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Old 12-30-2019, 03:07 PM
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NFL All-Time 100: TEs


{in no particular order}:

Mike Ditka
Kellen Winslow, Sr.
John Mackey
Tony Gonzalez
Rob Gronkowski

Thoughts? Comments?
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Old 12-30-2019, 04:34 PM
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Jerry Smith was as good or better than most of those guys. And showed a hell of a lot of courage as well.
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Old 12-30-2019, 05:49 PM
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Jerry Smith was as good or better than most of those guys. And showed a hell of a lot of courage as well.
I've heard about Jerry Smith and his situation. I know there are some who feel that he should be in the P.F.H.o.F.
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Old 12-30-2019, 06:00 PM
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I've heard about Jerry Smith and his situation. I know there are some who feel that he should be in the P.F.H.o.F.
No doubt he would be, had he not been gay and died of AIDS. His numbers are there.
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Old 12-30-2019, 06:13 PM
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Certainly all five of those were great tight ends. I'm not sure that I'm 100% sold on Ditka making the short list; looking at his stats, he was awesome for his first four or five years, and then his production tailed off substantially. Maybe I'm not seeing the whole story in his stats, so I'd be happy to be shown otherwise, but I wonder if part of what got him onto that list was being the coach of the '85 Bears.

Two guys I can think of who could have also made the list are Antonio Gates and Dave Casper.
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Old 12-30-2019, 06:16 PM
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No doubt he would be, had he not been gay and died of AIDS. His numbers are there.
Being gay is no longer considered an impediment to joining the HoF, right? I mean, I certainly hope so! Can't he be voted into the Hall now? Or is there some time period after retirement in which you need to be selected? If there is, surely an exception could be made for gross discrimination.
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Old 12-30-2019, 06:37 PM
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Being gay is no longer considered an impediment to joining the HoF, right? I mean, I certainly hope so! Can't he be voted into the Hall now? Or is there some time period after retirement in which you need to be selected? If there is, surely an exception could be made for gross discrimination.
There's no time limit which would prevent it. I'd like to be able to say that his sexual orientation should now play no role in his consideration, but the HoF voters are, in essence, a group of middle-aged to older men (the Selection Committee is a group of 48 sportswriters), and I guess I wouldn't be surprised if at least some of them would still, quietly, not support Smith for that reason.

The other reality is that Smith retired in 1977, and his last good season was 1975. Many of the current members of the Selection Committee probably never saw him play, and just aren't familiar with him.

If Smith stands a chance to get into the Hall, what would have to happen is one or more of the members of the committee would need to champion his cause, and campaign for him. This has definitely happened in the past (it's how Ray Guy finally got in, IIRC), but without something like that, I don't see it ever happening.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-30-2019 at 06:38 PM.
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Old 12-30-2019, 07:50 PM
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Shannon Sharpe?

Not saying he's *the* best, but he definitely belongs on the list.
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Old 12-30-2019, 08:13 PM
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Gates not being there is howlingly bad. Others not mentioned who could reasonably be include: Jason Witten, Jimmy Graham, Greg Olsen, Ozzie Newsome (and he might be a better GM than he was a player)
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Old 12-30-2019, 08:52 PM
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Certainly all five of those were great tight ends. I'm not sure that I'm 100% sold on Ditka making the short list; looking at his stats, he was awesome for his first four or five years, and then his production tailed off substantially. Maybe I'm not seeing the whole story in his stats, so I'd be happy to be shown otherwise, but I wonder if part of what got him onto that list was being the coach of the '85 Bears.
My understanding is that Mike Ditka came along and was a standout right when the position of TE was developing as something distinct from just "end" or "flanker" or "split end." So perhaps that has something to do with it.

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Two guys I can think of who could have also made the list are Antonio Gates and Dave Casper.
Yeah, I don't know why they kept it to only five. Seems to me that 3 of the 5 are "all around" TEs (ones known both for blocking and receiving) while a couple are known mostly for their receiving ability. My point being that maybe they wanted both types of standout TEs to be represented on the team without weighting it too much in either direction.
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Old 12-30-2019, 08:53 PM
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Shannon Sharpe?

Not saying he's *the* best, but he definitely belongs on the list.
I think Tony Gonzalez took Shannon Sharpe's receiving skills to an even higher level, maybe?
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Old 12-30-2019, 09:29 PM
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My understanding is that Mike Ditka came along and was a standout right when the position of TE was developing as something distinct from just "end" or "flanker" or "split end." So perhaps that has something to do with it.
Perhaps so...but I've often read pretty much that same exact thing being stated about Mackey. So, out of only five slots, they gave two to "the guy who defined the modern TE position."
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Old 12-30-2019, 09:33 PM
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Yeah, I don't know why they kept it to only five. Seems to me that 3 of the 5 are "all around" TEs (ones known both for blocking and receiving) while a couple are known mostly for their receiving ability. My point being that maybe they wanted both types of standout TEs to be represented on the team without weighting it too much in either direction.
I think it was the nature of how they structured the list -- they decided to make it 100 players, and some positions (like QB) got more slots on the list than others.
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Old 12-30-2019, 09:37 PM
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I agree that Ditka is on this list for being the first of the more modern TEs rather than being one of the best.

Shannon Sharpe should definitely be on it because he was Tony Gonzales before Tony was Tony (although not by a whole lot) and you could talk me into Antonio Gates too. The only reason I'd maybe hold Gates off is because he really benefits from the more modern passing game and you could make an argument for a lot of people that way.
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Old 12-30-2019, 09:41 PM
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Personally I'm more for the "all around" TEs but I can certainly see how it's hard to overlook the receiving skills of guys like Ozzie Newsome, Kellen Winslow, Shannon Sharpe, Tony Gonzalez, and Antonio Gates.
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