Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Hall snubs of Andre Reed & Bill Parcells, along with Fab Melo's triumphant return

I feel badly for Andre Reed. He deserves to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but the longer he’s denied – he’s now been a finalist six times – the harder it’s going to be for him to be elected. He may very well face the fate that Art Monk did. Monk, the former Washington Redskins great, had to wait 14 years before having his bust sculpted.

When assessing Reed’s career you can’t just go on numbers, although his are certainly Hall worthy. (951 receptions; 13,198 yards, 87 touchdowns.)

Back in the day, when Andre was a major cog in the Bills unprecedented Super Bowl run, he was regarded in many circles second only to the immortal Jerry Rice among pass-catchers. A distant second, mind you, but second nonetheless. He and Rice were responsible for importance being placed on a relatively new statistical category – YAC, yards after catch.

I covered his entire career in Buffalo and I believe the Bills probably wouldn’t have made it to four Super Bowls without him. He helped pave Jim Kelly’s way to Canton. The two of them became one of the most dangerous passing combinations in the game's history.

But wide receivers often have a tough time achieving enshrinement. The fact that Reed is competing for a bust at the same time as Cris Carter and Tim Brown has created a wide receiver log-jam. And they’re soon going to be accompanied by a number of guys with stats inflated by the fact the league is more pass-happy than ever before thanks to NFL rules that make even looking at a receiver the wrong way grounds for pass interference.


The biggest snub from yesterday’s Hall voting was Bill Parcells. How do you deny entry of the former Giants, Jets and Patriots coach with the two Super Bowl rings when you’ve already inducted a number of coaches (Marv Levy, Bud Grant among them) who never won the Roman numeral game?

That’s not to say Levy and Grant don’t belong; they do. But, come on, Parcells was a dominant coach for more than a decade.

And the timing of having him go in this year would have been so cool, considering two members of his coaching tree – Giants head coach Tom Coughlin and Patriots head coach Bill Belichick – are squaring off in Super Bowl 46.


Speaking of Canton, a win today should probably lock up a future spot for Coughlin. It would give him two Super Bowl titles and move him into a tie with Levy for 17th place on the NFL's all-time victory list.

The interesting twist on this is that should Coughlin gain induction he would join his Syracuse backfield mates - Floyd Little and Larry Csonka - in Canton. I wonder if there is another collegiate backfield that could make the same claim.


I like the Giants in a nail-biter, 30-27. You can read my reasons why at Channel 8’s website,


Didn’t take Fab Melo long to remind us how important he is to this year’s Syracuse basketball team. The 7-foot sophomore center from Brazil’s high-energy performance - a career-high 14 points along with three rebounds and two blocks in just 21 minutes upon his return in yesterday’s rout of St. John’s – was further evidence that the Orange men are a Final Four contender with him and just a nice team without him. He changes the entire dynamic for them on both ends of the floor, particularly in the back of that 2-3 zone.

It’s going to feel like old times in the Carrier Dome Wednesday night when the red-hot Georgetown Hoyas lock horns with second-ranked Syracuse. Savor it, because with SU going to the ACC, this rivalry is destined to become a distant memory.


Looking forward to speaking at the Rochester Rotary at the Riverside Convention Center this Tuesday at noon. I’ll be talking about my book, Color Him Orange: The Jim Boeheim Story, and the good and bad issues on and off the court regarding the SU hoops program.

No comments: