September 24, 2022

Bucs Life

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Barber HOF “snub” a Farce

3 min read

Ronde Barber | Courtesy of bucpower.com

The final outpost of sense in the NFL landscape came crumbling down as Ronde Barber was again snubbed for Hall of Fame enshrinement.

The HOF is the pinnacle of the NFL. Those players that left an indelible mark on the game are immortalized in Canton, OH. Some of the greatest names that have ever stepped onto a field have busts. Moments that define the game and the players that made those moments happen, shine down from displays. One place containing the greatest of the great.

Anyone who actually follows football at this point, they know that is the brochure. The advertising pitch for the Hall of Fame. When in reality, we know it’s a farce.

Yes, the “Hall” is hard to get into, and our very own Ronde Barber has again been snubbed. But fear not, a more worthy competitor was enshrined in the place of the legendary CB, maybe? Hopefully?

Nope!

Former Green Bay Packer LeRoy Butler did make the cut, however. With a long career of 12 seasons and 181 games played in Wisconsin. Posting 38 career regular-season interceptions and a lone pick in 14 playoff appearances (his rookie season).

When compared against Barber, those stats are not HOF worthy. The former Buccaneer has played longer, 241 games, has recorded more stats in every worthwhile positional indicator, including 47 picks in the regular season. Eight of those picks were returned to the house. In just 10 playoff appearances, Barber doubled the interceptions of Butler, including an interception returned to clinch the NFC Championship game. LeRoy Butler is certainly a popular player in Green Bay, just as Ronde is in Tampa. But that is where the similarities end, career-wise. Butler was a reliable Corner Back for the duration of his career, Ronde Barber revolutionized the nickel corner role.

The only player to record 47 regular-season interceptions, and 28 regular season sacks over a career. Barber fits the criteria for every possible condition for entry to the Hall, except for one! An outstanding athlete and single-team player for 16 seasons, Barber would only not play a full season in his rookie year. He is and always has been an upstanding member of the community. He has a championship ring and an incredible highlight reel from that Super Bowl run.

What more can he do?

Apparently, the answer would be to have played in a bigger market.

Nobody can doubt that Barber has had a greater impact on the game and his team. With this recent snub, it’s time for the NFL to rename the Professional Football Hall of Fame to; The Hall of Really Nice Guys Who are Great at Networking and who Played in Big Markets.

This recent enshrinement has sadly killed off the last piece of integrity this game once had. It would be wonderful to hear from the voters who snubbed Barber for Butler and hear those reasons why. Sadly we most likely wouldn’t hear those, as these voters would be forced to either look clueless about the players and careers of those they are responsible for voting on or admit that political shenanigans dictate who is deemed “worthy” by the NFL.

Slowly and piece by piece. The game we love is dying. This isn’t the death blow at all, merely a symptom of the decay. The game is no longer about yards and inches. No longer about doing your job and beating the player in front of you. It’s now up for negotiation.