Good question. He had 60 receiving touchdowns, a record that stood for 27 years until Shannon Sharpe broke it in 2004. According to Fox Sports, Smith also had 421 catches for 5,496 yards – more receptions than three of the eight tight ends already in the Hall of Fame. He also has more receiving yards than three Hall of Famers at that position.
Could it be because he was gay? According to the Fox article, if it wasn’t due to direct discrimination, his sexual orientation still had an impact. After all, he played in era when homosexuality was much less accepted than it is now, and lived in constant fear of being discovered. As a result, he assiduously shied away from publicity, and perhaps was not on the minds of many of those on the Selection Committee. I’m not sure I buy that, but the amount of publicity a great player receives should not matter. His stats speak for themselves.
Click here to watch a trailer for NFL Network’s A Football Life – Jerry Smith. Be warned – it is sad. If a three-minute trailer is tear-jerking, just imagine watching it for an hour.
It’s been a while since I have written, which is unfortunate, because there has been a lot of jiucy stuff to blog about. I’ll try to give you the condensed version.
1. 2012 Redskin-Seahawk Wildcard Playoff Game: That was on you, Mike Shanahan. As a 60+ year old Super Bowl winning coach, you don’t take direction from a 23-year-old. I don’t care who the 23-year-old is.
2. I wasn’t sure if Mike should have been fired until the last 3 games of the season. He’s not a terrible coach, but at 3-13, something has to give. Although Jay Gruden only has 3 years of NFL coaching experience, he has significantly upgraded the Bengals’ offense. According to Bleacher Report, quoting Pro Football Focus, Bengals’ QB Andy Dalton was the second-least pressured quarterback in the league, behind Peyton Manning. If Gruden can keep that up in DC, it will come as a welcome change. In addition, don’t let the “3 years” fool you. He has been coaching on a professional level for 17 years. Yes, the Arena League counts as professional football.
3. Redskins Name Change: Nothing is going to happen unless Daniel Snyder gives the go-ahead. That’s not going to happen anytime soon, if ever. If, on the off-chance it does happen at some point, here’s a simple suggestion. Change the name to the Washington Braves and keep the logo. The Washington Redskins were originally the Boston Braves, so the Braves name is in keeping with the team’s tradition, but not nearly as offensive to Native Americans as the name Redskins.
I haven’t followed pro basketball in a long, long time. Why? Because just like my favorite football team, my favorite basketball team – the Philadelphia 76ers – have been horrible for a long, long time. That changed this year, when they made it to the second round of the playoffs, eventually losing to Boston at the Garden. Does this mean that there is hope for my Redskins?
Anyway, it doesn’t matter that the Sixers lost, I’m still proud of them. Truth is, whoever ended up winning that series is going to lose to Miami. Would I have liked to see the Sixers beat Boston on Boston’s home turf? Hell yeah! The Sixers-Celtics rivalry has gone on almost as long as the Redskins-Cowboys, and I remember suffering through many losses to the Celtics in the 70s and 80s (I stopped paying attention in the 90s and 2000s).
And, when I say I was raised a Sixer fan – this pic proves it!
If you Google the phrase “my pathetic Redskins,” the first two entries that come up are from Alan Randall Steinberg’s blog. And I am DEFINITELY not the only one saying it!
They are definitely pathetic, but they’re my team. This past season, I spent the money to get the DirectTV Sunday Ticket so I could watch the ‘Skins play, because I actually thought they would be decent. Little did I know that they would lose most of their games, and in the games they did win, they made me suffer to the bitter end.
Which brings us to this week. I have hope once again, as they traded for the #2 draft pick, virtually guaranteeing that they will get Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III. And they have been making moves to beef up the receiving corps around him.
But what they giveth with one hand, they taketh away with the other. The NFL has penalized the Redskins a whopping $36 million against their salary cap for shenanigans they pulled in 2010, when there was no cap. This has obviously made it more difficult to get the good receivers they need, as the Redskins have already lost top free agent prospect Vincent Jackson to Tampa Bay and are still negotiating with Bronco Eddie Royal, even though recent reports said he had already signed with the Redskins.
A friend of mine recently said, “every year you say they are going to be good. It’s never going to happen.” But they were good for a long time – a long time ago (check out this link from the Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/redskins-1991-16-games-14-wins/2012/01/25/gIQAQIPJRQ_story.html). So maybe they can be good again, and prove my friend wrong.