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Reason #29: Terrell Davis tops the NFL leaderboard in major accolades

Continuing our series with big-picture stuff, the number of NFL awards bestowed upon TD is not insignificant - and kind of really awesome (p.s. - don't forget to REC these articles!!)

Denver Broncos vs. Carolina Panthers, NFL Week 1 Photo by John Leyba/The Denver Post via Getty Images

1997 Super Bowl MVP.

1998 NFL MVP - (via both Associated Press and Pro Football Writers of America)

Two-time Offensive Player of the Year - 1996, 1998.

Three-time Pro-Bowler.

NFL 1990s All-Decade Team.

When making a case against Terrell Davis for the Hall of Fame (yes, I said "against" because that’s what must be happening to keep him from Canton), sports writers are obviously ignoring 1995-1998.

Because if they were paying attention, they would notice that Terrell Davis was consistently one of the biggest running back playmakers in that span.

And he has the NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE’S top awards to prove it. Not to mention this fabulous related stat:

And then, when you go to the Leaderboard section of Pro Football Reference’s Terrell Davis page, you are treated to an overabundance of accolades:

  • 7-time Offensive Player of the Week
  • 3-time 1st Team All Pro
  • NFL’s 1998 leader in rushing touchdowns (21), rushing yards (2,008), rushing yards/game (125.5) and rushing yards/attempt (5.1)
  • No. 1 in 1997 and 1998 as NFL’s "approximate value" to his team
  • Multiple seasons in the Top 10 for 12 different statistical categories - twelve!!

For all those who like the "short career" reason for turning Davis away from the Hall of Fame, I would first point to these multiple years of not just great play on the Denver Broncos, but outstanding play across the entire NFL.

And then I would point out that there is a reason the "quality over quantity" mantra is highlighted so often. Injury is an unfortunate happenstance of pro sports, so any player who takes advantage of his time at the pro ranks no matter how short - and does it from the get-go - should be applauded. And when that "taking advantage" involves two Super Bowl titles, multiple NFL MVP awards and a slew of other leaderboard acknowledgments, the case should be FOR Terrell Davis, not AGAINST.

Coming in as a rookie and putting up over 1,000 yards and then following that up with three more seasons of that plus more - including a rare 2,000-yard season - should be all it takes. Obviously it would have been great for TD and great for the Broncos if he didn’t blow out his knee.

But for the four seasons prior to that, Terrell Davis did just about as much as any one player could do to be consistently dominant at his position across the league.

Like Mark Schlereth has said, "TD wasn't the best at any one thing, but extremely gifted at EVERYTHING."