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Martin Turns Sights to Next Year’s Hall Class

Posted by Nick Gallo on February 9, 2011 – 12:26 pm

While media members were anxiously filing into the Houston Ballroom at the Sheraton Dallas on Saturday night for NFL Network’s live broadcast of the 2011 Pro Football Hall of Fame selections, Curtis Martin, back north, was making his way to the gym.

“Saturday was pretty relaxing,” Martin told Eric Allen of newyorkjets.com when he visited the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center this week. “It’s funny. I don’t get the NFL channel on the cable that I have, so I had to go down to the gym, the weightroom actually, to watch it on their television.”

The Jets’ No. 28 made the final 10 in the voting by the 44-member Hall of Fame selection committee but was not chosen to be one of the seven enshrined in Canton in July, but Martin is the fourth-leading rusher in NFL history and believes he has an opportunity to make the Hall in 2012.

“I think I have a good chance but it is tough competition every single year,” Martin said. “It’s definitely the people who are the elite to ever even play the game. This year, I said to the press earlier that I thought that the voters made a good decision on the class that they chose. Marshall [Faulk], Deion [Sanders], Richard Dent, all of them, they deserve to be there, so it was just an honor to be in the top 10 finalists.”

Perhaps the three most qualified new candidates for the Hall next year are former Jets coach Bill Parcells, former Chiefs guard Will Shields and ex-Giants RB Tiki Barber. Other candidates that just missed the cut this year include RB Jerome Bettis and a trio of top wide receivers — Tim Brown, Cris Carter and Andre Reed.

Martin gushed about Parcells, who Martin said would have introduced him at the enshrinement ceremony if he had made the Hall this year.

“Bill Parcells means a lot to me,” Martin said. “I think that my career wouldn’t have been half of what it was if it wasn’t for him. He taught me the ropes. He taught me the mentality to have. He taught me how to be a professional and he also gave me some good tips on just being a human being and a man.”

Martin finished his career with 14,101 yards and 70 touchdowns and also caught passes for 3,329 yards and 10 touchdowns. The Pittsburgh native still shares the NFL record with 1,000 rushing yards in each of the first 10 seasons of his career. Parcells was his head coach for his first two seasons with the Patriots, then in seasons 4-6 with the Jets.

“I look up to him,” Martin said. “He’s one of the first male role models in my life that I had that type of respect for, almost like a father-like respect, and it’s been the same from the day I started playing for the Patriots until today. We still have that close relationship.”

As a result, the two have the chance to enter the Hall in the same class next season. Parcells has become a legend in the coaching circuit, and Martin will be known as one of the most consistent and mentally tough players in Jets and NFL history.

“If Parcells and I hypothetically were to get in there together,” Martin said, “I would be glad that I didn’t make it this year.”

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Posted in Nick Gallo | 8 Comments »

8 Responses to “Martin Turns Sights to Next Year’s Hall Class”

  1. By wayne on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    Typical Curtis Martin. Not whining about what might have or should have been. Or talking about what he deserves. But being appreciative of his blessings, to even be considered worthy….Always walking the walk and talking the talk. Not just when it benefits him…..A true Christian man.

  2. By Mike Jet Vet on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    What class… and I quote a man amoung men ..if Parcells and I hypothetically were to get in together I would be glad I didn’t make it this year..any questions (Revis) and all Greed mongers out there …They should take their lead from this humble Man who appreciates the chance he was given not in spite of it ..You wore the Green and white with pride and dignity

  3. By KevinFan67 on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    What a total travesty the Hall is always making of who decides to get in. Martin, as pointed out in the article…one of only 2 players to rush for 1000 yards or more for first 10 years…4th overall rushing leaders…Oldest player to win a rushing title….his stats overwhelms Marshal Faulk…give me a break. I guess a Super Bowl ring gives Faulk a break. Chris Hanburger….where did thjis come from…so where is Joe Klecko….not even mentioned…a bigger travesty….someone who was all-pro at 3…yes three different defensive line positions…sack leader. HOF plays nothing but fav’s…and the cry babies like Dent and Sharpe.

  4. By GaryC on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    this is just a thought to all people who believe certain players get the shaft when it comes to the HOF.how many old afl players are never mentioned when it comes to the hall of fame, and I discount the steelers, browns,colts, they are old guard nfl.there are many chargers,oilers,bills,broncos,jets,patriots and so on of the old AFL who should get consideration but they are old afl and that is why their is no consideration.

  5. By Mike Jet Vet on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    KevinFan67 amen brother to shun a player like Klecko I’ve said it over and over.. show us Jets fans who this commitee is defiling along with these 2 great men and fine examples of this game of football any other D-linemen going to the Pro Bowl at 3 positions and not because of injury he was that good ..I can only imagine the reason they didn’t bring enough attention to themselves or forgot to get negitive headlines in the paper or a reality show about idiotic nonsence…Just another black eye for the good guys

  6. By Mike Jet Vet on Feb 9, 2011 | Reply

    I want so much to start a movement to oust Roger Goodell from his position..But its a losing battle for most the population are students of the time sorry to say…How I long for the good old days compared to these ..foxholes rockets red glaring sound of bullets wizing by my head many sleepless nights wondering when and if I.d ever make it home..I was a snot nose kid for sure, I am truly blessed

  7. By KevinFan67 on Feb 10, 2011 | Reply

    You are so right GaryC on how the old AFL players are barely looked upon for any recognition for Hall of Fame. One that sticks out in my mind as one of the better Offensive Tackles of all time is Winston Hill. Many of the “old school” AFL teams recognize there players at their team stadiums with their own wall of fame or ring of honor. I am glad the Jets started this at our stadium and I hope they do remember some of the old timers that meant a lot to the team and the old AFL. Just irks me on how there are certain standards. How stats suppose to be a big part means nothing with Martin vs. Faulk…which favors Martin tremendously….and even Bettis had better stats than Faulk…and has a ring. whatever…argue this till we all turn blu

  8. By GaryC on Feb 10, 2011 | Reply

    kevinfan67,you read my mind when you bring up winston hill, I always think about him for consideration, also guys like tombstone jackson of broncos,paul lowe of chargers, alvin reed of oilers,Is ed budde of the chiefs there or Jim tyrer of chiefs.cookie gilchrist, jim nance,just some others.

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