Tony Boselli thanked many on his way to the Hall of Fame

Tony Boselli was the Jaguars’ first-ever draft selection and became the team’s first-ever Hall of Famer Saturday afternoon at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony in Canton, Ohio. 

Boselli, who was the second overall pick in the 1995 NFL Draft out of USC, became a five-time Pro Bowl selection (1996-2000), and a three-time All-Pro (1997-99),

During his seven seasons in the NFL, Boselli allowed only 15.5 sacks and was the first Jaguars player to be inducted into the team’s Pride of the Jaguars, and he was selected to the NFL’s All-Decade team of the 1990s.

On Saturday, Boselli, who was inducted with seven others, was introduced b7 former Jaguars QB Mark Brunell, and he thanked Brunell and many of his teammates in Jacksonville.

“I had amazing teammates,” Boselli said during his speech. “I was fortunate to play with so many great Jaguars like Fred Taylor, who made me look good all the time, and Jimmy Smith, who not too many people could cover. I hope one day both of them will have the chance to be in Canton. And I treasure the moments I shared with my brothers on the offensive line, especially Ben Coleman, who had my back at left guard, Leon Searcy, who set the standard on the right side, and one of my best friends, Jeff Novak, who by the way is the only guy I ever backed up in the NFL, but most of the time he was busy making jokes and making me laugh.”

He also thanked his former coach Tom Coughlin, the team’s and Boselli’s first coach.

“Again, there is nothing more precious than family. To my Jaguars family…it all starts with Tom Coughlin, who, by the way, belongs on this stage really soon because there’s not too many better coaches than him. Tom, you were a pain to play for at times, though,” he said. “You were hard, had high standards, a bunch of silly rules I never agreed with. You were difficult to play for, but I always respected you. You made us winners. I am more grateful for you, Coach, with each passing year, and Tom, you and your family, will always mean the world to Angi and I.”

Boselli also thanked his wife, Angi, who he met during his time at USC. 

“My career, indeed, had taken flight at USC,” he said. “Much more important; however, my life would take shape thanks to meeting Angi Aylor, my wife, best friend, counselor, supporter, and the world’s greatest mom for 27 plus years. I want to thank Angi’s parents, Ed and Nancy, and her siblings, Steve, Ami, and Jeff, for all the support and for not messing her up. Angi, you’ve been central to my life in the journey I’ve taken as a football player, husband, and father. You’ve been with me since the beginning, encouraging me to take and follow the right path. And to keep me on the right path, she actually married me. Angi was at my side when the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars selected me second overall in the 1995 NFL Draft. The greatest thing football has done for me is setting the stage for you, Angi, to be my wife. God gave me the opportunity to play the game I love, but outside of Jesus dying for me, you’re the greatest gift I’ve received. Thank you, and I love you!!’

He finally thanked the rest of his family, including his kids and his dad, the late Tony Boselli, Sr.

“Above all, I thank God for family,” he said. “Mom, Fred, Carla, Jennifer, Michael, Lauren, Liz, Uncle Bud, and Aunt Betty, and all my cousins, Angi, my five amazing kids, Andrew, Adam, Ashli, Lexi, Ansli, but there’s actually one more I want to talk about. I was born Don Bosco Anthony Boselli, Junior. The best part of my name, though, is Junior.

To my dad, Tony Boselli, Senior, whose brave fight with cancer was decided on May 31, 2021, and whose impact on my childhood and career can never be adequately expressed. Thank you, Dad. Thank you for everything. I am happy you are in the comfort of God. I know you are here, but man, I wish you were here with me. I miss you. I love you. And on this, one of the greatest days of my life, I honor your memory and thank you for the greatest gift of all, and that’s family.”

O.J. Anderson believes he belongs in the Hall of Fame

For 14 seasons, former NFL RB Ottis  “O.J” Anderson was a powerhouse.  He averaged over 1200 yards in his first six seasons in the NFL with the St. Louis Cardinals and would go on to win two Super Bowls with the New York Giants, which included being named MVP in Super Bowl 25.

The two-time Pro Bowler would retire in 1993. He finished his career with 10,273 rushing yards and 81 touchdowns on the ground. When Anderson stepped away from the game, he ranked seventh in rushing touchdowns and eighth in rushing yards.

Anderson had a great career and a career that should warrant serious consideration for the Hall of Fame. However, Anderson has been eligible for the Hall since 1999, and at this point, he will have to continue to wait a little longer. But if were up to Anderson, his number would be called

“Welp, if you look at stats, and that’s what they go by, there’s no doubt I should be. For whatever reason, they just don’t seem to not understand,” Anderson recently told Paul Gant about the Hall of Fame. “You know what, I ain’t play the game for the Hall of Fame; I played the game because I enjoyed it. I wanted to make a lot of fans happy. I think I accomplished those two things. If I get the third one, which is the Hall of Fame, I would be excited about it.

“I just hope I’m alive when they do it. I mean no offense to Terrell Davis, he just got in. He has way less yardage than me, but again, he is a very fine running back. I don’t know what criteria they’re judging it on, but if it’s on yardage, and other things tangible that goes with it, I think my resume looks pretty good.”

Anderson does have a strong case. As he said, he does have a lot more rushing yards than Davis(Anderson: 10273, Davis: 7607), and also, like Davis, Anderson has a Super Bowl MVP.

Unfortunately, for whatever reason, his career is not getting the respect it deserves. Hopefully, he can get in at some point, and hopefully, as the 62-year-old Anderson said, he will be alive to see it.

 

 

 

Champ Bailey thinks Broncos’ Harris could make the Hall of Fame(Video)

This past weekend, former Broncos corner Champ Bailey and seven others were inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Of the seven-person class that was inducted into the Hall, four of them were defensive backs(Bailey, Ed Reed, Ty Law, and Johnny Robinson), and according to Bailey, another Broncos’ DB could be joining him in Canton at some point, and that is Chris Harris Jr.

Entering his ninth season in the league, Harris, 30, is a four-time Pro Bowler, including All-Pro honors in 2016. Harris, who was an undrafted rookie free agent, helped the Broncos capture a Super Bowl title in the 2015 season. In 123 games, Harris has 19 interceptions, four which were returned for touchdowns, and in a two-year span(2013-2015), which included 35 games, Harris did not allow a touchdown reception.

“He came into the league as a free agent, and man, the moment I saw him practice, like, this dude was going to be special,” Bailey said on Sunday at the Enshrinees‘ Roundtable. “He was a dog! He did not care what anybody thought. Walk-through, no we’re running through this walk-through. He didn’t care. He was always intense, and even today, he’s still that same kid, hungry, acting like he has a chip on his shoulder.”

Listen below as Bailey talks why he believes Harris could be a Hall of Famer when his career is over: