NFL disrespects Buccaneers with Hall of Fame announcement

Ronde Barber, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Craig Jones /Allsport
Ronde Barber, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Craig Jones /Allsport /

Ronde Barber and the Buccaneers deserve far better on the recognition front.

Ronde Barber did not make it into the Hall of Fame again. The Buccaneers legend takes these lapses in judgement well, but we certainly don’t have to.

Barber deserves to be in as much as anyone else. In fact, he deserves to be in more than some of those who have passed him, and every year this mistake becomes more egregious.

The utility Barber brought the Buccaneers is unmatched. A DB that can drop into coverage, rush the passer, and tackle in space is not a commonplace in the modern NFL, and there aren’t going to be many more like Barber down the road either.

From stats to accomplishments on the Bucs, Barber should be in; it’s just a matter of when.

Now, there are a lot of worthy names, and we saw five guys last night that all deserved to make it in. There are always going to be great players that miss the cut, but that wasn’t the biggest loss for the Bucs last night.

Snubs happen. As Bucs fans we anticipate those. However, we can’t anticipate the way the NFL handled last night.

Derrick Brooks getting to announce a name should have been it. It’s poetry. Brooks announcing Barber is a better story than what you can find in a book. Two guys that that meant so much to the franchise getting to be the focal points of this moment was a perfect ending to this arduous journey.

Except it wasn’t.

Instead of saying Ronde’s name, Brooks announced Cliff Branch (never played a snap in Tampa). Branch absolutely deserves to be in, but one has to wonder why the NFL chose Brooks to announce his name where they are tons of other players with better reasons to be tied to that moment.

Seeing Brooks felt like an answer to a pray nearly a decade in the making, but the twist made accepting the truth that much harder.

Picking Brooks when the world knows Barber is on the cusp of making it into the Hall is a terrible move by the NFL, bordering on inconsiderate.

We don’t want to hear that Ronde Barber’s time is coming. We want it to be now. It almost feels like the criteria is changing on a yearly basis, and Bucs fans are rightfully upset.

Tom Brady’s gone, and it looks like the NFL is back to disrespecting the Buccaneers. What’s new?

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