The Pro Football Hall of Fame will announce its one senior nominee for the Class of 2019 this week and the popular choice would be former NFL MVP Roman Gabriel.
So say the listeners and readers of the Talk of Fame Network, who voted overwhelmingly in Gabriel’s favor in last week’s poll asking who that 2019 senior nominee should be. Gabriel received 46.8 percent of the vote to outdistance a pair of Washington Redskins, tackle Joe Jacoby at 27 percent and cornerback Pat Fischer at 23.5 percent.
“There are so many deserving guys,” Talk of Fame Network host Ron Borges said, “but if you were a league MVP you have the inside edge. When in Rome go with the Roman (Gabriel that is).”
Gabriel played 16 seasons with the Los Angeles Rams and Philadelphia Eagles and went to four Pro Bowls. He was the NFL MVP in 1969 with the Rams and won his only NFL passing title in 1973 in his first season with the Eagles. He still holds franchise records with the Rams for career touchdown passes (154) and victories (74).
The Talk of Fame Network conducted a series of five senior polls this summer to determine the most worthy candidate for the Class of 2019, then put the five winners together for this final poll. Others in this poll were linebackers Maxie Baughan and Andy Russell and guard Duke Slater. Jacoby started at tackle for three Super Bowl championship teams with the Redskins and Fischer ranks ninth in NFL history among pure cornerbacks with 57 interceptions, tied with Hall of Famer Lem Barney.
The three Talk of Fame Network hosts were split in their voting. Clark Judge voted Baughan and Rick Gosselin Slater. Baughan went to nine Pro Bowls in the 1960s decade alone and Slater was the NFL’s first African-American lineman in the 1920s and a three-time all-pro.