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Tribal Warfare
02-05-2011, 02:06 AM
Hall of Fame nominee Roaf gives Chiefs some love (http://www.kansascity.com/2011/02/04/2633750/hall-of-fame-nominee-roaf-gives.html)
By RANDY COVITZ
The Kansas City Star

DALLAS | If Willie Roaf is elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame today, most of the NFL will regard him as the second New Orleans Saints player to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio.

While that might be true, Roaf says it wouldn’t have been possible had he not spent the final four seasons of a 13-year career in Kansas City.

Roaf, in his first year of eligibility, is one of 15 modern-day finalists up for election today. Acquired by the Chiefs in a trade in 2002, Roaf was part of one of the NFL’s most prolific offenses.

“My time in Kansas City really fulfilled my career, especially coming off what I was going through in leaving New Orleans,” said Roaf, who missed the last nine games of the 2001 season with New Orleans because of a knee injury.

When the Saints began offering him around, only two teams, Denver and Kansas City, showed any interest.

“The only offer I had was from Kansas City,” he said. “Carl Peterson and Denny Thum talked to me every day, and for them to bring me in there and give me another chance to play football … my going to Kansas City will be the reason that I would have a chance to get in (the Hall of Fame) on the first ballot.”

“To get to the final vote the first year is a big accomplishment, because for a lot of guys, it takes a while. I have a lot of feelings toward both the Chiefs and Saints, and what I accomplished for both teams is real special to me.”

Roaf, an 11-time Pro Bowler, faces some difficult competition to become one of the modern-day inductees in the Class of 2011. Two others in their first seasons of eligibility, running back Marshall Faulk and cornerback Deion Sanders, appear to be locks. Among the others in their first seasons of eligibility, running backs Curtis Martin and Jerome Bettis rank fourth and fifth, respectively, on the all-time rushing list. Defensive lineman Chris Doleman, who is a finalist for the first time, ranks fourth all time in sacks.

Several previous finalists on the ballot include tight end Shannon Sharpe, wide receivers Cris Carter, Tim Brown and Andre Reed; defensive ends Charles Haley and Richard Dent; and center Dermontti Dawson. And there seems to be growing sentiment to elect NFL Films founder Ed Sabol as a contributor. (Two senior candidates, Les Richter and Chris Hanburger, will be voted on separately.)

Still, it’s hard to ignore Roaf’s body of work. His 11 Pro Bowls are tied with Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz and Jonathan Ogden (eligible in 2013) for the most ever. Roaf also was voted to the 1990s All-Decade Team as a Saint and 2000s All-Decade second team as a Chief.

“He was the best,” said former Tampa Bay defensive tackle Warren Sapp. “You can put Willie right up there with an Anthony Munoz or whoever else you want to talk about playing that position. He just blocked the sun.”

Roaf was the eighth player taken in the NFL draft after playing at Louisiana Tech, and after spending his rookie year at right tackle with New Orleans, he switched to the left side in his second season when he made the first of his club-record seven Pro Bowls. He was part of a team that won the first playoff game in Saints’ history in 2000 when New Orleans beat the defending Super Bowl-champion St. Louis Rams.

As a member of a vaunted offensive line that included perennial Pro Bowl right guard Will Shields, who will be eligible for the Hall of Fame in 2012, Roaf helped the Chiefs lead the NFL in scoring with a franchise-record 484 points in 2003 and lead the league in scoring again in 2004 with 467 points and a club-record 6,000 yards.

“My coming there, and moving John Tait to right tackle, our offensive line was pretty special for those several years,” said Roaf, who now lives in southern California and has done some coaching at the junior-college level. “That line was as good as it got, because we could all pull as one. John didn’t run as the other four of us, but when you see four of the five guys made the Pro Bowl, that tells you how good we were.”

Indeed, it was a sight to behold when the towering, 6-foot-5, 320-pound Roaf — after hobbling in the locker room all week — led Priest Holmes on a sweep or put up a human curtain of pass protection for quarterback Trent Green, who never missed a game during Roaf’s four seasons in Kansas City.

“When you saw Willie walking into the stadium, you would never have thought he was one of the best tackles ever to play the game,” said Chiefs guard Brian Waters, who played next to Roaf. “Once he got on the field and you saw his athletic ability, you saw his explosiveness in both the run and the pass game. … And he always stepped up big against the best talent. Always.”

The only negative to Roaf’s candidacy was in 13 years, he played in just three playoff games — two with the Saints and one with the Chiefs in 2003, a 38-31 loss to Indianapolis in which he held Dwight Freeney without a sack.

“Not being able to play a lot in the postseason and winning …” Roaf said. “Look at Tony Gonzalez. … It’s hard to make it that far, and it’s hard to win those games.”

Hall of Fame finalists

At least four and a maximum of seven nominees can be elected. If six or seven make it, two must be senior nominees.


Jerome Bettis*
Tim Brown
Cris Carter
Dermontti Dawson
Richard Dent
Chris Doleman
Marshall Faulk*
Charles Haley
Chris Hanburger**
Cortez Kennedy
Curtis Martin*
Andre Reed
Willie Roaf*
Les Richter**
Ed Sabol
Deion Sanders*
Shannon Sharpe
* First-year eligibles
** Senior candidates

royr17
02-05-2011, 02:43 AM
Willie Roaf was one of my favorite chiefs, he was a great pickup and did a tremendous job blocking for trent and priest. I hope that he does get elected in on first try, cause he truly does deserve that.

Chiefs=Good
02-05-2011, 03:00 AM
Never has a player skewed a fan group's opinion of a position more. Wille was just amazing to watch.

michaelj_58
02-05-2011, 03:17 AM
willie will make it in,he was the best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dave Lane
02-05-2011, 06:00 AM
Willie's ability to slide off of one block and pickup the next was like watching Baryshnikov.

FAX
02-05-2011, 08:53 AM
Never has a player skewed a fan group's opinion of a position more. Wille was just amazing to watch.

I think it's a fair argument that Willie was the best to play the game at that position in the kind of system that Saunders and Uncle Dick ran. The sweeps, screens, and stretches were money for that offense.

FAX

Hoover
02-05-2011, 09:24 AM
And most here were pissed when we traded for a banged up washed up gimp LT.

suzzer99
02-05-2011, 12:15 PM
Wish Willie would have given us enough love to play one more season when we still had Priest, Trent, Tony, Will, Waters and everyone else clicking on all cylinders.

Halfcan
02-05-2011, 02:29 PM
I dont want Sanders or Sharpe to make it.

Over-Head
02-05-2011, 02:36 PM
I dont want Sanders or Sharpe to make it.
There up the FOX sports `power`s that be azzes`too far NOT to make it

bowener
02-05-2011, 02:42 PM
Thank god he never became a bronco.

DTLB58
02-05-2011, 02:49 PM
Maybe one of the top 5 most deserving in the HOF that never won a SB.

DTLB58
02-05-2011, 02:50 PM
Thank god he never became a bronco.

JUst what I was thinking. Damnit Carl, Oh wait, Good Job Carl. :D

soopamanluva
02-05-2011, 04:16 PM
Really hope he makes it in

Chiefs Rool
02-05-2011, 04:18 PM
arguably the best LT to ever play, he better make it in first ballot.

Chiefs=Good
02-05-2011, 11:54 PM
I think it's a fair argument that Willie was the best to play the game at that position in the kind of system that Saunders and Uncle Dick ran. The sweeps, screens, and stretches were money for that offense.

FAX

Indeed. There was nothing like watching those little legs move that huge upper body at mind boggling speed in space. Such was the athleticism of the Big Willie.

mlyonsd
02-06-2011, 03:24 PM
Total BS Roaf didn't make the Hall today.

mlyonsd
02-06-2011, 03:32 PM
Didn't see a thread so the inductees this year are:

Sanders
Faulk
Sharpe :Lin:
Dent
Sabol
Richter
Hanburger