Cris Carter selected to Hall of Fame after missing out five times
BY SEAN JENSEN firstname.lastname@example.org February 2, 2013 9:38PM
Updated: March 4, 2013 6:56AM
NEW ORLEANS — The 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame is a strong one, featuring a range of some of the best at their respective positions:
Perennial Pro Bowl guard Larry Allen, offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden, receiver Cris Carter, defensive tackle Warren Sapp, coach Bill Parcells and senior selections Curley Culp and Dave Robinson.
Many were beaming and proud of the ultimate honor, but Carter was emotional after needing six years to get in, despite owning numbers second to all-time great Jerry Rice.
“This is the happiest day of my life,” Carter said on the NFL Network telecast. “I really, really wanted this.”
A supplemental fourth-round pick in 1987, Carter battled alcohol and drug addiction and was released by the Philadelphia Eagles. The Minnesota Vikings claimed him, and he turned his life around, posting remarkable career numbers: 1,101 catches, 13,899 yards and 130 receiving touchdowns.
The five who didn’t make it from the final 10 also had strong credentials. Among those who didn’t make it were former San Francisco 49ers owner Eddie DeBartolo Jr., Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jerome Bettis, defensive end Charles Haley, defensive end Michael Strahan, receiver Andre Reed and cornerback Aeneas Williams.
Bringing in the bling
Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was named the Associated Press Most Valuable Player of the Year, highlighting all the honors handed out Saturday.
“I played my heart out every opportunity that I had,” said Peterson, who also was the Offensive Player of the Year.
Former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator/interim coach and new Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians, a finalist for the Bears’ coaching vacancy, was the AP Coach of the Year.
Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning was named the Comeback Player of the Year. Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten was the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year.
Bears cornerback Charles Tillman was named the Salute to Service Award winner for his efforts to honor members of the U.S. military.
During the Bears’ bye week, Tillman visited Fort Hood in Texas, making donations to critically ill children and their families through his “Charles’ Locker” program.
Contributing: Adam L. Jahns