Friday, July 25, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Who's the next Eagle in the Hall of Fame?

Prior to the Andy Reid era, the Eagles historically didn't have much success, as anyone who has searched for the team's Vince Lombardi trophy collection would know. This weekend's Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies are simply another reminder.

Who's the next Eagle in the Hall of Fame?

Brian Dawkins and Donovan McNabb are two Andy Reid-era players who have a shot at making the Hall of Fame. (Bill Kostroun/AP file photo)
Brian Dawkins and Donovan McNabb are two Andy Reid-era players who have a shot at making the Hall of Fame. (Bill Kostroun/AP file photo)

Prior to the Andy Reid era, the Eagles historically didn't have much success, as anyone who has searched for the team's Vince Lombardi trophy collection would know. This weekend's Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies are simply another reminder.

The Eagles have the fewest primary contributing players of any NFC East team and fewer than every NFL team in existence prior to the American Football League (AFL) in 1960. And even some of the newer teams have zipped past the Eagles' list of seven.

The Eagles fall behind Washington (16), New York (15), and Dallas (11), though the team has seen three primary inductees since 1998: Tommy McDonald, Bob Brown, and Reggie White. Chuck Bednarik, Sonny Jurgensen, Pete Pihos and Steve Van Buren are the other Eagle Hall of Famers.

Here are the questions: who's next, and will any of White's contemporaries join him in the Hall? Only "primary contributors" count in the tally, so previous finalists such as Cris Carter (Minnesota) and Claude Humphrey (Atlanta) don't add to the total.

A sure bet is Brian Dawkins, a nine-time Pro Bowl safety and six-time All Pro who retired after 16 seasons and will be eligible for election in 2017.

Will someone else get there first? Eric Allen and Randall Cunningham have both been eligible since 2007, but haven't advanced far enough in the process. Allen was a six-time Pro Bowl pick who finished with 54 career interceptions. Cunningham was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and the NFL MVP in 1990.

And then there's Donovan McNabb. The Hall candidacy of the six-time Pro Bowl pick and NFC Player of the Year in 2004 could keep talk radio talking for weeks on end. Most would consider him the Eagles' all-time best quarterback, but does that make him Hall-worthy?

The Eagle who truly got left out is one for the old-timers: Al Wistert. An 8-time All Pro and captain of the Eagles title teams in '48 and '49, he was named to the NFL 1940s All-Decade Team and is in the College Football Hall of Fame. It would take a Seniors Committee nomination at this point.

Another guy who stands an excellent chance: Reid himself. But since he's not a player, his addition wouldn't help the team's total here.

What are your thoughts?

About this blog
For news, stats, video, live chats and more, Red Zone is the place to find Eagles coverage you can't get anywhere else. Reach Jimmy at jkempski@philly.com.

Jimmy Kempski Philly.com
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