Past greats elevated to legendary status.
Former New York Giants coach Bill Parcells and receiver Chris Carter were among seven people inducted into the American Football Hall of Fame on Saturday.
They were joined at enshrinement ceremonies by offensive linemen Larry Allen and Jonathan Ogden, defensive tackles Curley Culp and Warren Sapp, and linebacker Dave Robinson.
Carter, the only inductee without a Super Bowl title, struggled with off-field drug and alcohol issues by Philadelphia in 1989 and joined Minnesota.
“Minnesota fans didn’t judge me when a lot of bad things were being said about me,” Carter said. “They always cheered for Cris. The only thing I really wish is we could have won that championship for those people.”
Carter said the Eagles decision to drop him helped him break free of cocaine addiction and control alcohol use.
“That day, September 19, 1990, when I stopped drinking, that life choice I made on that day is the most significant thing to getting here,” Carter said. “I just started on that day trying not to have a drink for one week … and I still haven’t had that drink. And I could have ended doing so many different things than what I am right now.”
Parcells, best known for guiding the Giants to two Super Bowl titles, also coached the Dallas Cowboys from 2003 to 2006 and said he enjoyed rebuilding teams.
“I hate routine. I really do, even it’s a successful routine, I don’t like it,” Parcells said. “I’m just a little … impatient for the next challenge. That grew as I went along. It did. I can’t say that’s a great quality.”
Ogden was the first draft pick by the Baltimore Ravens and became the team’s first Hall of Famer after earning a Super Bowl ring in 2000.
Sapp helped Tampa Bay win a title in 2002 while Robinson contributed to Green Bay winning the first two Super Bowls. Culp was a pass rush threat for Kansas city’s 1970 Super Bowl winners.