There’s always next year.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame snubbed former New York Jets and New England Patriots running back Curtis Martin on Saturday in his first year inductee eligibility.
Martin’s name was trending on Twitter immediately following the announcement on Saturday that listed the seven inductees for the 2011 class.
“Maybe next year,” Martin himself tweeted. “I truly believe those guys who made it deserve it. I enjoyed the process!”
Although humble, Martin was still one of the 10 final candidates for induction. His former coach, Bill Parcells, was one of his biggest fans lobbying for him publicly by calling him the “Boy Wonder” and saying that Martin’s credentials are “indisputable”.
Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders and Walter Payton are the only three players to produce more than Martin’s 14,101 yards in the 11 seasons he played. Martin and Sanders are also the only two backs to have ever rushed for at least 1,000 yards in each of their first 10 seasons.
The letdown that comes with not being named was something that Martin was bracing for earlier in the week.
“I’m totally prepared for that,” he told ESPN.com in the week leading up to the announcement. “I’m the type of guy that takes things as they come. For me, it’s been an honor. I don’t say this modestly or anything, but it’s been such an honor for me to accomplish what I accomplished in the NFL. Nothing will take that away from me or that joy of being able to play the years I have and accomplish what I have. Nothing will take that away.”