Terrell Owens, Randy Moss and Isaac Bruce always meant trouble for NFL secondaries. This week they’ll be troubling the 48 Pro Football Hall-of-Fame voters as their candidacies are voted on along with 15 other finalists on Saturday, Feb. 3, to determine the 2018 Hall-of-Fame class.
This week’s Talk of Fame Network podcasts will center on those candidacies through the eyes of our Talk of Fame Guys, Ron Borges, Rick Gosselin and Clark Judge. They are Hall-of-Fame voters with a combined 80-odd years covering the NFL, with nearly half of that spent as HOF voters. Each day this week they’ll debate on our podcast the candidates at various positions, beginning with the most hot topic button – Moss, Owens and Bruce.
They waste no time getting into it when Gosselin announces “I personally prefer Moss because of the quality of catch. I don’t care how many balls you caught. What did you do after you caught them?’’
Gosselin points out Moss played one fewer season that Owens but had more touchdowns, more 100-yard games and averaged almost a yard more per catch. Borges argues few receivers in history did more than Owens with the passes he caught, since only one receiver in history has more receiving yardage than T.O. He adds that when Moss finally got to the Super Bowl he failed to catch the most important ball thrown his way, the one that would have saved the Patriots’ undefeated season and beaten the New York Giants, who upset them in 2007.
He counters that Owens caught nine passes of 14 thrown his way for 122 yards in Super Bowl XXXIX playing on a broken leg!
“How about the quality of those catches,’’ he argues.
Judge has been a constant opponent of Owens, whom he once covered in San Francisco and hence saw up close, believing he was a divisive locker room presence who divided more than benefited the teams he was on. He forcefully points out every team that hired him also let him go, some in the prime of his career.
The three then debate the issue of whether the same applies to Moss, himself an often controversial off-the-field figure, and where does that leave Bruce? Bruce is the only Super Bowl champion of the three and was highly regarded not only for his production but also his professionalism.
Do these three think any of them will make it, or will they cancel each other out? Will Owens, who ranks second all-time in receiving yards, third in touchdowns and eighth in receptions, be denied a third time? Will Moss, widely believed to be the best receiver of his time, be a first-ballot Hall of Famer or join Moss on the outside looking in?
And what of Isaac Bruce? Will he be the compromise selection?
You can hear the full, spirited debate by downloading the free podcast at iTunes.apple.com, vokalnow.com or by going to our website, talkoffamenetwork.com