Pro Football Hall Of Fame 2012: Curtis Martin Of New York Jets A Hall Of Famer

Curtis Martin elected to Pro Football Hall Of Fame

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Pro Football Hall Of Fame 2012: Curtis Martin Press Conference

Shortly after being voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame Saturday night former New York Jets running back Curtis Martin held a conference call with members of the media. The full transcript of Martin’s news conference is below.

On if he has spoken with Bill Parcells…
Yes, he called to congratulate me. One of the things he said (was), “I read the statement that you said in the newspaper and I want you to know that I would reverse that to you.” The statement that he was referring to, I can’t remember exactly what paper it was, I was being interviewed and I said, Bill Parcells has meant so much to me and this is almost like a serendipitous time to be nominated right now. If I could, I would willingly, in a heartbeat, forsake my chance of getting inducted this year if it would guarantee that Bill Parcells would get inducted. He called me to say that he read that and feels the same way towards me.

On if he told Parcells that he would like him to be his presenter at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony…
No, we didn’t speak about that yet. I told him that I would call him after the show was over, but there’s no one more befitting to introduce me or present me at the Hall of Fame. Parcells has meant everything to my career. There’s God and then there’s Parcells, as far as the meaning they’ve had on my career. I’m very grateful that Parcells is just the person who walked me through this entire process. I feel even the years he wasn’t my coach, what he left (that) somewhat embedded in my character was different ways of how to be a man and how to be a professional. I know there were many players that didn’t take to his style, but for me, he was almost like a father figure. It didn’t seem as though there was a lot of love between us during our careers, but as soon as it was over, he and I became even closer. I can’t say enough words about the man. I’m so grateful that he’s passed through my life and is still in my life.

On his relationship with his mother and her reaction to him being selected…
During my career, my mother would come to the games and never sit in the chair and watch the games. She would walk through the stadium and watch it on the little TVs by the concession stands because she was always afraid of something happening to me. Then, she would meet me after the game in the tunnel.
It’s funny, even now, six years removed, that hasn’t changed. She went in the kitchen and my assistant, Alexandra, took her shoes because my mother was about to walk out in the hall because she was too nervous to watch the Hall of Fame.

On what his mother’s reaction was when he found out he was selected to the Hall of Fame…
She was just elated. I think there’s a Bible verse that talks about your parents’ pride. I’m definitely my mother’s pride. I’ve been very vocal about saying this – she’s my hero. My mother has done so much and sacrificed so much to see that I just grew up properly. I’m so grateful to her. There’s nothing that I could really do to repay her except try my best to succeed in life and be the best man that I can.

On how much he thinks winning the NFL rushing title at age 31 helped seal his selection…
I think that may have been one of the factors that weighed in. That’s something that I’m proud of as far as an individual accomplishment, because especially coming off the year that I had previously, I heard a lot of talk about me being washed up and old, whether or not there were so many miles on the tires and all of that. To be able to come out and feel the way I felt and have the year that I had that year, that was tremendous to me. To actually win a rushing title, if I could say that I had one individual goal as an athlete, as a running back, it was to win the rushing title. That meant a lot to me because I felt as though I could do that the following year. Unfortunately, I had that career-ending injury, but I would say the best I ever felt in my career was during the latter part of it.

On if the talk about him being washed up motivated him…
I’m not the type of guy that talks a lot of stuff, but I’m very competitive. I’m relentless when I’m sure about something or when I’m focused on something. All the talk, it’s hard to even say that it motivated me because I don’t think it factored in so much. I think it was more a result of me being focused on putting my best performance out there on the field. I mean, that’s what they pay us to do, to be in tip-top shape and do our best at our job. It just really felt good to come out and be able to do something like that when I was, I think, 31 years old.

On how disappointed Parcells was not to be selected when he talked to him…
He called me before the show, before it was announced. We both just wished each other the best. I think I was probably more disappointed because for me, he meant so much to me. If I did dream about anything, it would have been going into the Hall of Fame with the guy that I feel was responsible for my career being what it had been. That’s the only somewhat bittersweet moment for me, is that I was really looking forward to either Bill going in or us going in together. That would have been like icing on the cake for me.

On how much it means to him to be a great example off the field to young players and fans…
I think many people become professional athletes and football players to be just that, football players. I became a football player to be a role model. Moreso than the NFL, being a football player or a running back, in my mind, my career was being a role model. I took that to heart. Everything that I did from the time I entered the NFL until the day I retired, even until today, it was all in recognition that I have been gifted and blessed to be in this position and in this situation. More important to me than anything during my career, it was the type of man that I was and the example that I was, not only to my teammates, to the general public, but even more importantly, to kids because they really look up to us. Again, just to reiterate, when I view my career, my career was being a role model, not necessarily a football player. Playing football was just the vehicle that enabled me to be able to do what make my heart sing, which is to impact people’s lives in a positive way.

Closing remarks…
I would just like to say thank you to all the reporters who have covered me over the years (and) to all the coaches who have coached me. I’d like to say a big thanks to the owners, Robert Kraft, Mr. (Leon) Hess, and Mr. Woody Johnson. I really appreciate the opportunity to represent you and your team. I definitely would like to thank all of the teammates that have been a part of my career and that I played with because I know that there is no way I’m in this situation without them. Lastly, I’d also like to thank all of the fans. At the end of the day, I feel like the fans, moreso than the money, the fame, the power, the accolades and everything, the fans are a big part of the reason why I played the game. Like I said in my retirement speech, I really hope that I’ve been as good to them as they’ve been to me.

Continue

Pro Football Hall Of Fame 2012: Curtis Martin Press Conference

Shortly after being voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame Saturday night former New York Jets running back Curtis Martin held a conference call with members of the media. The full transcript of Martin’s news conference is below.

On if he has spoken with Bill Parcells…
Yes, he called to congratulate me. One of the things he said (was), “I read the statement that you said in the newspaper and I want you to know that I would reverse that to you.” The statement that he was referring to, I can’t remember exactly what paper it was, I was being interviewed and I said, Bill Parcells has meant so much to me and this is almost like a serendipitous time to be nominated right now. If I could, I would willingly, in a heartbeat, forsake my chance of getting inducted this year if it would guarantee that Bill Parcells would get inducted. He called me to say that he read that and feels the same way towards me.

On if he told Parcells that he would like him to be his presenter at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony…
No, we didn’t speak about that yet. I told him that I would call him after the show was over, but there’s no one more befitting to introduce me or present me at the Hall of Fame. Parcells has meant everything to my career. There’s God and then there’s Parcells, as far as the meaning they’ve had on my career. I’m very grateful that Parcells is just the person who walked me through this entire process. I feel even the years he wasn’t my coach, what he left (that) somewhat embedded in my character was different ways of how to be a man and how to be a professional. I know there were many players that didn’t take to his style, but for me, he was almost like a father figure. It didn’t seem as though there was a lot of love between us during our careers, but as soon as it was over, he and I became even closer. I can’t say enough words about the man. I’m so grateful that he’s passed through my life and is still in my life.

On his relationship with his mother and her reaction to him being selected…
During my career, my mother would come to the games and never sit in the chair and watch the games. She would walk through the stadium and watch it on the little TVs by the concession stands because she was always afraid of something happening to me. Then, she would meet me after the game in the tunnel.
It’s funny, even now, six years removed, that hasn’t changed. She went in the kitchen and my assistant, Alexandra, took her shoes because my mother was about to walk out in the hall because she was too nervous to watch the Hall of Fame.

On what his mother’s reaction was when he found out he was selected to the Hall of Fame…
She was just elated. I think there’s a Bible verse that talks about your parents’ pride. I’m definitely my mother’s pride. I’ve been very vocal about saying this – she’s my hero. My mother has done so much and sacrificed so much to see that I just grew up properly. I’m so grateful to her. There’s nothing that I could really do to repay her except try my best to succeed in life and be the best man that I can.

On how much he thinks winning the NFL rushing title at age 31 helped seal his selection…
I think that may have been one of the factors that weighed in. That’s something that I’m proud of as far as an individual accomplishment, because especially coming off the year that I had previously, I heard a lot of talk about me being washed up and old, whether or not there were so many miles on the tires and all of that. To be able to come out and feel the way I felt and have the year that I had that year, that was tremendous to me. To actually win a rushing title, if I could say that I had one individual goal as an athlete, as a running back, it was to win the rushing title. That meant a lot to me because I felt as though I could do that the following year. Unfortunately, I had that career-ending injury, but I would say the best I ever felt in my career was during the latter part of it.

On if the talk about him being washed up motivated him…
I’m not the type of guy that talks a lot of stuff, but I’m very competitive. I’m relentless when I’m sure about something or when I’m focused on something. All the talk, it’s hard to even say that it motivated me because I don’t think it factored in so much. I think it was more a result of me being focused on putting my best performance out there on the field. I mean, that’s what they pay us to do, to be in tip-top shape and do our best at our job. It just really felt good to come out and be able to do something like that when I was, I think, 31 years old.

On how disappointed Parcells was not to be selected when he talked to him…
He called me before the show, before it was announced. We both just wished each other the best. I think I was probably more disappointed because for me, he meant so much to me. If I did dream about anything, it would have been going into the Hall of Fame with the guy that I feel was responsible for my career being what it had been. That’s the only somewhat bittersweet moment for me, is that I was really looking forward to either Bill going in or us going in together. That would have been like icing on the cake for me.

On how much it means to him to be a great example off the field to young players and fans…
I think many people become professional athletes and football players to be just that, football players. I became a football player to be a role model. Moreso than the NFL, being a football player or a running back, in my mind, my career was being a role model. I took that to heart. Everything that I did from the time I entered the NFL until the day I retired, even until today, it was all in recognition that I have been gifted and blessed to be in this position and in this situation. More important to me than anything during my career, it was the type of man that I was and the example that I was, not only to my teammates, to the general public, but even more importantly, to kids because they really look up to us. Again, just to reiterate, when I view my career, my career was being a role model, not necessarily a football player. Playing football was just the vehicle that enabled me to be able to do what make my heart sing, which is to impact people’s lives in a positive way.

Closing remarks…
I would just like to say thank you to all the reporters who have covered me over the years (and) to all the coaches who have coached me. I’d like to say a big thanks to the owners, Robert Kraft, Mr. (Leon) Hess, and Mr. Woody Johnson. I really appreciate the opportunity to represent you and your team. I definitely would like to thank all of the teammates that have been a part of my career and that I played with because I know that there is no way I’m in this situation without them. Lastly, I’d also like to thank all of the fans. At the end of the day, I feel like the fans, moreso than the money, the fame, the power, the accolades and everything, the fans are a big part of the reason why I played the game. Like I said in my retirement speech, I really hope that I’ve been as good to them as they’ve been to me.

Continue

2012 NFL Hall Of Fame: Curtis Martin Inducted Into Pro Football Hall Of Fame; No Bill Parcells

The 2012 NFL Hall of Fame class is set and former New York Jets running back, Curtis Martin has officially been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Martin played for the Jets from 1998-2005. He rushed for over 1,000 yards in each of his first 10 seasons in the NFL and won rookie of the year in 1995. Martin was also selected to five Pro Bowls and named to the All-Pro team in 2004. He was is currently fourth on the NFL's all-time rushing list.

"I'd like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to our own Curtis Martin, who will forever stand as one of the greats of the NFL and one of the best to ever wear a Jets uniform. His accomplishments on the field are matched only by his countless acts of kindness and philanthropy off the field during his career, for which he never sought recognition," said Jets owners Woody Johnson. "He exemplifies the very best of the NFL and will now receive the highest admiration, an honor that he very much deserves."

Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum also released a statement after Martin was elected.

"Curtis Martin's work ethic, durability and ability to consistently play at such a high level are the hallmarks of his career and appropriately recognized by his selection to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I have never come across a player who has been more dedicated to the team and doing his job," Tannenbaum said. "Curtis' tremendous production on the field, regardless of how outstanding it was, pales in comparison to the man he is. An individual of unparalleled integrity, he treats everyone who crosses his path with honesty, kindness and respect and serves as a shining example of how professional athletes should carry themselves on and off the field."

The Board of Selectors narrowed down the 15 modern day finalists to 10, then five, then the 44-member panel voted either 'yes' or 'no' on whether they should make the Hall of Fame. Needing an 80 percent 'yes' vote, Martin was voted in, along with Jack Butler, Cortez Kennedy, Willie Roaf, Chris Doleman and Dermontti Dawson.

Former coach of both the Jets and Giants, Bill Parcells, was one of the final 10 finalists, but didn't make the final five.

Here are some of Martin's career accomplishments:

  • Five-time Pro Bowler
  • Ten 1,000-yard rushing seasons
  • 14,101 career rushing yards, fourth all-time
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Pro Football Hall Of Fame 2012 Finalists: Bill Parcells, Curtis Martin Make List

The complete list of 26 modern-era semifinalists is as follows:Former Jets running back Curtis Martin is a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the second consecutive season after not making it a first-ballot Hall of Famer during his first year of eligibility. Waiting an extra year may be a blessing in disguise for Martin, because former coach – Bill Parcells –and Martin's choice to present him into the Hall of Fame is also eligible for induction in 2012 – his first year of eligibility.

Parcells coached Martin both with the Jets and New England Patriots. Parcells also spent some time with ESPN and the Dallas Cowboys, which was his last coaching stop. Unfortunately, he sort of ended with an anti-Michael Jordan moment with the Cowboys, as his lasting memory is a playoff loss following the Tony Romo bobbled snap.

The complete list of 15 modern-era semifinalists is as follows:

Jerome Bettis - Running Back - 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers

Tim Brown - Wide Receiver/Kick Returner - 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cris Carter - Wide Receiver - 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins

Dermontti Dawson - Center - 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers

Edward DeBartolo, Jr. - Owner - 1977-2000 San Francisco 49ers

Chris Doleman - Defensive End/Linebacker - 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-98 San Francisco 49ers

Kevin Greene - Linebacker/Defensive End - 1985-1992 Los Angeles Rams, 1993-95 Pittsburgh Steelers, 1996, 1998-99 Carolina Panthers, 1997 San Francisco 49ers

Charles Haley - Defensive End/Linebacker - 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys

Cortez Kennedy - Defensive Tackle - 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks

Curtis Martin - Running Back - 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets

Bill Parcells - Coach - 1983-1990 New York Giants, 1993-96 New England Patriots, 1997-99 New York Jets, 2003-06 Dallas Cowboys

Andre Reed - Wide Receiver - 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins

Willie Roaf - Tackle - 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs

Will Shields - Guard - 1993-2006 Kansas City Chiefs

Aeneas Williams - Cornerback/Safety - 1991-2000 Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals, 2001-04 St. Louis Rams

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