Saturday, January 31, 2009

Bruce Smith

Bruce Smith, who played in four Super Bowls with the Buffalo Bills, arrived at the podium Saturday with crumpled tissues in his right hand after he was voted into Pro Football’s Hall of Fame.

Hayes, the 1964 Olympic gold medalist in the 100 meters, parlayed his speed into an 11-year football career, playing all but his final season, in 1975, for Dallas. In the statement read by Hester, Hayes gave thanks to many before concluding, “Just thank everyone in the whole world.”

The 45-year-old Smith, who has no championship ring to show for his four Super Bowl appearances in the early 1990s, gained entry into the Hall but tight end Shannon Sharpe, who starred on three Super Bowl-championship teams, did not. Receiver Cris Carter and the former N.F.L. commissioner Paul Tagliabue also failed to receive enough votes.

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