By John Turney
With the Terrell Owens not getting in the Hall of Fame hoopla, what got somewhat underreported is the significance of Jason Taylor being elected to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot. He became the fifth defensive end to be so honored. The other four? Gino Marchetti, Deacon Jones, Reggie White, and Bruce Smith. White was a 10-time First-team All-Pro, Smith and Marchetti nine time, and Jones a six-time First-team All-Pro.
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Also, we have sack numbers for those players with blanks in that column, however, they are not complete, again, data in the 1950s is very hard to come by. However, we feel very confident that Marchetti is around 110, Ford is in the close to 100, Willie Davis is just under 100, and Robustelli is around 110 and Atkins at least 130. Some day, God willing, we will have complete numbers for those players.
Folks can debate if Taylor is worthy of that honor, after all, there have been some minorly questionable first-ballot selections in football and baseball and this is one of them. But having the names Gino, Deacon, Reggie, and Bruce listed with Jason Taylor just does not sound right. It connotes he was on their level. And he really wasn't.