NFL releases controversial 2000s All-Decade Team

Cold, Hard Football Facts for Jan 31, 2010



The NFL released its 2000s All-Decade Team Sunday before the Pro Bowl (see list below). It's an interesting exercise, but one that eventually devolves into controversy and becomes a curious black mark upon the people who create the lists.
 
Virtually every offensive player in All-Decade Team history has found his way into the Hall of Fame. Not so much on defense. Numerous defenders pegged the best at their position over an entire decade are quickly forgotten by Hall of Fame voters in their effort to hand borderline Hall of Famers like Dan Fouts or Warren Moon an express ticket to Canton.
 
Look at the 1980s All Decade team: 18 of the 22 offensive players on it are also in the Hall of Fame. But just 11 of the 24 defensive members of the All Decade Team have found their way into the Hall of Fame.
 
You might be inclined to say, "hey, dem's da breaks." But dem ain't da breaks. Here's why: the All Decade teams are compiled by the very same committee that selects players for the Hall of Fame.
 
Even a breakdown within positions displays the Hall of Fame committee's many biases that you'd expect out of average fans, but not out of those charged with handing out football immortality. For example, look back at that 1980s All-Decade team: the four offensive players who've failed to make Canton? Yup. All of them offensive linemen (Jimbo Covert, Joe Jacoby, Russ Grimm, Bill Fralic). The receivers, running backs and quarterbacks are all in.
 
On the other side of the ball, all four defensive ends on the 1980s All Decade Team are in the Hall. But only one of the four defensive tackles (Dan Hampton) have found their way there.
 
We're not saying a player deserves a free pass to the Hall of Fame just because he's on the All-Decade Team. That's not the case. But a little more consistency would be nice.
 
With all that said, the 2000s All Decade team is rock solid. There are some quibbles here and there: Hell, Dwight Freeney might not even be the best defensive end on his team – hello Robert Mathis. But in most cases it's hard to argue.
 
The Super Bowl, meanwhile, will give a showcase to three members of the 2000s All-Decade Team: Freeney, his Colts teammate Peyton Manning (guy who plays quarterback ... you might have heard of him), and Saints safety Darren Sharper, a guy who secured his place in the Hall of Fame with his MVP-caliber effort in 2009.
 
Of course, if history is any indication, the All-Decade Team might be as far as it goes for Sharper.
 
NFL ALL-DECADE TEAM – 2000s
(2010 Pro Bowl participants listed in Italics)
 
OFFENSE
QUARTERBACKS (2)
 
FULLBACK (1)
Tom Brady
 
Lorenzo Neal
Peyton Manning
 
 
 
 
TIGHT ENDS (2)
RUNNING BACKS (4)
 
Antonio Gates
Shaun Alexander
 
Tony Gonzalez
Jamal Lewis
 
 
Edgerrin James
 
WIDE RECEIVERS (4)
LaDainian Tomlinson
 
Marvin Harrison
 
 
Torry Holt
OFFENSIVE TACKLES (4)
 
Randy Moss
Walter Jones
 
Terrell Owens
Jonathan Ogden
 
 
Orlando Pace
 
CENTERS (2)
William Roaf
 
Olin Kreutz
 
 
Kevin Mawae
GUARDS (4)
 
 
Larry Allen
 
HEAD COACHES (2)
Alan Faneca
 
Bill Belichick
Steve Hutchinson
 
Tony Dungy
Will Shields
 
 

 
DEFENSE
DEFENSIVE ENDS (4)
 
DEFENSIVE TACKLES (4)
Dwight Freeney
 
La'Roi Glover 
Julius Peppers
 
Warren Sapp
Michael Strahan
 
Richard Seymour
Jason Taylor
 
Kevin Williams
 
 
 
CORNERBACKS (4)
 
SAFETIES (4)
Ronde Barber
 
Brian Dawkins
Champ Bailey
 
Troy Polamalu
Ty Law
 
Ed Reed
Charles Woodson
 
Darren Sharper
 
 
 
LINEBACKERS (6)
 
 
Derrick Brooks
 
 
Ray Lewis
 
 
Joey Porter
 
 
Zach Thomas
 
 
Brian Urlacher
 
 
DeMarcus Ware
 
 
 
SPECIALISTS
PUNTERS (2)
 
PUNT RETURNERS (2)
Shane Lechler
 
Dante Hall
Brian Moorman
 
Devin Hester
 
 
 
KICKERS (2)
 
KICK RETURNERS (2)
David Akers
 
Joshua Cribbs
Adam Vinatieri
 
Dante Hall

From our partners




Must See Videos
NFL Draft Changing Cities, Moving Out Of New York City | FootballNation.com
2014 NFL Draft: No Dunking In Football
2014 NFL Combine Winners

Team Pages
AFC East NFC
South
North
West

Connect With Us
Sign up for our newsletter to recieve all the latest news and updates...
Privacy guaranteed. We'll never share your info.




The Football Nation Network

© Copyright 2014 Football Nation LLC. Privacy Policy & Terms of Use
Some images property of Getty Images or Icon/SMI