Troy Polamalu has announced that he’s retiring after a mostly spectacular 12-year career with the Pittsburgh
During his career he racked up eight Pro Bowls and four first-team All Pro awards, one behind Ravens safety Ed Reed in both categories. Polamalu also was a second-team All Decade safety on the team of the 2000s. Reed and Brian Dawkins won first-team and Polamalu shared his honors with Darren Sharper.
So Polamalu’s credentials as a Hall of Famer should be without question, right?
Probably so. He’s a year behind Reed in eligibility, so I would normally think he’s a year behind Reed in induction – though Reed could go in slightly more quickly due to the additional honors. Still, Polamalu’s credentials are solid. He becomes eligible in 2020 and one would think he’d have a pretty good shot of making it then or, at least, shortly thereafter.
However, it’s been very difficult in recent years to figure out how voters view the safety position. There are several top-notch candidates from the last three All-Decade teams – among others – who have still not been voted into the Hall – guys with similar postseason profiles to Polamalu and Reed. So how long they wait really depends on how voters decide to sort out the backlog.
Here’s at least a partial list of guys who seem to be viewed as legit candidates: [Read more…]