You can guess which Patriot was on the list. Here it is:
3. Tom Brady, QB, Patriots: It’s not about stats for Brady, although a single-season record of 50 touchdown passes in 2007 was quite impressive. The only number that matters: Three. As in three Super Bowl championships (twice MVP) says it all.
Joining Brady in the “Canton Bound” are Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, Ray Lewis, Tony Gonzalez, LaDainian Tomlinson and Ed Reed.
Only one other Patriot made any of Kirwan’s other categories (“Close but not confirmed”, “At this pace, they have a shot”, “May come up short” and “Too early to tell, but signs look good”). That was Randy Moss, who topped the “close” list. Kirwan wrote …
In 12 seasons, Moss has 926 receptions at 15.6 yards per catch with 148 touchdown catches, second only to Jerry Rice (197). Since joining the Patriots in 2007 (when he caught a single-season record 23 touchdowns), Moss has been on fire and, with at least one more year with Brady (he becomes a free agent after next season), he projects to increase those numbers substantially in 2010.
I think Moss is a “lock”, because he, Terrell Owens and Marvin Harrison, in my mind, are the defining receivers of the Aughts. But as voter Peter King has mentioned, that position’s going to be a tough one for the committee.
What’s just as tough is guessing how many players from the championship Patriot teams of that decade will get in. Brady’s probably the only lock (Bill Belichick will get in too, as a coach), and after him, it really is hard to say who else makes it. Richard Seymour? Ty Law? What do you guys think?