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Friday, April 20, 2018

Shannon Sharpe Campaigned for Brother Sterling’s Hall of Fame Candidacy

Shannon Sharpe delivered a powerful speech during his Hall of Fame induction ceremony Saturday in Canton. Sharpe talked about growing up poor and how it motivated him to work as hard as possible. He gave thanks to his grandmother for helping to raise him properly. He also spent part of his speech committing a selfless act. Shannon campaigned for his brother Sterling’s Hall of Fame candidacy.

“My big brother Sterling. I’m the only player of 267 men that’s walked through this building to my left, that can honestly say this: I’m the only pro football player in the Hall of Fame, and I’m the second best player in my own family,” Shannon said, moving his brother to tears. “If fate had dealt you a different hand, there is absolutely no question in my mind we would have been the first brothers to be elected to the Hall of Fame.

“The 44 men and women that I thanked and congratulated earlier for giving me and bestowing this prestigious honor upon me, all I do is ask all, I can do is ask … that next time you go into that room or you start making a list, look at Sterling Sharpe’s accomplishments for a seven-year period. Of the guys that’s in the Hall of Fame at the receiver position, and the guys that have the potential to be in this building … that’s all I ask. The next time you go in that room, you think about Sterling Sharpe’s numbers for seven years. That’s all I ask.”

It was truly a beautiful moment in Canton. Football fans who watched as Sterling presented Shannon for the Hall couldn’t help but think that the former receiver also deserved a spot.

In his seven seasons with the Packers, Sterling made the Pro Bowl five times and was All-Pro three seasons. He never missed a game until he had to retire after the 1994 season because of a neck injury. Sterling led the league in receptions three times (including a career high 112 in ’93), he led the league in touchdowns twice (career high 18 in ’94), and yardage in ’92 (1,461).

I didn’t need Shannon’s speech to recognize that Sterling Sharpe is Hall of Fame worthy. Hopefully his speech brought more attention to the voters and will help get his brother elected eventually.

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