There are nine middle linebackers currently enshrined in the Pro Football
Hall of Fame and, not surprisingly, five of them earned that singular honor
while performing in the old NFC Central division.
The division, which will become known as the NFC North this year in the
realigned NFL, has been a test of manhood for throwback defenders more
bloodied than bowed. And the roster of great middle linebackers - Dick
Butkus, Ray Nitschke, Joe Schmidt, Ed George, Mike Singletary - makes for an