Will They
EVER
Get It Right?


Fans Speak Out
Why are a handful of HOF-caliber Steelers from the 70's being denied their rightful place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame? Every year, I get pumped up thinking surely this will be the year for at least Swann & Stallworth to get in, only to come crashing down yet again. Why are they not in? Is it because they played along side so many other great players? To me, that logic is ridiculous. What kind of numbers would Swann have put up had he played for a pass-oriented team like San Diego back then? Don't EVEN try to tell me those guys wouldn't have been just as great anywhere in the league! This pisses me off as much as anything else going on these days, and I worry that with each passing year, the number of sportswriters voting for induction that actually remember these guys dwindles. When will these idiots wise up?


CLICK HERE to read more of my heated views on this topic.


The following articles are listed in the order they were received (with the most recent entries at the top). This isn't a "guestbook" format... I read and manually insert every message, so you may not see your submission show up immediately. Thanks a million for your comments, people!



Submitted by John Scully
When I was a kid, I used to be called "The White Lynn Swann" LOL. I used to practice catching footballs every single day! I wore Swann's number, tried to write my S's like he did in my last name, etc., etc. The man was great and I am his biggest fan. In 1982 when he retired, I was 15 years old I remember walking out of my house in a daze. I walked over to my friend's house and he was saying "Shat's wrong?" I said, "Swann retired today." It was like someone had died! Anyway, the 'Miracle Catch' he made in Super Bowl X... the 53 yarder... to me is the GREATEST reception EVER! The fact that Lynn Swann is not in the Hall of Fame is CRAZY! On every field in America, a kid either wants to be a WR, RB or QB... if you asked any potential WR "WHO DO U WISH U COULD BE LIKE?" he would answer you "LYNN SWANN." If Swann does not get in, then no one should get in.



Submitted by Barry Fox
When I was growing up, I wanted to be two be like two people that I looked up to when it came to football and basketball; Lynn Swann and Julius Erving. What in the world is going on? You mean to tell me you have to have 100 catches in one season to be a Hall of Famer? I remember when we would play football in our neighborhood. I impersonated Lynn Swann from the soft hands to the great leaping ability. Guys in my neighborhood at that time remember the catch that he made against the L.A. Rams. I was so silent when he came down on the ground so hard. Does Peter King remember the catch Swann made in the Super Bowl against the Cowboys? I guess he's thinking, "Why should we keep putting Steelers in the Hall of Fame? They have too many already." When will the voters finally think of how Swann contributed in those four Super Bowl victories and how he made those great catches and the passes were not always great spirals or right to the numbers and were way up in the air? Ask Yancey Thigpen, Jerry Rice, John Stallworth, Tony Hill, Drew Pearson, or any defensive back at that time. They will tell you how much they respect the play of Lynn Swann. When they do decide, I hope they also remember a tall lanky fella named John Stallworth. Stop feeding us bull.



Submitted by Christian Boddie
Dear Tim and Sandy:

I came across your web page at work and found it extremely entertaining. Congratulations on the birth of your new child. Between work and your newborn I am sure your life is very hectic. I want to commend you on your web page it is outstanding. I am a Dallas Cowboy fan, please do not hate me. I have always had tremendous respect for the Steeler organization. First of all the reason Swann gets screwed every year is quite simple... in the last fifteen years football has become a game dominated by numbers. Swann does not have the numbers these geeks are looking for. Does that make him any less of a receiver? Hell no, but Art Monk because of his streak will get in before Swann or Stallworth will. Terry Bradshaw was quoted as saying that Stallworth was the receiver that most defenses feared because he was the more physical of the two. The biggest problem I have had with the HOF criteria is that it seems to change regarding the situation. I am sure you have been to Canton, and the rules state in order to be inducted the player in question needs to be dominant at his position for a period of time. I think the Steelers domination of the seventies qualifies as dominating. Unfortunately, as long as Fat Ass Peter King has a vote Swann and Stallworth may forever be screwed. I can see some other dominant players of their era being harmed by this as well. Men like Mark Bavaro, best tight end in football for five years no argument, Charles Haley, moody and disliked by teammates and the media, Jim Kelly & Thurman Thomas to closely associated with the Super Bowl Losses. I could continue but I am sure you get the point.

Let me know if you are going to be at the draft. Take care and keep up the good work.

Christian Boddie



Submitted by Patrick Vest
I'm so glad to have stumbled on to your site again after a few years. How it has grown. Very nice. And I'm further thrilled that you have a place for thoughts on Lynn Swann.

When I was a boy, the number on my chest was 88. The name on the back: Swann. He was my hero. He was graceful and and magical and although he was never the focus of the offense, he was just as important to winning four superbowls as Franco, Terry, Jack, Jack or Mean Joe.

Instead of dwelling on my anger toward the Hall of Fame and its ridiculous bean-counter mentality to induction, I'd like to share a memory of Lynn Swann and how his demeanor on the field shaped the person I am.

I was born in the City of Champions, but lived there only for the first seven years of my life, and although these are formative years indeed, my true love for the Steelers didn't get cemented until I moved to rural Ohio. I lived in a very small town in Ohio, filled mostly with Bengal fans, and back in the day, that was quite the rivalry. Well, somehow my Dad scored us tickets to the Steeler/Bengal game in Cincinatti. It was freezing, one of those midwestern storms had swept through Cincy, basically shutting it down. My dad tried to talk me out of going to the game, but for a chance to see Swann in action, there was no temperature too low. But the thing is, we didn't even know if Swann would play. He had been knocked around pretty good by Tatum or Atkinson and was coming off a concussion, but still I had to go. Our seats were in the endzone, although the stadium was nowhere near capacity, so we could've probably moved to anywhere we wanted, but we were above the tunnel to the Steelers locker room, so we stayed put.

It was really cold, and although it's been more than twenty years, I still recall how tough a decision it was to stay there, but my dad was a good sport and remained with me. Right before halftime, Swann caught a pass going across the middle, and stayed on the ground. Can you imagine my horror? This was shaping up to be the worst day of my life. Freezing, losing and Swann not getting up. Finally, he got up and was assisted from the field. Being that it was close to halftime, the trainer walked Swanny towards the dressing room. As he crossed under the goal post, he reached out his hand to stop the trainer, and with his helmet in his other hand, he turned around to watch the rest of the drive. I'll never forget that. A man coming off of a concussion, heading to the training room for treatment cared so much about his team and about winning that he stood in the freezing cold to see if his guys could put a few more points on the board.

To bastardize Shakespeare: "This is a man, when comes such another?"

Swann didn't return in the second half. The Steelers lost the game. But those eventualities didn't matter. The life lessons I learned from this sports hero that I looked up to had cemented themselves into my mind forever.

So, yeah, maybe Swann would be the player with the fewest catches in the Hall of Fame; but shouldn't the WR with the fewest receptions be the one with the biggest and best? Sure, Swann would be yet another Steeler in the HOF, but without him, they wouldn't have won Super Bowl X, and I'd wager they wouldn't have wone XIII or XIV either. It's not Swann's fault that he wasn't the centerpiece of their scheme, but he was always there when it counted. It's not Swann's fault that headhunters like Tatum and Atkinson lived to knock him out of the game and send him to early retirement. What he did, no other man was capable of. He belongs in the company of Gale Sayers and Barry Sanders. But more importantly he belongs in the company of his comrades in Canton, Ohio.

Thanks for your website!
Patrick



Submitted by Don "Muddy Water" Rossbach
What did Dan Rooney do to deserve to be in the Hall Of Fame? It was his DAD, not him, who built the Super Bowl Championship Teams of the '70's. I am glad he made it, but I just don't understand how he can be there but Swann & Stallworth can't. It is wrong, really wrong, to deny them their rightful place in the Hall Of Fame. I still think Peter King is a Cowboy fan and is still upset about his team getting their butts kicked by the MIGHTY STEELERS in 2 Super Bowls. Peter King is an idiot.



Submitted by John Scully
HELLO! my name is John Scully. I am a professional boxer from CT. When I was a kid, all i wanted to be was LYNN SWANN! I am without a doubt his biggest fan ever. I used to be a Steelers lunatic until june of 1982 when Swann retired. I have not watched with any interest ever since. I just read your profile of him and it was great. I agree 100 percent! The man influenced people like Collinswoth, John Jefferson, and even Jerry Rice to name a few. WHY do you think they are keeping him out of the Hall of Fame? I hear two reasons... 1) There are already too many steelers from the late 70 's, and 2) because swann crossed the picket line ion '74. Either way, HE DESERVES TO BE THERE! WHAT MORE CAN U TELL ME ABOUT SWANN?



Submitted by Douglas Brown
Thanks so much for keeping your outstanding site up and running all year. As always I found it very informative and entertaining. Hopefully next year will be a better one for the Steelers and for Swann and Stallworth who continue to be blocked from the HOF simply because they played on a team with too many great players instead of on sound merit.

Again, Congratulations on the latest addition to your Steeler Clan!



Submitted by General Destruction
Well, it was no surprise that Peter King and his band of idots have screwed Swann & Stallworth agian in the annual HOF voting. All I ever hear out of those pricks is look at the years played and the total yards and yards per catch, agianst other HOF wide receivers or HOF hopefulls at the WR posistion. Well, all I've got to say is this... I'll bet if I gave Peter King a million years and more chances to catch a pass, his fat ass couldn't do better than a pee wee football player. That goes for his co-conspirators also. Swann made catches that people only dreamed of making to win the big game for our favorite team (STEELERS). Swann didn't dream about it, he made it a reality. You talk about making the big plays that ultimately swing the momentum in your team's favor or win the big the big championship (Super Bowl), Swann & Stallworth did it. Only Johnny Jefferson that I can recall made freaky catches like that on a consistant basis. Swann & Stallworth kicked major ass! Peter King & Co. suck major ass!!!

Sincerly,
Gener Destruction
Broadcasting to you from deep within enemy (Dallas Cowgirls) territory.



Submitted by Tom Bragg
The Hall of Fame sportswriters proved once again just how truly STUPID they really are. They wisely induct Joe Montana and Ronnie Lott, both of whom are worthy members. However, after that they induct Howie Long over Lynn Swann. I dare any man to tell me that Howie Long was more valuable and made more of an impact on his team than Lynn Swann did for the Steelers! It is absolutely mind-boggling that Swann could be left out this year in what was one of the weakest fields in recent memory. A four-time world champion and Super Bowl MVP means absolutely nothing to these IDIOT sportswriters! The sportswriters and the Hall of Fame should give Swann a big fat hug and kiss because they have been royally SCREWING him for years! The Hall of Fame is nothing but a complete and total joke! To hell with them!!!

Tom Bragg
http://community.webtv.net/francoharris/TomsPittsburgh



Submitted by Jimmy Grant
Once again, the great receiver Lynn Swann will sit and watch during the Hall of Fame inductions. What a joke! How the f*ck did Howie Long get in? Are you F*cking serious? Dave Wilcox? I hope I see Peter King at the induction and those other fat, incompetent idiots. Even Dan Rooney... for what? Lynn got totally robbed... AGAIN!

Jimmy


The following articles were submitted the week prior to Swann's snubbing by the Hall of Fame in January of 2000.



Submitted by Jimmy Grant
If people want to look at stats, just check Swann's Super Bowl stats... 3 starts, 16 receptions 364 yards, 3 TDs, and almost 23 yards per grab. I'll be at Canton in July if for no other reason but to see Joe Montana get in to the hall. However, I can't see in this class how Swann-ee could miss. The real BS will come if TV nice guy Howie Long gets in and Swann doesn't. But that could happen with some of the idiots we have voting.

Jim Grant



Submitted by Vince Azzarello
I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed reading the information on your Steelers Page. I too have been a fan of the Steelers since I was young. I've book marked your page and plan on visiting often.

One additional comment. I believe the lack of Hall of Fame consideration for Swann, Stallworth, Greenwood and perhaps Shell, is due to the politics of the NFL. I had the fortune of attending all of the current Steelers' induction speeches and I believe that the NFL wants to avoid the scene created by the Steelers fans. I was disappointed in some of our fellow fans when they would chant "DEFENSE, DEFENSE", in the middle of some other player's speech. Here he is being inducted into the Hall of Fame, the climax of his career, and the fans could care less. For what it is worth, I think this is the reason the 70's players will not get in the Hall anytime soon.

Enough of my soapbox. Thanks for a great page!! Go Steelers!!

Vince Azzarello



Submitted by Bill Fidler
The Steelers of the 70's were the greatest team to ever hit the gridiron, PERIOD! Lynn Swann (my personal favorite player of all time), as well as every member of that illustrious team, should be in the HOF. The Steelers had it all, and Swannie defined the aerial assault. He simply was magic in the air. When I think of wide-receiver, I think of Lynn Swann. And Stallworth was fantastic as well. What a combo those two made! I don't see that being duplicated any time soon. It's not only an absurdity that these two aren't in the HOF, it's an insult--not only to Steelers fans, but all football fans. These stats-counting pinheads need to get their heads out from their collective ass an induct Swann and Stallworth into the Hall of Fame where they belong.

Bill Fidler



Submitted by AG7JG22
I totally agree. Swann and Stallworth not in the Hall of Fame is a joke. You see receivers like Tommy McDonald get in (not that he wasn't good), but Christ, he couldn't hold Swann or Stallworth's jocks, and yet these two are omitted. My friend who thinks they don't belong in there and I argue about this all the time. My biggest point about this is the game is totally different today than it was when they played. It was more of a running league then and DBs could physically abuse receivers. Today, it is freaking touch football practically and teams throw 40+ times a game. Look at the big game performances and compare them to what they did in their primes. Not at sheer numbers. To me, even some Jerry Rice is inferior to Swann and Stallworth when you look at the HUGE plays they made. The main problem is, most of these sportswriters like fat ass Peter King never played they game. In fact, the only balls Peter King ever played with...ah, nevermind, I think you get the point!!!



Submitted by Scan0371
Yes, he should be in the Hall of Fame. Some of the voters are merely concentrating on statistics alone. What a terrible way to judge one's contribution to the game. Everyone knows who Lynn Swann is... and he retired following the '82 season. Its the "Hall of Fame," not the "Hall of Statistical Achievement." If they're going to vote strictly on statistics, then where are Cliff Branch, Harold Carmichael and Drew Pearson? We remember Swann because he played his best when it mattered most... in the Super Bowl. Why is Joe Namath in the Hall of Fame? It certainly isn't for his statistics (he completed only 50% of his passes for his career and missed many, many games due to injury). Namath is in because he was a memorable and charismatic player (Super Bowl III and his guaranteed victory to be specific). Lynn Swann is memorable, too, and for that reason deserves his day of recognition.



Submitted by Sheldon McGruder
NEWS FLASH: SWANN GETS IN THIS YEAR!!!...

...OR IT COULD BE THAT I'M JUST FULL OF $#!T AND HAVE NO FREAKIN' IDEA OF WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!!!

Mr. T, (..."I PITY the fool!!!...")

You know, "Tim". "Mr. T"?...Get it??? Okay, sorry. Never mind.

Okay, shake those bad images of George Peppard sporting a cigar, and the aforementioned buffoon with his shaved head and sideburns-gone-wrong-with-more-jewelry-hanging-around-his- neck-than-Deion-Sanders-who,-by-the-way,-will-be-on-my- McMillen and Wife's "10 Most Hated List"-if-I-ever-get-off- my-ass-and-take-the-time-to-make-one-and-mail-it-in. Whew! That should fill my hyphen quota for the month of January.

Now -- where in the HELL was I? Ahhhh yes. The point of this whole e-mail. I think that this year the Hall of Fame numb- nuts guys will vote in Lynn Swann. You, undoubtedly, are at this point wondering why I might think this. Glad you asked. Allow me, if you will, to lay some facts on you.

This year, the Hall of Fame dudes (hereafter referred to as the HOFDs), have 71 nominees from which to choose 12 finalists. The 13th and 14th "modern-era" finalists will be Howie Long and Swann because they finished in the top six in the voting for the Hall's 1999 class, but were not elected. [By the way, as a HUGE aside, you should rent the video "Election" if you didn't already see it at the theater when it came out... Hillarious!!]

At this point, you may be saying, 'Okay, Shel, but you haven't provided me with any information that I couldn't have gotten off the internet already.' To which I would reply, "You sarcastic BASTARD YA'!!!" Just kidding. I wouldn't really do that. I'm a nice guy. REALLY!

So the question (and the point, hopefully in your mind, to this whole e-mail) is...WHO will get elected to the Hall on Jan. 29?

Let's start with the "sure things"(with apologies to John Cusack). Joe Montana and Ronnie Lott, in my opinion, are in. There's no doubt. Those are the ONLY members of the 27-member First-Time Eligibles list that will make it.

Seeing as how the HOFDs usually elect 4-6 members each year, and I've accounted for two of those with Montana and Lott, let's say we've got four left to play with, for argument's sake. I've seen the list of First-Time Eligibles and with the execption of Montana and Lott, there shouldn't be any more of those guys. We're talking Jay Schroeder and Clarence Verdin here. There are some guys in this first-timers group who were genuine hard-ass balllplayers: Steve McMichael, Mark Bavaro, Tim Krumrie, Charles Mann, Mike Kenn, Karl Mecklenburg, Steve Jordan, and Leonard Marshall. But these guys are not HOF-worthy on their first try. That's just my opinion and I'm entitled to it.

So, 71 - 27 = 44. Let's now look at the 44 remaining. They are referred to as "Additional Nominees" and their lot is made up of such names as Stabler, Casper, Kuechenberg, Youngblood, and Gradishar. Oh, and also Swann, Stallworth, Greenwood, and Shell.

I just have a very hard time seeing how the HOFDs could come up with four more enshrinees (and it could be more) without including Swann. If it's any consolation, if Swann didn't make it I don't see how they could miss Greenwood or Stallworth. There just aren't that many slots and qualified players with which to fill them.

Okay...so maybe my argument at this point breaks down into what could be considered biased-homerism, but holy shit guys!! Look at the f***ing list!! It HAS to be Swann in there somewhere!

[Well, THAT was certainly a non-emotional, non-biased couple of sentences. Honestly!...I didn't plan this out before I typed it. It just IS what it IS.]

I'm telling you. I've seen the list. There are some very worthy ballplayers there...I grew up watching these guys and thinking they f***in' ruled. But if they don't choose Swann this year out of that group then someone's getting paid. Probably a friend of Tex F***king Schramm's. Sheldon



Submitted by STEELRSFRK
"THOSE HANDS"

You look at the individuals being inducted into Canton and MUST wonder how these Swann & Stallworth can be missed. The voters need to start looking at not just overall stats, but the contributions the individuals made to their team and the league. To me, a clutch 5-yard reception for a first down in a big game is must more important than a 60 yard TD reception when your team is already winning by three scores. Think about it!

Do the voters think the Steelers would have been as successful without #82 and #88 for #12 to throw the ball to? Their presence and talent on the field, in many peoples eyes, cannot be matched. THOSE HANDS... were magical! Look at some of the receptions, Mr. King, and then look at how many clutch, game-turning receptions were made by these two individuals. Those hands don't lie!



Submitted by Sheldon McGruder
The Hall of Fame thing does seem pretty abysmal every year. You've got these narrow-minded bastards who focus on their one thing whether it's stats (as in Swann's case), or some bad play this guy made that everyone remembers, or the fact that that guy never played on a Super Bowl winner. They choose some very deserving players, usually obvious choices, and overlook what SHOULD be equally obvious choices (read: Swann and Stallworth). It takes someone, a particular sportswriter for example, to lobby year in and year out for a player and hopefully open the eyes of some of these chuckleheads. Hopefully, they get through. In the meantime, you just gnash your teeth.

You and others that you've posted on your page have made the key points well enough: look at what Swann did during money games and the fact that everyon who knew football in the '70s recognized that he was the premier wide receiver of the decade. More to the point, even people who DIDN'T follow football knew Lynn Swann's name, who he was, and who he played for. As for Stallworth, he didn't have the name-recognition of Swann in your grandmother's quilting circle. But again, those who are supposed to truly know the game, oh, I don't know... let's say the people who VOTE on who gets inducted into the Hall of Fame... should know better. All I can add about those individuals is -- they must shave with electric razors because I'll bet when they look in a mirror, there is no reflection.

Take care,
Sheldon



Submitted by Dennis "DDogg" Wright
You know, there's gettin' something wrong, and then there's just being blantantly stupid. How in the hell can you not induct Lynn Swann and John Stallworth into the hall of fame? This topic has been festering in the minds of Steelers fans all over the country and with good reason.

The Hall of Fame voters (Sportswriters) are supposed to be professionals. They are supposedly selected because they have extensive knowledge on football and the thousands of players that have graced the gridiron of the NFL. I can't begin to display my disgust for the hall of fame voters.

Lynn Swann and John Stallworth played in a day when running was much more emphasized than passing (unlike today) and the rules for defenders were much more lenient. Anyone with an ounce of intelligence knows it takes a hell of an athlete to play under circumstances such as those. I think is it inexcusibly unfair to not recognize, or at least apologize, for not addressing these obvious issues. Swannie and Stallworth brought an element to the Steelers that was unmatched by anyone in that decade. You can quote me on that. If the Steelers played a west-coast offense (which, by the way, wasn't even invented yet), Swann's stats would be breathtaking. But the style that the Steelers played spread the ball around to alot of different people and everyone had a specific role. Swann was the big play guy. And not to be overlooked was Stallworth. In their day, these guys were the best recieving tandem in all the NFL... maybe ever.

It's pretty sad when you also consider the fact that I'm only 15 years old and I can see this. I'm a die hard fan, and as all die hard fans know, Swann and Stallworth belong with the rest of the Steeler greats in the Hall of Fame. I hope, for Swann and Stallworth's sake, that all you Hall of Fame judges out there put the stats aside and decide the outcome based on talent and overall contribution. Swann's S.B. X performance was by far one of the best by any wideout ever... that alone should be enough to help fuel his induction into the hall.

It's really unfair to even try and compare any player's stats from now to anyone's then. Football, like anything else, evolves over time... sometimes for the good and sometimes for the bad (that brings up another issue... instant replay... but I won't even get into that now), but the point is, it's an ever-changing sport. Please don't rob the great athletes out there of their rightful place in the hall because their "stats" didn't look good enough or any other BS like that. Football is about heart, and pride, and belief in yourself, and teamwork. If those words don't describe Swannie and Stallworth, I don't know what does.

And Peter King... I've got just one thing to say to you... open your damn eyes, fat boy. Be a man... step up and give respect where it's rightfully due. That's wht the Hall of Fame was created for... it's supposed to honor football greats. If so, Swann and Stallworth's inductions into the hall are way overdue. By the way, McMillen, your site kick ass... I just now found out about it. Sites like this are what the Steelers are all about. You should be very proud... no other team has a site like this... I can guarantee that!)

Dennis Wright
Las Vegas,NV
DDogg59800@AOL.com



Submitted by Brinley Dempski
In 1975, I was 7 year old boy trying to be Lynn Swann on the snow covered back yards here in northeast PA. Lynn Swann defied the laws of gravity. He would make catches that seemed unreal. He was by far the most acrobatic receiver the game has ever seen (or will see). Not only should Swann be in the hall of fame, there should be a statue of the guy as you walk in the front door. I'm with you, brother... SCREW THE HALL OF FAME!!!



Submitted by Thomas Bragg
I had to take a minute and let you and your loyal readers in on something! I have been looking for e-mail addresses to our BELOVED HALL OF FAME SPORTSWRITERS, and I finally found one of the MAIN CULPRITS! It's our good buddy PETER KING of Sports Illustrated. He can be reached at CNN/SI.COM and he has his own little section called Peter King's NFL MAILBAG. In this section he answers questions about any topic pertaining to the NFL . Believe me when I say I could have jumped for joy ! I sent 'ole Peter a nice long e-mail and basically told him what I thought of him and his other sportswriter buddyies' decision to CHEAT ONE OF THE GREATEST PLAYERS IN THE HISTORY OF THE GAME OUT OF HIS RIGHTFULL PLACE IN THE HALL OF FAME! This may be like locking the barn door after the horse has run away, but it damn sure made me feel better! You might want to consider putting some of this information on your web-site, because this is a SUREFIRE WAY to let off a little steam on a guy that has been a thorn in Lynn Swann's side for years. Just thought you and the rest of the readers would like to know.

IF WE ALL TAKE THE TIME TO LET 'OLE PETER KNOW HOW WE FEEL, WHO KNOWS... MAYBE THIS GUY WILL FINALLY WISE UP!

Thomas D. Bragg


Submitted by David Schinhofen
One more extremely unbiased reason why Lynn Swann must be voted in the HOF.

Below is a list of players (by position) voted by NFL fans on NFL.com as the players they would want to play for them in the Super Bowl. It seems to me that all of these players are, or will end up, in the Hall of Fame. I left out special teams because no player will make it to the Hall of Fame based on special teams play ( with the exception of kickers).

The point is that NFL fans voted Jerry Rice to play opposite of Lynn Swann on the Super Bowl Dream Team. Read the list below and imagine any one of these great players not being inducted into the Hall. If the ninnies that did not vote Swann in to the Hall this year can't get it right, at least the thousands of fans that voted in the Dream Team poll can! For the record, John Stallworth was the third place vote for WR.

SUPER BOWL DREAM TEAM
Offensive Players:
QB Joe Montana
RB Franco Harris and Emmitt Smith
WR Jerry Rice and Lynn Swann
TE Jay Novacek
G Nate Newton and Gene Upshaw
T Anthony Munoz and Joe Jacoby
C Mike Webster

Defensive Players:
LB Jack Lambert, Lawrence Taylor, Mike Singletary and Ray Nitschke
DE Reggie White and Charles Haley
DT Mean Joe Greene
CB Mel Blount and Eric Wright
S Ronnie Lott and Donnie Shell

Coach: Chuck Noll



Submitted by Michael Eaker
I just can't believe the selection committee snubbed our beloved Steelers once again. Lawrence Taylor, of all people! I can't dispute the man's accomplishments on the field... they speak for themselves; however, he has been in and out of jail so many times it makes one's head boggle! Well, I can only say congratulations, "Crackhead Taylor." You didn't deserve it this time around.

Michael Eaker, NC.



Submitted by Mister Azzurri
I, too, get frustrated that Lynn Swann has not been selected for the Hall of Fame. We can argue statistics until the cows come home, but there's one convincing argument that wins over all:

If you were involved in a "mythical" football game that you had to win in order to save your life, and if you could choose any players for your roster that you wanted, your starting wide-receivers would have to be (1)Jerry Rice, and (2) Lynn Swann.

Period.

BTW--I love your website. Keep up the good work!



Submitted by Thomas D. Bragg
Never in all my life of watching professional sports have I been more aggravated, dissappointed, and just plain pissed off than I was on Saturday when Lynn Swann was once again CHEATED out of his rightful place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Would somebody please tell me what the requirements are for a player to make it into the Hall of Fame? Eric Dickerson, Ozzie Newsome, and the great L.T. were all great players, but they still are no more deserving than Lynn Swann. As long as the Hall of Fame judges players soley on statistics, there will be MANY deserving players just like Swann that fall by the wayside, and that is a SAD DAMN THING! The last time I checked, I don't believe that DICKERSON or NEWSOME ever won a SUPER BOWL, nor were they named MOST VALUABLE PLAYER of one, for that matter! As far as L.T. getting in, I will say this... he was definitely one of the best linebackers to come along in a long time. His playmaking abilities on the field speak for themselves. But OFF the field, it's an entirely different story. I think he should've had to sit back and pay his dues just like Lynn Swann has. The contrast between Pro Football Hall of Fame and Major League Baseball Hall of Fame is staggering! At least baseball has standards (in this instance, at least)... a deserving player like Pete Rose has been BANNED from the baseball Hall of Fame because of alledged gambling activities, but the Football Hall of SHAME is quite willing to induct a man that is a convicted felon, accused of buying crack cocaine, and filing false income tax returns (among other things). Personally, I fail to see what the difference is between the two. With Rose, he's an outcast in baseball because of off-the-field activities, but with L.T.m, he's welcomed in with open arms with far more serious offenses. In my way of thinking, something is BADLY WRONG with that picture!!! I wish that any true Steeler fan out there reading this will take it upon themselves to write, or call, or e-mail these IDIOT SPORTSWRITERS and let them know exactly how you feel on this! I'm certainly not silly enough to think we're going to change the selection process this year, but what about the future? If all TRUE STEELER FANS WILL BAN TOGETHER, MAYBE SOMETHING GOOD CAN COME FROM THIS MESS!

HALL OF FAME YOU TRULY ARE THE HALL OF SHAME!!!

Thomas D. Bragg



Submitted by Tim McMillen
The gasp we let out when ESPN announced that Lynn Swann was again bypassed for HOF induction was surpassed only by my wife's gasp when our 2-year old son rather skillfully repeated at least half of the stream of expletives that escaped my mouth upon receiving the bad news. Yikes.

For those of you who haven't heard, the HOF class of '99 consists of running back Eric Dickerson, guard Tom Mack, tight end Ozzie Newsome, guard Billy Shaw, and linebacker Lawrence Taylor (good thing they don't have to include L.T.'s police rap sheet on his HOF plaque... it'd never fit). All are deserving of the honor, with the possible exception of L.T. But unlike baseball, the Pro Football HOF doesn't have a citizenship clause, and with L.T.'s off-the-field indiscretions not part of the equation, he admittedly deserves his spot in Canton for his stellar play. Congratulations, gentlemen.

Lynn Swann was a finalist as usual, reaching the final six for the 2nd time in three seasons, but again narrowly failed to receive the 80% vote required for induction (those stat-driven rat-bastards).

One question seems relevant. Not to take away anything from Ozzie Newsome... I have the utmost respect for what he brought to the the game on & off the field and there's no doubt in my mind that he absolutely deserves enshrinement... but does ANYONE think that his level of greatness surpassed Lynn Swann's? Further proof that the HOF voters are driven by STATS, not careful consideration & common sense.

Of course, Ozzie's stats speak for themselves... very impressive, especially for a TE. But they're no more impressive than John Stallworth's. And Stallworth didn't get in. Why? Because even the idiot sportwriters that vote on this thing every year recognize the Swann was the better of the two, and how can Stallworth get in unless Swann gets in? It's ridiculous. If forced to pick between those three players, I'd take both Swann & Stallworth for my team ahead of Newsome, hands down. Newsome's election is further proof that the voting is almost entirely stats-driven. That's not my bias as a Steelers fan, either... just common sense.

Living in the heart of Browns country, I'm very well aquainted with Newsome and watched him week-in & week-out for all of his 13 years. I'd definitely categorize myself as a Newsome fan and a borderline expert on the guy. I remember well the many great plays by the "Wizard of Oz" and the incredible consecutive-game reception streak he had, and his astounding durability. But Ozzie was never the dominating offensive presence that Lynn Swann was... not even close. Few players were. If someone wants to dispute that, let them send me recounts of Ozzie's game-winning post-season heroics. Let them show me his clutch catches in crunchtime when everything was on the line. Let them show me how he lifted his entire team to a higher level when IT MATTERED. Ozzie played in 3 AFC Championship games and a total of 9 playoff games and scored just ONE TOUCHDOWN. Where was he? In only one of those games did he achieve what I'd consider a "great game" ('86 playoff vs. the Jets), and he was non-existant in all three of the AFC title games. Contrast that with Lynn Swann & John Stallworth. I'm not knocking Ozzie... he deserves to be in the HOF... I'm merely making my case that Swann & Stallworth deserve to be there, too.

And don't give me that, "Well, Swann & Stallworth played for a great team" crap... they are a large part of what MADE that team great. Let's face it... had Ozzie played for the ball-control Steelers of that era, he might've spent much of his time riding the bench (in spite of the impressive receiving statisitcs, he was FAR from the best blocking TE I've ever seen, and last time I checked, a HUGE part of a TE's job is BLOCKING, something the stats-driven HOF voters seem to be oblivious to). And he almost certainly wouldn't be going to Canton.

Swann & Stallworth deserve to be in the HOF (especially Swann). The clock is ticking... in a couple of years, Swann will fall into the "senior" category where only one candidate per year is considered, and his HOF chances will diminish substantially. The ignorance of the stats-driven sportwriters who failed to vote for Swann is disgraceful.

One final observation: The only measuring stick an IGNORANT person can use to deterimine a player's contributions is statistics. The sportswriters on the HOF panel who vote for induction have a RESPONSIBILITY to look beyond the stats (after all, in many respects on paper, Neil O'Donnell is better than Terry Bradshaw, so how much validity can really by assigned to stats?). Lynn Swann has been done a great injustice. Ignorance in this case is not an exceptable excuse.

Tim McMillen
Webmaster of McMillen & Wife


The following articles were submitted the week prior to Swann's snubbing by the Hall of Fame in January of 1999.


Submitted by Anthony Wright
Well, the Hall of Fame finalists have been named, and although L.C. Greenwood's and Donnie Shell's names are not on that list, there ARE names of two former greats who are WAY overdue to be placed into Canton! Those names are John Stallworth, and especially Lynn Swann! Even though every year, the Steelers orginization gets ripped off by not having their former Steeler greats inducted, you can't help but getting your hopes up for these players getting their just due!

I don't mean to harp on this subject, especially being a die-hard San Diego Chargers fan, but you have to be realistic! Everybody that has watched these two players play agree with me I'm sure!

I am 26 years old, and have stuck with the Chargers for at least 20 years, but there is one year that I have to admit I did not know the Chargers existed! At the age of seven, my brother Robert, who is the biggest Steelers fan that I know (along with Tim, of course), used to sit down on the couch with me showing me JC Penney and Sears catologs of the NFL helmets displayed. Not trying to influence my choosing of a team, he asked me which team I liked. For some reason, I quickly picked out the Los Angeles Rams helmet as the team I liked (along with the Chargers). That same year, the Rams and Steelers happened to meet in the Super Bowl. I was so excited to see the team that I had chosen having a chance to be world champions! It was then that I witnessed the awesome Steeler team that would ruin my liking the first team of my NFL life forever!

It was, now that I think back on it, very neat to see my brother, who I look up to most in this world, getting excited watching his Steelers team become World Champions once again (I watched the two previous titles they won against the Cowboys)! And even though it made me cry watching the Rams get beaten by the Steelers, it was then that I admired and realized what a good team the Steelers were!

After that year, I chose a newn team (the Chargers) which I know is no better (ha ha), and I swear I will now stick with THEM until the end. But the Steelers will always be my second team, the team that I feel was the greatest team assembled of all time, and will always be campaigning for those great players to be inducted into the Hall of Fame! (EVEN THOUGH I STILL ENJOY GIVING MY BROTHER A GOOD RIBBING ABOUT MY CHARGERS BEATING THE STEELERS IN THE AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME IN 1994!)



Submitted by Dave Von Schriltz
I think back to the 70's and football, and even if I weren't a Steeler's fan, I couldn't deny that they were THE team. The football historians talk about football prior to the 70's, and all you hear about are quarterbacks, running backs, linebackers and defensive and offensive linemen. It wasn't until Mr. Swann and Mr. Stallworth came along that the wide receiver position became a "glory" position. Receivers catching 10-15 passes per game, racking up 100+ yards per game, and 1,000 yard seasons were unheard of until these two graceful warriors dawned the Black & Gold. They single handedly changed the face of the position and the game. They not only belong in the Hall of Fame, they deserve the keys to the front door! I think that the sports writers in this country have WAY too much power in deciding the fates of athletes and teams at all levels of sports. If Mr. Swann and Mr. Stallworth don't get in the Hall of Fame, they should rename it the "Sports Writers So-Called Hall of Fame." What do they have against the original dynamic duo? Are they not liked because they were humble, which is now judged as boring? Are they not liked because they weren't screaming for the money they deserved or causing problems on and off the field like today's spoiled babies are doing? These two men are the epitome of what the Hall of Fame should represent. Class, pride, accomplishments, loyalty, and selfless team players! If the supposed experts can't see this, then maybe they should find another line of work. I have some ideas for them if the need help finding a new job.

Thanks for giving the fans a place to relay and vent our frustration. Let's hope this topic doesn't have to come up again after this year!

Dave Von Schriltz



Submitted by Nat La Borde
Lynn Swann was the Jerry Rice of the 70's, period. Both Swannie and John Stallworth was way better than any of the so-called "great" receivers of today. They were easily better than Michael "Where's my coke and ho's" Irvin or Andre "I'm the greatest player EVER" Rison. The PANSY-ASSED NANCY BOYS who decide who goes in the Hall are all players or owners who continually got their little BALLS shoved down their geeky little throats thoughout the 70's by THE GREATEST TEAM EVER, THE PITTSBURGH STEELERS!!! [Ed. note: Actually, its a bunch of geeky sportwriters who decide who goes to Canton... if it were players & coaches (who actually know something about football), we wouldn't be having this discussion] Well, I say SCREW the Hall of Fame... everyone knows it... like it or not, who ruled the 70's? Swann and Stallworth were the best ever.

Nat La Borde



Submitted by Shawn M. Lucas
Lynn Swann and John Stallworth belong in the Hall of Fame. It's not about statistics or anything else... they were just as much a part of the Steelers dynasty of the 70's as anyone else. In fact, I think these two guys played a more important role than that of most of the other players. Swann and Stallworth gave Terry Bradshaw two huge targets on the ends that he needed to blossom into the great player that he was. It also stretched the Steelers' offense, making it less predictable. Without Swann and Stallworth, the Steelers probably wouldn't have won any of the Super Bowl titles that they have. For that Swannie and Stallworth deserve to be there.

Shawn



Submitted by Michael Flynn
The fact that Lynn Swann doesn't already have a shrine in Canton brings into question the current system used to vote members into the Hall of Fame. The first thing that springs to mind is that catch against Dallas in Super Bowl X. It is one of the most memorable images in NFL history. That should be on a stamp or something. I could go on & on about Lynn Swann forever. He made plays that no one else could make. He brought down passes that seemed impossible to catch. He stepped it up when he had to & he brought out the best in his teammates & his opponents. Three years ago I found out that he was hanging out at a bar down the street from where I worked. I ran down the street, pen & paper in hand, as fast as I could. What shocked me, besides how polite & accommodating he was, was his size. I'm not a tall guy & I stood eye to eye with him. I thought about this the next time I watched Swann highlights. Amazing. Let's shrink Jerry Rice and Michael Irvin a few inches and see how many catches they make! He signs a cool autograph too. Writes his last name in the shape of a swan. I certainly hope the Hall of Fame wises up.

Michael Flynn



Submitted by Thomas D. Bragg, Part II
This is a sad and unfair thing to say, but the fact is, some very deserving players on the Steelers teams of the 1970's probably will never be inducted into the Hall of Fame. My personal opinion is that Lynn Swann & John Stallworth will eventually get in, but players such as L.C. Greenwood and Donnie Shell will probably never make it. It boils down to politics... once so many Steeler players have made it in, the sportswriters are going to say, "That's it... no more Steelers." This is a ridiculous way of thinking, but that's just the way it is. Another thing to consider is that Greenwood & Shell are caught up in a numbers game. I think that a lot of the sportswriters feel that these guys were just GOOD players on a GREAT team. Thats a idiotic way of thinking, because these were the types of players that could dominate a ballgame regardless of what team they played for. For Swann and Stallworth, the future looks bright, but for Greenwood and Shell, the picture is not as pretty In closing, I have one thing to say to the HALL of FAME... IT'S YOUR LOSS!

Thomas D. Bragg



Submitted by Thomas D. Bragg, Part I
The fact that Lynn Swann has never been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame just goes to show the absolute stupidity of certain people who are supposed to be knowledgable enough to be making these types of decisions! Without question, Swann is the best big game receiver of all time, bar none! This man revolutionized the wide receiver position in the 1970's. The fact that he only played nine seasons should have no bearing on his taking his rightful place in the hall of fame. Lynn Swann did things on the football field that will never be duplicated! If it were a playoff game or a Super Bowl, this truly was the man that could singlehandedly change the outcome of a game. Very few players have had that ability. The ones that did are HALL OF FAMERS! It is a travesty that Swann has been denied as long as he has! Hopefully that comes to a stop in 1999!!!

Thomas D. Bragg



Submitted by Anthony Wright
Now that the Steelers season is over, something that I feel is important has to now be addressed. With the Hall of Fame inductees for 1999 getting close to being named, once again you see Lynn Swann and John Stallworth on the inductee list along with Donnie Shell & L.C. Greenwood. These four players should have been inducted a long time ago! I also believe that along with the players, their respective numbers should also be retired! I think that after watching the domination of the Steelers Super Bowl teams in the early years that ALL the starting members of that team should be retired. I understand that if this indeed were to happen, that the Steelers players of the present and future would be left with numbers in the 100's, but this is just how I feel.

I understand you can't retire everybody's number, but the 88, 82, and 20 should definitely not be worn by another Steeler again! Who are these ignorant people who determine who gets into the Hall of Fame [ed. note: the sportswriters vote on HOF induction each year] and whose number should be retired [ed. note: that one's on the Steelers... they don't retire numbers]? Apparently, they are people who did not appreciate the awesome players and team in that 70's era. Match up the Steelers Super Bowl teams with any of the recent dominating teams from the 49ers, Redskins, Cowboys, and Broncos, and you would see one hell of a game, with the results quite different from the blowouts you've seen.

All the above stems from one thing... LET SWANN, STALLWORTH, SHELL, AND GREENWOOD INTO THE HALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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