Peter King Admits To Slimy Hall Voting

February 3rd, 2020


Joe has long written that the Hall of Fame voting process has morphed into a politics-driven mess.

The 48 voters are supposed to vote for the best players and not give a crap about anything else, including off-field behavior and weaksauce nonsense like, ‘well, this guy isn’t as good but he’s been waiting longer.'”

Ironically, many of these voters are sportswriters, aka journalists, who pride themselves in their ethics. What’s more unethical than bending the rules of process you respect?

In his column today, NBC Sports super NFL insider Peter King, formerly of Sports Illustrated, wrote about this year’s Hall of Fame class and his votes over the weekend.

King explains that he didn’t vote for safety Troy Polamalu because Polamulu wasn’t in need of his vote. Ironically for Bucs fans, part of King’s rationale for getting slimy with his votes was that he wanted Tampa Bay legend John Lynch to get in.

• On the cut to 10, I voted for Atwater, Boselli, Bruce, Faneca, Hutchinson, Jones, Lynch, Mills, Polamalu and Thomas.

• On the cut to five, I voted for Atwater, Boselli, Hutchinson, James and Lynch.

6. I think an explanation for the lack of vote for Polamalu on the final five is necessary. I believe he was one of the top five candidates this year, and I believe in voting for the best five candidates. But because I felt certain Polamalu would make it regardless of my vote, I decided to vote for three players I felt were marginal after listening to the deliberations—Atwater, Boselli and Lynch. I don’t feel great about doing that, honestly. Our jobs are to vote for the best five, and I was totally on the fence about the fifth yea vote had I marked down Polamalu. It still bothers me a little bit. But I felt so strongly about the cases of Atwater, Boselli and Lynch, who were exceedingly close in my eyes, that I wanted to vote for them, knowing that a vote not for Polamalu was not going to keep him out. I’ve done this a couple of times before, and I absolutely do not want to make it a habit. It just felt like the right thing to do this year.

So in the case of King, politics likely worked in favor of John Lynch. But what about voters who likely thought, ‘Well, Steve Atwater has been waiting 16 years and Lynch has only been waiting 7 years, so I’ll vote for Atwater even though Lynch is better.’

Sadly, per Joe’s discussions with Ira Kaufman, Tampa Bay’s only Hall of Fame voter, Joe knows voters think that way.

For some freakin’ reason, it’s simply too hard for all voters to vote for who they think is best.

Joe is convinced former Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor became a first-ballot Hall of Fame three years ago because voters were playing politics and using Taylor as their final vote — a throwaway vote — in order to bolster chances of other players. Even Taylor admitted he was stunned to be voted in on his first try.

Whoever is really in charge at the Hall of Fame needs to remind voters the integrity of the Hall of Fame is jeopardy if they’re not voting for they believe are the best players, whether they like it or not. And if the Hall must change to allow half-votes or one-third votes when it gets to the final 5, in order to appropriately recognize ties, then so be it.

Maybe next year for Lynch.

24 Responses to “Peter King Admits To Slimy Hall Voting”

  1. Easy Says:

    “Well the Super Bowl is in Tampa next year so lets wait and put him in then.” HOF Voters

  2. 813bucboi Says:

    he’ll get in….

    but the process is BS….

    GO BUCS!!!!!

  3. D-Rome Says:

    The NFL Hall of Fame voters should not be limited to media only. It should change to mirror what the NFL did for their 100th Anniversary All Time Team.

  4. Sport Says:

    I’m sad for John, his family and Ira. But dude is 48, just rebuilt a team that made the SB and is making bank!

    Its dirty, you made some great points. But this story is tiresome, the entire HoF is overrated and political.

    Time to move on until next year.

    In BA I Trust!

  5. tmaxcon Says:

    the HOF was rendered meaningless the day the unqualified Dungy the Clown was enshrined ahead of Tom Flores and Jimmy Johnson. The Hall of Feel Good Stories and Mediocrity is laughable now that being said it fits the Politically Correct Trophies and Hugs for everyone in the name of inclusion. To be included you must earn it not have it handed to you because someone’s feelings were hurt…

  6. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Reporters shouldn’t vote. Prior HOFer’s should get the only votes.

  7. tmaxcon Says:

    you people are delusional thinking a one-year fluke championship team that could not win in the playoffs deserves the entire roster enshrined so laughable and so low standard bucfan….

    let me once again remind of the historical facts…

    2 playoff wins in 6 years is not legendary it’s pathetic

    1 Fluke championship with an asterisk because the head coach knew all the plays again is not legendary

    Dungy the clown teams and grudens after him were HORRIBLE TEAMS with a HIGHLY RANKED defense nothing more. Not legendary….

    Even on their best day bucs could lose 10 to 9 or 7 to 10….. Bucs never dominated and never were consistent winners. They were a 500 team with a highly ranked defense that could NOT win in postseason….

    gruden got the job done but again with an asterisk….

    Lynch was a good player who like vinceyoung55 benefited from Sapp driving the train….

    so move on and accept the small market irrelevant Bucs and their fluke championship deserve no respect and they get exactly what they deserve….

    just be happy you fools got the unqualified dungy the clown and vinceyoung55 in on Sapps coattails… he carried those fools their entire career and now you want him to carry them into hof too.

    if you don’t win in the postseason you don’t deserve recognition. it’s simple as that…. winners win when it matters most….

  8. Loyaltotheend Section 312 Says:

    He’s close but maybe a writer with a bigger voice and national presence is needed to present him. I like Irv and want Lynch to get in but if it’s not working can’t do the same thing year after year

    How many John Lynch speeches does Irv have in him?

  9. Loyaltotheend Section 312 Says:

    So I take it TJmax is not a Bucs fan…

  10. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Of course players who have waited longer won’t be as good, Joe. There were different standards when they played. It doesn’t make them less deserving. These days, players are stronger and better than ever.

    The Hall of Fame shouldn’t be about which player is better all of the time. It should be a combination of things.

    The large class this year at least thinned the herd.

  11. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    tmaxcon Says
    “you people are delusional thinking a one-year fluke championship team that could not win in the playoffs…”

    Um…your facts are off. They made it to the NFC Championship game multiple times, meaning they won in the playoffs multiple times. They were a top defense for a decade. Under Dungy, they would have gone to the Superbowl if not for a bad call at the end of the NFC Championship game, resulting in a rule change.

  12. stpetebucsfan Says:

    The HOF..Oscars..Grammys are and have always been popularity contests. They hold NO true meaning other than a group of select people’s opinion.

    I have no problem with King’s thinking because he’s still trying to ULTIMATELY get the best guys in HIS OPINION into the Hall.

    So we have an opinion contest to get in the Hall and then we go…oh their voting their opinions. DUH

    What would upset me is if voters were literally bought off e.g a wealthy owner like Kraft or Jones or Snyder tried to influence the vote with $$$…straight up corruption. Or if the NFL powers tried to influence voters “for the good of the game” or any other specious thinking.

    The Grammys are now viewed as big a sham as the Senate Impeachment trial.
    I do not see that in the HOF voting…yet.

    The Oscars a viewed as lacking diversity. While the NFL has a problem with HC diversity I do not believe the league has that problem in HOF voting. In fact Lynch is obviously white and was left out in favor of black players.

    So we can whine that popularity contest is effected by least it’s not rigged or racist.

  13. tmaxcon Says:

    Loyaltotheend Section 312 Says:
    February 3rd, 2020 at 9:37 am
    So I take it TJmax is not a Bucs fan…

    i am a very passionate bucfan that being said, I am not a delusional fool living in denial and rewriting history to justify my team’s failures…..

    not one thing I posted was inaccurate pal…. even during the heyday bucs could lose any given Sunday because they were a highly ranked defense on a HORRIBLE team coached by a 1-dimensional ignorant stubborn fool

  14. Brandon Says:

    tmax says, “if you don’t win in the postseason you don’t deserve recognition. it’s simple as that…. winners win when it matters most….”

    What does the world’s biggest loser know about recognition deserved for winning? Seriously?

    The Bucs teams from 97-2005 were dominant on D… one of the most dominant D’s ever… Their 10 year stretch was something no teams have done before or after. Their pass defense still ranks as the absolute #1 all-time. Opposing QBs had a 48 rating when throwing the ball… an incomplete pass is 36… then factor in the sacks and it’s easy to see why that team was no fluke. They went into the playoffs and trounced the pass happy 49ers, slapped around the pass happy Eagles, and regardless of how you feel about Gruden (and nobody talks about how his players and coaches also knew him), they faced the #1 passing team in the league… and predictably slaughtered them. It’s predictable because when the #1 D plays the #1 O it almost always goes the D’s way… especially when you consider that the Bucs D was #1 by a huge margin while the Raiders were only slightly better than several other offenses. This was a game of the #1 offense in the league against the #1 all-time best defense EVER against the pass. There was no fluke… the only fluke in that game was the 21 points the Raiders scored. A blocked punt and a Jerry Porter TD where clearly didn’t get his foot in the back of the endzone but the officials decided to give it to him to make the game more interesting. That team would have beaten ANYBODY that night.

  15. tmaxcon Says:

    he Bucs teams from 97-2005 were dominant on D…

    Unfortunately, son the game is three phases and the bucs were absolutely horrendous on offense and special teams…. Not to mention dungy the clown was one of the worst game-day coaches in nfl history…… playing scared and not to lose is for pansys arse’s and why even during the heyday they could lose 9 to 7…. you need points people…. you can’t rewrite history because you little feelings are hurt being dominant on d and having nothing to show for it but 1 fluke championship is laughable…

    post season results prove it was a one year wonder lucky team

  16. tmaxcon Says:


    that’s a great feel-good story but only winning 5 playoff games during that time and 3 in one year is laughable…. small-town losers confuse popularity with greatness and 1 good year with greatness all too often.

  17. Loyaltotheend Section 312 Says:

    Tmax says-

    2 playoff wins in 6 years is not legendary it’s pathetic

    This has nothing to do with Lynch this is a Dungy stat I assume

    1 Fluke championship with an asterisk because the head coach knew all the plays again is not legendary

    Dominating a division winner in the 49ers and beating the #1 seed on the road is a fluke? Not the player’s fault the Raiders were still using Grudens playbook

    if you don’t win in the postseason you don’t deserve recognition. it’s simple as that…. winners win when it matters most….

    But they did win in the postseason… you are contradicting yourself here. There is no asterisk in any Super Bowl record. No scandal. No cheating. No spygate or deflate gate. They won a championship.

  18. Mort Says:

    Edgerrin James over John Lynch is absolutely disgusting.

  19. Kyle Keithley Says:

    Barber not making it to at least the final 10 is disgusting as well.

  20. WestChap Says:

    Lynch’s treatment the last few years has driven home how ludicrous the voting process is/has become. I would be tempted to lobby for more player input but then I remember LVD’s recurring Pro Bowl snubs.

    Like it or not, until Bucs have a sustained run of success it will remain difficult for great players to receive the recognition they are due… see what happened to Shaq and his league leading sacks if you have any doubt.

    I do wonder when I see folks questioning the greatness of the Bucs in the years leading up to the SB win. The Bucs should have had at least one more trip to the SB if not for the refs… and even more if we’d had anything remotely passable (pun intended) on offense. I’ve always thought the Dungy worship was unwarranted versus Kiffen’s contribution and the triple-headed monster of Sapp/Brooks/Lynch… and wonder what legacy we might have had if Dungy had left a few years earlier. Its heresy, I know. Thinking of the Dungy years, every time I get reminded Mike Shula is still coaching offense in the NFL I wonder if his last name has anything to do with it.

  21. Buczilla Says:

    Everyone but Ira (duh) and Charean Williams (maybe a handful of others too) should be be removed from the selection committee. Lynch AND Barber were head and shoulders above everyone selected this year outside of Troy. It’s a sham process and I’m done ranting about it until next year. 😛

  22. westernbuc Says:

    Peter King went a long time voting against Lynch. What changed?

  23. Razor Ramone Says:

    Ethics and reporters?

  24. Siege the Bay Says:

    LOL the people who never played are the one’s who vote. What a joke. It should be coaches, player, GM’s, and scouts who do the voting.