If the public could vote on the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Junior Seau is a slam dunk.
We asked our readers in our weekly Talk of Fame Network poll which potential candidate in the Class of 2015 is most deserving of Canton: Seau, pass-rush extraordinaire Charles Haley, the NFL’s No. 3 all-time receiver Marvin Harrison or quarterback Kurt Warner.
Seau won in a romp, receiving almost half of all votes cast at 49.8 percent. Haley was next at 30.7 percent, followed by Warner at 10.2 and Harrison at 9.3. Hall of Fame Network co-hosts Ron Borges, Rick Gosselin and Clark Judge all voted defenders, with Judge selecting Seau and Borges and Gosselin both tabbing Haley.
“This comes as no surprise to me,” Judge said. “I covered the guy from the time he was drafted, and seldom have I seen a more complete athlete. He was a dynamic player who made big plays in big games and put the Chargers’ defense on the map.
“Junior Seau not only is deserving of the Hall of Fame; I would be surprised if he’s not a first-ballot Hall of Famer…and, apparently, our readers agree.”
Seau played 20 seasons and was voted to 12 Pro Bowls. He was named the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year in 1992 and had his jersey number 55 retired by the Chargers. He also played linebacker for the Dolphins and Patriots in his career but never won a championship.
Haley did. Five of them. Which is why Gosselin cast his ballot for Haley, who won a pair of Super Bowls with the 49ers in the 1980s and three more with the Cowboys in the 1990s. He’s the only player in NFL history with five Super Bowl rings. He backed them up with 100 career sacks.
“When the 49ers traded Haley to the 49ers in 1992, the balance of power shifted in the NFL,” Gosselin said. “He shows up on campus and the Cowboys immediately vaulted from 17th in the NFL in defense to first and win their first Super Bowl of the decade. The Cowboys don’t win Super Bowls without Charles Haley.”
Seau and Warner are both eligible for Canton for the first time in 2015. Haley has been a finalist five times and Harrison once.
Courtesy of the San Diego Chargers