every possibly record a quarterback could set in their lifetime in 2013, here are a few:

  • Touchdown thrown in a career :(509)
  • Single season touchdown record :(55)
  • Most passing yards, season : (5,477)
  • Most passing touchdowns in a single game :(tied, 7)
  • Most games with a perfect passer rating of 158.3: (5)

These records alone make him a lock for Canton, no question. If he were to walk into the sunset right now and I don’t think anyone could really be mad at him due to his resume’, but if he chooses to return and you put into considerations all those stats, the fact that he will be 39 years old quite soon and the history of injuries he has suffered, is it really wroth playing for one more season? Is it wroth risking your health, risking you post-football life? All for one more championship?

What will he decided to do?Want my opinion?

Now I don’t think he’ll pull a “Brett Farve” and jerk us and the media around for the next 6-7 months just to tell us he’s going to walk away, but if he does come back, it’s going to be because of one person. Not Peyton, Elway, not his family.

He’ll come back for Tom Brady.

There is no way Manning can just walk away knowing that is archenemy just won his fourth Super Bowl championship. Manning is probably at home right now doing sit-ups into a portrait of Brady with the Super Bowl MVP trophy, waiting for his moment to come around again. I mean think about, the only thing Peyton really has to deal with is the fact that people refuse to crown him the “King of the QBs” is not because he doesn’t have the rings, but the fact that most of the rings Brady has were earned after Brady knocked Peyton out of the playoffs or didn’t have to face him at all.

Now, Manning coming back and potentially winning a Super Bowl championship doesn’t automatically put him above of Brady on the list of greatest QB of all time, but it closes the gap that was widen after this season. If Manning does come back, he will meet with Brady when he visit Denver during the regular season, which Manning usually shines in and of course one of two will have to travel to the other during the playoffs, which is always TV entertainment at its finest.

But, if Manning doesn’t have anything left, or really isn’t cleared by his doctors and the engineer that keeps his robotic-body in check, Denver has some big decisions to make. Do they really trust Brock Osweiler to run this offense? How long will Manning wait to inform the team about his decision and will it have an impact on how they draft (QB in the first round?).

It’s going to be a very interesting few weeks in Denver.