Anderson thinks he ran to HOF; Webb feels he blocked way in


Photo courtesy of the Miami Dolphins
New York Giants running back Ottis "OJ" Anderson (24) runs the ball during the NFL football game against the Los Angeles Raiders on December 24, 1989 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Giants won the game 34-17. (AP Photo/Paul Spinelli)
(O.J. Anderson photo courtesy of N.Y.Giants)

Talk of Fame Network

Former Super Bowl MVP O.J. Anderson and 1990s all-decade left tackle Richmond Webb are this week’s Talk of Fame Network guests as we continue our series speaking both with players on the Hall- of-Fame’s preliminary list of 94 candidates for the Class of 2017 and those who are deserving but were omitted.

Anderson is a former NFL Rookie of the Year, a former Super Bowl MVP and a member of the list of 94, but he believes his induction in Canton is long overdue. In his 20th year of eligibility, Anderson tells our hosts Clark Judge, Rick Gosselin and Ron Borges that he firmly believes he belongs in the Hall of Fame and lays out a strong case for himself.

In 1979 he was the first rookie back ever to average 100 rushing yards a game, finishing third in rushing that season behind Earl Campbell and Walter Payton.  In 1980 he repeated that on his way to rushing for over 10,000 yards in a 14-year career in which he played on two Super Bowl champions (the New York Giants) after beginning his career with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Anderson has never been so much as a semi-finalist for the Hall, a slight he hopes to see changed this year.

Webb was a dominant left tackle for 11 seasons in Miami, protecting Hall-of-Fame quarterback Dan Marino’s blindside. Webb has the most consecutive Pro Bowl appearances of any Miami Dolphin, including Marino, yet in his ninth year of eligibility he was not even on the Hall’s list of 94 nominees.

“I try not to focus on it,’’ Webb said. “I’ve seen how it’s impacted a couple of guys. It eats away at them. I definitely think I’m worthy, but I don’t understand the whole process.’’

One can see why. Webb was so dominant at his position that in his 14 games against all-time sack leader Bruce Smith (200 sacks), the Buffalo Bills’ Hall of Famer had only 3 ½ sacks on a team that was throwing the ball 60 per cent of the time or more.

“That was one of the things that motivated me,’’ Webb said of protecting Marino. “You did not want to be the guy who gets him hurt. By the time I got to Florida, he was already an icon. You didn’t want to be the guy who ended Dan Marino’s career.’’

Also stopping by is Hall-of-Fame voter Paul Domowitch of the Philadelphia Daily News to fill us in on rookie sensation Carson Wentz, who is 3-0 and has no interceptions, while our Hall-of-Fame Guys launch another in their series of residential debates that includes which safety you would next send to Canton, how to fix the Chicago Bears and what the Giants can and should do with Odell Beckham.

There’s that and much more in this week’s two-hour show. It can be heard on 80 stations around the country; on the Talk of Fame Network podcast on iTunes or by simply going to talkoffamenetwork.com and clicking on the microphone icon. There you will also find archives of all past interviews as well as the weekly State Your Case arguments for guys like Anderson and Webb.

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3 Comments

  1. bachslunch
    September 30, 2016
    Reply

    Richmond Webb (2/7/90s) actually has a reasonable HoF argument, about as good as Chris Hinton. It’s a mystery why he never even gets a preliminary nomination year after year. Fairly or not, Ottis Anderson is where the HoF seem to have drawn the line for RBs and the HoF. I think it’s fair to do so, though — Anderson has minimal peak (1/2/none) and didn’t compile quite enough lifetime yardage (10,273). Somebody has to be the best player at their position not in, and note that RB is probably the most over-represented position in the HoF.

  2. Rick Gosselin
    September 30, 2016
    Reply

    All that said, Anderson and Webb deserve to have their cases heard by the full committee. They may not be Hall of Famers, but they deserve to have their careers and their candidacies discussed and debated. Both were players of accomplishment.

  3. September 30, 2016
    Reply

    I think OJ Anderson does make it over the HOF threshold. He’s the best player in St Louis Cardinals history. A two time Super Bowl champ and MVP who was glowingly endorsed by Bill Parcells, Tom Coughlin and Bill Belichick, which represents the weight of eight Super Bowl championships backing him. And he has just 43 total yards less from scrimmage as O.J. Simpson–and Anderson never killed anyone! In my book, his career crowning achievement of being named Super Bowl XXV MVP makes up for those 43 yards and makes him the statistical equal of Simpson and far more moral superior.

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