Making The Case For Simeon Rice

September 27th, 2023

Bucs legend Simeon Rice.

How about something uplifting for a change? Joe’s worn out already typing about that nasty Monday Night Football game.

With all due respect to Bucs icon Rondé Barber, Joe always believed Simeon Rice should have been the fourth defensive player from the 2002 Super Bowl champs to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

(Yes, of course Barber was absolutely worthy of being selected.)

That hasn’t happened. And Joe has heard Ira Kaufman moan about how Rice can’t get any traction among his fellow Hall of Fame selectors after previously reaching the semifinalist stage.

(For background, only the top 15 vote-getters each year have the privilege of having a selector make their case before the annual gathering of the Hall of Fame selectors. That’s when columnist Ira Kaufman would get a chance to speak on Rice’s behalf.)

The Bucs’ defense that year was one of the best in NFL history. And if you think about it, Rice made it legendary.

When the Bucs signed Rice in 2001, he turned that defense from special to legendary. The Bucs had been missing a scary edge rusher. Rice filled the final void.

John Turney of Talk of Fame Network wrote about how Rice is undervalued as a Hall of Fame candidate. When judging players worthy of the Hall, one element selectors look at is stats. Another is a player’s impact.

With Rice, he was absolutely clutch in the biggest games when the Bucs needed him most.

With five tackles, two sacks and forced a fumble in [Super Bowl XXXVII], Rice played a key role in the victory. But he had at least one sack in every Bucs playoff game while in Tampa, too, not just the 2002 playoff run — with seven in five games, forcing fumbles in four of them.

That is the literal definition of a gamewrecker. A dude who changed playoff games, including a Super Bowl.

Joe thought Rice (129 career sacks) was the Super Bowl MVP back in January of 2003. Dexter Jackson got that honor for picking off Raiders quarterback Rich Gannon twice.

So yeah, Joe is glad to see Ira isn’t the only Hall of Fame selector who believes Rice is overlooked as a Hall of Fame candidate.

27 Responses to “Making The Case For Simeon Rice”

  1. SlyPirate Says:

    Great label, Joe … “Game Wrecker”

    Other label candidates:
    Unblockable on 3rd down
    Better Than Strahan
    4th most sacks by DE all time

  2. Delusional Intelligence Says:

    Joe thought Rice was the Super Bowl MVP back in January of 2003.

    Without a doubt. He was robbed. He even improved against the run when he came to us from AZ. He was the master at the strip sack.

  3. garro Says:

    Five consecutive with 10 plus. Not to mention the forced fumbles etc. When the Bucs needed a play, he was there. Many times he was a major reason for turnovers because QBs knew they had him coming at them.

    He was underrated even when he was here and putting up numbers as I recall.

    Go Bucs

  4. Nicky666 Says:


  5. Eric Says:

    I’ve scream until the cows come home the Hall of Fame has no credibility to me until Sim is inducted he wasn’t well liked by the national media so what he was a great player who earned his slot!

  6. Smoothbayrider Says:

    He has more career sacks than JJ Watt, he’s also got a SB ring. He belongs.

  7. stpetebucfan Says:

    Agree with all the sentiment about putting Simeon in the HOF.

    He was a genuine character who enjoyed all of life! Sometimes people joked wondering what planet he came from. Personally I found Sim’s personality very entertaining but I’m not sure it helped with the writers.

    Two major hurdles…Tampa was a much smaller market when Sim played here and he got lost on a team full of HOFers.

  8. WillieG Says:

    Rice definitely deserves to be in the Hall. I don’t understand why he isn’t in the conversation. Another guy who deserves to be in the Hall redefined a position just like Barber, and he’s never mentioned, not even by Joe or Ira.

    Super Bowl champion (XXXVII)
    3× First-team All-Pro (1997–1999)
    Second-Team All-Pro (1996)
    6× Pro Bowl (1997–2002)

    Any other position player with those accomplishments would be given a jacket his first year of eligibility. So why not Mike?

    Yeah, the (stupid) argument is that he was a fullback who was frequently used as running back. Will that argument eliminate tight ends who were frequently used as wide receivers? Will it eliminate linebackers who were frequently used as edge rushers? Quarterbacks who run more than pass? Cornerbacks who also play safety? No? Then why is it used against Mikey’s enshrinement?

    I’m being serious. Why isn’t Mike ever spoken about for the HoF?

  9. ModHairKen Says:

    Well, is Ira campaigning or only complaining?

    Get on the phone. Talk to the voters. Find out what is bothering them and make the case. Enough whining.

  10. Boss Says:

    Guy single handedly wrecked opposing qbs……..I see a lot of his style in JTS

    JTS will learn to be a closer like Rice.

  11. AKicknTheBucNuts Says:

    Let’s list Rachaad White as a “Game Wrecker” too.

    That he wrecks any chance of running the ball effectively.

  12. DBS Says:

    So looks like everytime I see Mod Hair make a comment someone is complaining or whining. He has had enough of it. Guess what you do just about everytime you comment?

  13. DBS Says:

    I would like to see Rice in next. He is long overdue. He earned his place in the hall.

  14. It's Corn Says:

    Borderline… I don’t think he ever led the league in sacks, but was near the top many years. And he was a great player for sure.

  15. Razor Ramone Says:

    When they would play “Welcome To The Jungle” on the PA and Simeon would start playing that air Les Paul, it was usually bad ass news for the opposing QB.

  16. D-Rome Says:

    Many people consider J.J. Watt a future Hall of Famer. Simeon’s numbers are just as good.

  17. Joe Says:

    Let’s list Rachaad White as a “Game Wrecker” too.


  18. Cobraboy Says:

    If Rice is not HoF material, I don’t know who is.

    I suspect, once again, politics plays a role. Rice was sort of prickly to reporters…who are HoF voters…so I semi-understand the snub, but do NOT agree with it.

    Why is Rice not in the RoH? That is also pure bulloney.

  19. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Big Sim, the Cosmic one, should already be in. Hopefully soon.

  20. CleanHouse Says:

    Wholeheartedly agree w Willie G about Mike Alstott- nobody like him…

    Simeon to the Hall as well!!!

  21. Joshua porter Says:

    Imo I think he should have gotten in before ronde. Both deserve to be in the hof

  22. Pickgrin Says:

    Jason Taylor – 233 Games played – 139 sacks – double digit sacks in 5 out of 15 seasons – HOF on 1st ballot

    Simeon Rice – 174 Games played – 122 sacks – double digit sacks in 8 out of 12 seasons – Can’t even get into the conversation…..

  23. Mike C Says:

    Pickgrin, excellent comparison, only reason for Alstott not getting in….. same reason Chucky didn’t like him, Fumbling. Also numerous are not earth shattering.

  24. orlbucfan Says:

    Big whoop. Rice is in the past. Glad Ronde finally got the recognition he so justly deserved.

  25. Buccos Says:

    Simeon Rice wa my favorite Buc of All time. Right there with Derrick Brooks. Rice was the Myles Garrett of his generation. Unblockable and the absolute master of the strip sack

  26. StretchOMatic Says:

    Rice most definitely should have been the SB MVP! I said that as that game was winding down…unfortunately, votes are cast for that honor before the game is over. I think with around 7 minutes to play and Jackson got the votes before Rice was not finished adding stats to his amazing game that day!

  27. Kidfloflo Says:

    JTS whose body and speed are similiar to Rice needed to hang with that cat all off season and learn the intricate details it takes to bring game to the next level! Plus he is an interesting dude as a person and could have gleamed some of his traits