Monday, March 1, 2010
Pace: Five years from Hall consideration?
By Mike Sando
Orlando Pace was once a great offensive tackle for the Rams. He'll deserve consideration for the Pro Football Hall of Fame when eligible.
Five years from now sounds about right.
Pace was not a great player for the Bears last season. They released him Tuesday after a season that confirmed Pace's decline as more than a temporary condition. Pace, 34, struggled. If he does decide to keep playing, it's unclear whether he could find a starting job.
That is difficult to fathom given how dominant Pace was in his prime. Age and injuries caught up to him.
Walter Jones and Jonathan Ogden were the elite offensive tackles of the last 15 years. Pace, at his best, was right up there with them. Injuries prevented him from staying as good for as long. Pace still managed to earn seven consecutive Pro Bowl appearances ending with the 2005 season. Only four offensive linemen -- Jones, Ogden, Will Shields and Alan Faneca -- have had more Pro Bowl appearances since the 1999 season.