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Does Rodney Harrison belong in Canton?

10/21/2008

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Rodney Harrison's season appears to be over. His career probably is, too.

Many have felt the New England Patriots strong safety, who turns 36 on Dec. 15, had lost a step before he suffered a torn right quadriceps in Monday night's victory over the Denver Broncos in Gillette Stadium.

Harrison's contract is up after this season.

So there might not be a decision to make in that regard.

But there will be a decision to consider in 2014. That would be the first year Harrison is eligible for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Harrison has been controversial topic throughout his 15-year career with Patriots and San Diego Chargers. He is one of the most vicious players in NFL history but also has a reputation as one of its most wayward. If fines and suspensions were a fantasy statistic, Harrison might be the No. 1 pick.

An ESPN.com poll of NFL coaches earlier this year re-confirmed Harrison's status as the league's dirtiest player heading into this season.

And safeties are hard to get elected.

But Harrison has credentials that could be considered for Canton.

Harrison was a defensive captain for two Super Bowl winners. He has been named to two Pro Bowls -- that will be a problem in convincing Hall-of-Fame voters -- and selected All-Pro twice. The Chargers' selected him their defensive player of the year four times.

He is the only player in NFL history with at least 30 sacks and 30 interceptions. His 30.5 sacks are the most among safeties. With the Chargers in 1997 he became the first player to score touchdowns on a kick return, interception return and fumble return.

His seven career postseason interceptions are the third-most since the AFL-NFL merger. He made four in the 2004 playoffs.

So what do you think? Does Harrison belong in the Hall of Fame?