Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Ray Guy may finally get HOF call
By Bill Williamson
We may be on the cusp of football history.
A punter may be on his way to election into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
On Wednesday, it was announced that former Oakland punter Ray Guy is one of two senior committee nominees, along with Claude Humphrey. Usually, the two senior committee nominees are elected. The next election will be in February.
It would a watershed moment if Guy -- widely considered the best punter ever to live -- gets elected. There has never been a punter-only player elected into the Hall of Fame.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Guy gets some opposition in the voting process. There is a faction of voters who don’t believe punters should be in the hall of fame. Still, that fact that Guy made it this far is a good sign.
I have never gotten the argument that punters don’t belong in the Hall of Fame. Here’s my point: Try playing the game without punters. Thus, the greatest punter of all time deserves recognition.
Guy, Oakland’s first-round draft pick in 1973, recently expressed his angst over not being enshrined. Guy was a vital part of the 1970s hey-day Raiders. He was a supreme weapon. Guy, 62, averaged 42.4 yards per punt over his 14-year career.
Guy is an inspiration to most punters, and his election would give hope to all future punters. It would clearly please new Oakland punter Chris Kluwe. He was fined by the NFL last year while with Minnesota when he campaigned for Guy to make the Canton, Ohio, museum with a message on his uniform.
Perhaps the message has finally been heard.