Maybe you didn't hear them but I'm betting there were cheers all across Western New York on Saturday as Bills fans received word that Andre Reed was finally elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
I'm sure you felt like I did, as a combination of joy and pride took over your body. Bills Nation was once again able to stick out its collective chest and celebrate one of the greatest players in franchise history receiving the ultimate individual honor.
It was an honor long overdue for Reed, who was a finalist for the eighth time and will become the 10th member of the Bills organization to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio. Reed's resume was never in question but an annual logjam at receiver kept the Kutztown State product from joining teammates Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas, Bruce Smith and James Lofton as well as his head coach Marv Levy.
Reed recorded 951 catches for 13,198 yards and 87 touchdowns over 16 years in the NFL. When he retired following the 2000 season, Reed was third in catches and sixth in yards. The increase in reliance on the passing game and rules changes designed to help that part of the game have made it easier for receivers to put up similar numbers. 13 years after his final game in the league, Reed now stands 11th in catches and 13th in yards.
Perhaps the voters who knew Reed deserved to be in the Hall of Fame also knew it might be tougher for Reed with Marvin Harrison and Tim Brown quite likely earning election in the future and with the likes of Randy Moss, Terrell Owens and Isaac Bruce coming up for consideration down the road.
Reed's career as a Bill was phenomenal but it can sometimes get pushed into the background since he played along side the greatest quarterback in franchise history, the greatest defensive player and if not the greatest, then the second greatest running back.
While Reed wasn't always the focal point of the offense, he was a tremendous weapon. Whether it was his reliable hands, his route running, his toughness in making catches over the middle, his run after catch ability or his clutch performances in the playoffs, Reed did it all in 15 seasons with the Bills. He was also one of the best conditioned players to ever put on a Bills uniform. Every summer when Reed reported for training camp, he was absolutely chiseled.
I'll always consider myself incredibly fortunate to have covered the great Bills teams of the early 1990's. They were some of the most entertaining games and some of the most interesting athletes I have seen in my nearly 25 years of working in Buffalo. Buffalo and the Bills were the envy of many fans around the NFL because of the way the team played and the success they had. Regular season victories were expected, not hoped for, and playoff games were an annual part of the schedule.
I don't dwell on the past but certainly the Bills struggles over the last 13 years have increased the fondness we have for those great teams as we yearn for those special days to return. Andre Reed, like so many of his teammates back then, had a burning desire to win and to be the best. It's what drove Reed and the rest to the top of the AFC each year.
Reed belonged in the Hall of Fame and come August 2nd he will take his place in football history. My guess is he will be the final member of those great Bills teams to be so honored. Players like Steve Tasker, Darryl Talley, Cornelius Bennett and the late Kent Hull were great at their respective positions but I don't think any of them will be elected to the Hall of Fame.
Tasker's chances might get a boost from the induction of Raiders punter Ray Guy, which is a nod to special teams, but I still think its a longshot.
That should make this year's induction ceremony even more special as it gives Bills Nation one more chance to make the trip to Canton and express its love for a very special group of players and teams that we will remember for the rest of our lives.
This should have been carried on this station live Howard. Things positive don't happen here very often and something this important was brushed aside. Very disappointing.
One more player should join them,Steve Tasker!!!!
congrats to MR REED.
what did people think about that. that man should of been there a long time ago. Its like i said if any man go down that middle. and get crack and still holds on the ball andrun it in for a touch down; than you must of been talking about andre reed. It was a sight to see. for the ones who didn't get chance to see all them players play. All i can say is you miss out of seeing; one of the best team we had here in buffalo. When i say they were unstopable thats just what you saw every sunday. And to put the iceing on the cake. We get pepper johnson too. Boy i was living it up; For joy for lol. Congrats go out to both of them. lets go ruff buff.
I'm boycotting the talk shows today. WGR not carrying the Reed induction live Saturday got me peeowed. Just can't get over it.
I didn't hear...
...anything on WGR. Well, at least nothing about Andre Reed. Or the Super Bowl. Or anything else significant. This station always disappoints and just offers the bare minimum. Good thing the hosts are so full of themselves. At least they're happy.
Re: Kinda late
YOU ARE CORRECT SIR! Probably the last Bill to get in the Hall of Fame for a long, long time. WGR, the Bills flagship station, couldn't offer the listener anything. No excuse for this pathetic showing.
NEXT GO BILLS KEITH FROM FL.
NOOOOOO!!!! As a pure NFL fan, this is a cheapening of the NFL hall of fame! REED was the worst "BIGGAME" RECIEVER of his time! He was selfish, overrated, and dumb. A benefactor of a "homer" media frenzy.
I am soooo happy Andre finally got in!!! Very deserving of this honor.
Sports station?? SHOULD Have been LIVE!!! SPEND SOME MONEY Management!! Pure low budget cheap upper management. Congratulations Andre, We all in Buffalo are Happy. Thanks for the memories.
we want levy and don't forget about bruce smith.
hello tasker h.o.f.
Hello Mr REED !
NOW THEY SAY YOU CAN'T BE OUR WR COACH. well tell them this. how you like me now; in the hof. partner. for lol with a smile with it.for lol.
re:to fast facts
I agree with you 100%. Ok seahawks won ok we saw that beat down. but andre goes to the hall of fame. and you don't carry it live; That was a lack of respect for reed. All this crazy talk about. Who you think is the best qb manning or montana. Who the hell cares; I turm that mess off and went to the bar. And they weren't watching that mess Too. So i said hey fans reed just made it too the hall of fame,and te bills just sign pepper johnson. Boy the bar went off, we party like the bills just won the superbowl, for lol.
what player was you watching. he was not a big game wideout. What you must of been lock up some where; not to be able to see that he was a game changer wideout. And oh my god where do you get dumb and selfish mess from. Reed was always like the rest of the players. they would tell jim kelly we don't care who gets ball or stats. As long as we win this game. Mr dummie how do you think james lofton got to the hof. Because kelly would spread the ball around. Even tasker was doing his thing as a wideout. All of us was like what the hell is steve tasker playing wideout. And we found out quick. Its call touchdown. for lol.
I don't know how much you know about NFL Football but Reed was the best WR going over the middle of the field that I ever seen!The rules changes are way more favorable for WR's in todays game than they were when Reed was playing!#83 Andre Reed BELONGS IN THE HOF,PERIOD!!!!!!Congrats #83,you deserve it!
re: to reed!!!!
See we told you he was the best. before they change them rules many wideouts that was in the league didn't like going through that middle. but the ones who did are in the hof. or going to be their soon. Thats why we who did get to watch all them play was like. Enjoy this because we knew the rules were going to be change and these type of players we were not going to see in the nfl anymore. And thats when football was called hardball.