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January 29, 2010

Canton vs. Cooperstown Part 2

"I'm excited about what lies in front of me....and seeing what God's going to do next."

In what was a surprise to no one...former grocery store bagger and two-time MVP quarterback Kurt Warner announced his retirement from the NFL this afternoon.

Now, if you hit up Google and bang out "Kurt Warner Hall of Fame" you're going to get hundreds of thousands of responses. I mean, EVERYONE seems to think that this cat deserves a bust in Canton.

Are the credentials for enshrinement in Canton THAT much different than unlocking the doors at Cooperstown?

Apparently so.

Last season at this time, during the NFC Championship game, the commentators were all talking about the matchup between Warner and Donovan McNabb.

At some point, it became less about who was going to the Super Bowl and more about the legacy of each quarterback. Every time I heard that this particular game would determine who would end up taking up residency in the Pro Football Hall of Fame…I threw up a little in my mouth.

A fourth NFC Championship loss would spell doom for widely underappreciated McNabb, while a third Super Bowl appearance would, apparently, make Warner a lock.

If you listened to the announcers, each touchdown pass to Larry Fitzgerald was another step toward immortality for the former Hy-Vee bag boy.

In the second half, all that was pushed aside thanks to McNabb’s comeback. All of a sudden, he was likened to John Elway or Joe Montana.

Unless you were under a rock, you know that the game concluded with the Arizona Cardinals winning 32 to 25 and seemingly sent Warner to the tailor to get measured for his Hall of Fame jacket.

A week later, and following a spectacular comeback by Warner and his Arizona Cardinals, the Pittsburgh Steelers snuffed out Warner's chance at winning his second Super Bowl ring with a last-minute touchdown.

Can someone please tell me why we're talking about this guy as a Hall of Famer.

Last season, Warner wasn’t even slated to start the season under center...Matt Leinert was. This year, the tides were turned and Warner was a lock for the season opener.

His 2009 season was pretty good. Not All-Pro good...but pretty good nonetheless.

Overall, he has played four…count ‘em four FULL seasons as a starting quarterback. Sure, he made the Super Bowl in three of those seasons and his career winning percentage hovers around 57%, but in baseball terms…the guy is, and yes, I realize this is a stretch, more Jose Rijo (career winning percentage of 56% and a World Series MVP) than Curt Schilling (accolades too numerous to mention).

So what in the world does Kurt Warner have to do with baseball? There hasn’t been a “Warner” in baseball since 1966 and the closest any of them haven’t gotten to the Hall of Fame were the “Waner” brothers (Paul and Lloyd) of the 30s and 40s.

Consider this if you will.

Football is a game of “what have you done for me once” while baseball fans want to know exactly “what are you doing for me now”…just look at the history of the game.

Joe Namath, with his one ring and .500 record, has earned him some sort of legendary status. David Cone, with his FIVE rings, a perfect game and close to 200 Ws couldn't get four percent of the writers to vote for him last year.

BallHype: hype it up!

1 comment:

Johnny P said...

Thanks for the Rijo plug!