10 biggest snubs from the Pro Football Hall of Fame

(Photo by Ross Lewis/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ross Lewis/Getty Images) /
6 of 10
NFL Hall of Fame snubs
(Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /

5. Hall of Fame snubs: Randy Gradishar

Those Denver Broncos’ defenses of the 1970s and early ‘80s were something to watch. The original “Orange Crush” that spearheaded the team’s appearance in Super Bowl XII in 1977 was loaded with talented performers who simply got the job done.

The unit that lined up against the Dallas Cowboys on Super Sunday that season was led by ends Lyle Alzado and Barney Chavous and nose tackle Rubin Carter. The secondary was manned by cornerbacks Louis Wright and Steve Foley and safeties Billy Thompson and Bernard Jackson. And a magnificent linebacking corps included Bob Swenson, Joe Rizzo, inspirational Tom Jackson…and tackling machine Randy Gradishar.

The latter was a first-round pick in 1974 from Ohio State. He would last 10 years in the NFL and wound up leading the Broncos in stops in every year but his rookie campaign. He picked off 20 passes, added 13 fumbles recoveries and scored four touchdowns off those takeaways. Gradishar never missed a game, was named to the Pro Bowl seven times and earned All=Pro honors in 1977 and ’78.

It’s hard to imagine a player with this kind of consistent production not being enshrined in Canton, Ohio. Perhaps the former Buckeyes’ day is on the horizon. He is certainly a notable omission.