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Jones whiffs on Drew Pearson opportunity

2/2/2011

Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame quarterback Roger Staubach seemed convinced Monday that Jerry Jones would soon include wide receiver Drew Pearson in the club's Ring of Honor. But the Cowboys owner poured cold water on that theory during his 43-minute Super Bowl news conference Tuesday.

"We have yet to address that," said Jones. "There is no decision there at all. Obviously, it’s always been a question of your Hall of Fame players that deserve a lot of consideration there.

"But there has been no plan, and right now there is no plan to have an inductee into the Ring of Honor this next season. There’s no plan."

First of all, there's not one single (good) reason for Pearson's exclusion from the Ring of Honor. He was Staubach's most reliable target on those great teams from the 1970s. And it's lame for Jones to indicate that you need "Hall of Fame" credentials to be considered for the Ring of Honor. When he inducted offensive tackle Rayfield Wright into the Ring in 2004, it probably helped his Pro Football Hall of Fame candidacy.

I think Deion Sanders is a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but there's no way in the world he belongs in the Ring of Honor before Pearson -- if at all. Sanders helped the Cowboys win another Super Bowl in the 90s. He was a brilliant player, but he was only with the organization for five seasons.

Pearson hasn't been shy about criticizing Jones in the past, but the Cowboys owner has thick skin. It's hard for me to believe he couldn't get past some of that stuff.

Jones takes great pride in honoring the late Tex Schamm's idea of making the Ring of Honor incredibly exclusive. Schramm had about five years after Pearson's retirement when he could have inducted him. That would've been the best-case scenario. But now that Jones has been in charge for more than two decades, it's time to end this nonsense.

Jones-era players such as Charles Haley, Larry Allen and Darren Woodson all deserve strong consideration for the Ring of Honor. But no one should get in until Pearson is taken care of. Lynn Swann didn't even have a 900-yard season in his career, and he's sitting in the Hall of Fame. John Stallworth, also a member of the Hall of Fame, played 14 seasons to Pearson's 11, but his numbers aren't much better. I understand that Swann and Stallworth have more Super Bowl rings, but let's not act like they were any more important to the Steelers than Pearson was to Tom Landry's Cowboys.

I'm planning to visit with Pearson this afternoon, so I'll see if he wants to comment on the situation. Do you guys have an opinion on the matter?