Sabol leads a stellar 2011 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class

You can expect a film crew like a Hollywood movie set this summer in Canton, Ohio  when pro football documenting  legend Ed Sabol of NFL Films and 6 other members of the 2011 Pro Football Hall of Fame class are inducted

Come this summer, the ranks of the Pro Football Hall of Fame will increase to 260 members.  The PHOF’s 44-member Selection Committee –- probably after some contenious moments — decided that that the greatest fraternity in sports should grow by seven new members.

In a new format that really added to the drama of the selection process, the new “Gold Jacket” brigade were announced live in primetime on NFL Network. I thought the selection committee did a great job in putting together an A-list enshrinee class that will surely fill Canton, Ohio come this summer.  Of course this non-voting scribe was pleasantly surprised that I got 5 of 7 picks right in my predictions — still have questions about Willie Roaf missing out though.

Unfortunately for another year some great names were left on the sidelines, like receivers Cris Carter, Andre Reed, and Tim Brown.  Also it had to pain first timers Jerome Bettis and Curtis Martin to not get in this time around as their phone never rang either – checkout my Top 10 list of players deserving to be in the Hall of Fame from a few years ago….Thankfully 3 people on the list are now in.  However I believe many of these NFL legends will soon get their day in the sun at Fawcett Stadium, but it just won’t be this year. 

I was probably most personally happy for Ed Sabol (94) of NFL Films.  As someone that has worked with his venerable organization on more than a few projects, I have to emphatically say that his ground-breaking work deserved the recognition.  If you ever want to know where the “flame” of the NFL lives, take a pilgrimage to Mount Larel, NJ . The patriarch and his son, Steve, through infinite miles of tape – ever since bidding $3,000 dollars to film the 1962 NFL Championship Game — have documented the journey of the National Football League from it’s crewcut rustbelt roots to the multiemedia giant that you see today.  Almost everything you see in filming sports started with the Sabol’s.  Ed will go into the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a “contributor”, which is a title that really doesn’t give him and NFL Films the credit that they deserve.

Alright that is enough debating, lamenting, and singling out as now it is time to celebrate the entire enshrinement 2011 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

  • Richard Dent – Defensive End – 1983-1993, 1995 Chicago Bears, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1996 Indianapolis Colts, 1997 Philadelphia Eagles
  • Marshall Faulk – Running Back – 1994-1998 Indianapolis Colts, 1999-2005 St. Louis Rams
  • *Chris Hanburger – Linebacker – 1965-1978 Washington Redskins
  • *Les Richter – Kicker, Middle Guard, Middle Linebacker —  1954-1962 LA Rams
  • Ed Sabol – Contributor (NFL Films), who has been associated with the league since 1966
  • Deion Sanders – Cornerback, Return man, Wide Receiver –  1989-1993 Atlanta Falcons, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1995-1999 Dallas Cowboys, 2000 Washington Redskins, 2004-2005 Baltimore Ravens
  • Shannon Sharpe – Tight End – 1990-99, 2002-03 Denver Broncos, 2000-01 Baltimore Ravens



Lloyd Vance is a Sr. NFL Writer for Taking It to the House and Sports Journey Network , who is also an award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA)


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