SI Vault
October 16, 1995
To say that John Elway is beyond Johnny Unitas is football blasphemy.CARL WHITEHEAD JR. ARLINGTON, VA.
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October 16, 1995


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To say that John Elway is beyond Johnny Unitas is football blasphemy.

Hall of Famers
On the bubble? Who were the eight knuckleheads who said Rod Woodson should not go to the Hall (Eyes on the Prize, Sept. 4)? That guy is a Pro Bowl cornerback and was on the 75th Anniversary team—which was supposed to contain the best players ever.
DARRELL PEARSON, Bullhead City, Aziz.

When I learned that Marcus Allen, ninth on the alltime rushing list and fourth on the touchdown list, is considered on the bubble for the Hall of Fame, my faith in the intelligence of sportswriters and broadcasters hit a new low.
KEVIN STUDER, Emporia, Kans.

Don't hard work and consistency count for anything anymore? Jackie Slater, listed as being on the bubble, deserves to be in the Hall as much as Jerry Rice or Dan Marino. Slater is the last of the true warriors. He plays the offensive line's toughest position, tackle, and has outlasted many quarterbacks and kickers.
SCOTT HAMES, Calgary, Alberta

Andre Reed as a "longer shot" to make the Hall of Fame? Obviously your panelists did not look at statistics when they made their decisions. Reed is almost certain to finish his career among the top five in all receiver categories. Year after year he puts up impressive numbers. You refer to Lynn Swann as having been left out for "flimsy reasons." If Swann should be in the Hall, then Reed should be upgraded to a shoo-in, and those 33 Hall of Fame voters whom you polled should be the ones on the bubble.

Is the Hall of Fame vote like the Pro Bowl, a popularity contest? Neither Dan Marino nor Jim Kelly has a Super Bowl ring, so what are the criteria? Stats? Kelly is on every NFL list of alltime greats for yards passing, completion percentage and touchdowns. He is fourth on the alltime quarterback rating list, right below Marino and ahead of many Hall of Fame quarterbacks. Kelly has the stats and has been to the Super Bowl four times, and he's a long shot? What gives? Was he supposed to win the big one all by himself?

Forget the Hash and dance—Deion Sanders can flat-out play. Is he the best pure cover man in the NFL? Yes. Is he the greatest cover man ever? Arguably. However, you can't argue about the numbers Sanders has put up, even in his years on the hapless Atlanta Falcon defense. He shouldn't be listed in the back of the pack.

Top 25
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Notre Dame plays the three service academics and will beat them all (Top 25, Aug. 28). The implication of course is that the Irish play a soft schedule this year. Well, surprise, surprise, of the remaining eight games on their schedule, five are with teams in your Top 25. These include USC (your top-ranked team), Texas, a Boston College team whose season would be made with a win in South Bend, and consecutive road games at Ohio State and Washington. Ohio State is the only other ranked team to play more teams in your Top 25.

All major-college football teams have some easy games. It's the other games that make the difference.
JAMES M. THELEN, West Nyack, N.Y.

Name Game
Your Sept. 18 SCORECARD on interesting names of teammates leaves out what was my favorite battery of all time: the Washington Senators' combination of Wynn and Early in the 1940s. The exhortation was magnified because Wynn's first name was Early. It then became Early Wynn and (Jake) Early. Unfortunately, the Senators usually lost—and early.

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