NFL Nation: Tedy Brucshi
CANTON, Ohio -- The Buffalo Bills of the 1990s, those woebegone losers of four straight Super Bowls, are forming a squadron of Pro Football Hall of Famers.
|Ron Vesely/Getty Images|
|Jim Kelly and Thurman Thomas are two of five Bills from the 1990s who are Hall of Famers.|
Defensive end Bruce Smith will be inducted Saturday night, giving those Super Bowl teams five representatives so far. Previously minted were quarterback Jim Kelly, running back Thurman Thomas, receiver James Lofton and head coach Marv Levy.
Wide receiver Andre Reed likely will join them (after a long wait). With enough support, special-teams stalwart Steve Tasker eventually could get in, too.
"It really shows you that people understand what we did, what we accomplished," Kelly said Friday at the McKinley Hotel. "What we accomplished is amazing."
Compare that haul with other clubs that won multiple Super Bowls. The Pittsburgh Steelers won four in the 1970s and have sent 10, and some critics say that's too many.
Rodney Harrison's candidacy will be debated. He was a great player, but only six-full time safeties ever have made it into Canton. Maybe Corey Dillon, Richard Seymour or Ty Law has an outside shot. Adam Vinatieri's heroics might not be enough. Only one kicker, Jan Stenerud, has been inducted.
No matter how much Patriot Nation loves Tedy Bruschi, he's not getting in.
"There's so much emphasis on winning Super Bowls, but it's what it takes to get there, too," Kelly said. "Sure, it's easy for me to say that because I didn't win one, but we didn't take the easy road. We took the long road many times, including the Comeback Game when Frank [Reich] was quarterback.
"There's no doubt more people are admiring what we accomplished during those days. They start really saying 'Wow' that we were able to get back there, especially since we lost. It would have been easy for us to not quite work as hard next time, to say 'Maybe it wasn't meant to be' after the second year and then the third year and then being able to do it four years in a row. Sometimes it amazes myself that we were able to keep together and pull together.
"For us, just getting over that one hump ... People talk about the dynasty of the Patriots," Kelly said. "Remember, they won two Super Bowls by a last-second kick. If we had one go through, who knows what would have happened?"
12:54 3rd Qtr Cincinnati 10 Pittsburgh 20 Final Cleveland 10 Baltimore 20 Final Dallas 44 Washington 17 Final Indianapolis 27 Tennessee 10 Final Jacksonville 17 Houston 23 Final San Diego 7 Kansas City 19 Final New York 37 Miami 24 Final Chicago 9 Minnesota 13 Final Buffalo 17 New England 9 Final Philadelphia 34 New York 26 Final New Orleans 23 Tampa Bay 20 Final Carolina 34 Atlanta 3 Final Detroit 20 Green Bay 30 Final Oakland 14 Denver 47 Final Arizona 17 San Francisco 20 Final St. Louis 6 Seattle 20