The Book of Mike

"This is no junior college. This is the notorious University of Miami.” -- Marlins starter Dontrelle Willis, after getting knocked around for six runs in 2 1/3 innings by the Canes.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Kurt Warner and the Hall of Fame

The Cardinals recent success has increased the talk of Kurt Warner's chances to make the Hall of Fame. It's an interesting discussion. Kurt's NFL career has been only two things: 1) great or 2) underwhelming.

The latter is what folks use to make the case against Kurt's enshrinement in the Hall of Fame, regardless of the outcome of Sunday's game or Kurt's performance in it.

One key fact is often overlooked in the discussion: Kurt's sucess in the Arena Football League.

How is that relevant? Well, we're talking about the Pro Football Hall of Fame. There is no NFL Hall of Fame. The voting is just tied into the NFL and the Super Bowl because traditionally the best pro football players have been in the NFL (at least for the past 50 years).

It's also quite convenient that the entry criteria for the Pro Football Hall of Fame is very vague. If you've ever heard Peter King talk or write about the subject, you probably walked away more confused than you were at the beginning of the conversation. I suppose that's how the voters maintain their job security: confusion.

But that's not fair to Kurt Warner. Not only is he a two time NFL Most Valuable Player, Super Bowl champion, and Super Bowl MVP, but he has also been named one of the top 20 Arena League Players of all time.

Sure, Kurt's Hall of Fame credentials are not helped by NFL longevity. But his periods of greatness are virtually unmatched. His Arena League accomplishments are noteworthy. And his off the field story (obstacles he overcame to make it to the league) at least equal the story of anyone else in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Regardless of the outcome of Sunday's game, Kurt Warner deserves to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.


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