NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Sunday, February 7, 2016, 12:22 PM
It seems Terrell Owens’ me-first approach may have cost him entry into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in his first year on the ballot.
Terrell Owens may “love me some me,” but the voters for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, clearly, do not.
Owens was shut out of the Hall of Fame in his first try Saturday night while the doors of Canton swung open for Marvin Harrison in the Colts receiver’s third time on the ballot.
Owens’ candidacy was so divisive that during the cutdown from 15 to 10 players, voters reportedly debated over him for 43 minutes before deciding that he wasn’t one of the 10 best candidates on the list.
Since Hall of Fame voters famously — or infamously — only consider what a player did on the field while mulling over their merits, it seems like Owens’ push-ups, pom-poms and Sharpies were used as marks against him.
“Unfortunately I did not make it,” Owens wrote on Twitter. “CONGRATS to all the 2016 HOF CLASS. Thanks to ALL MY FANS for ur unwavering love & support. #ONLYGODCANJUDGEME”
Owens then retweeted many fans and media people who were decrying his shutout as a joke.
While his antics may have played a role in Saturday’s vote — by a panel of 46 sportswriters — the so-called receiver bias also appears to be at play.
Only five wide receivers have ever reached Hall of Fame status in their first year on the ballot, and none have gotten in on the first try since Jerry Rice in 2010. Cris Carter waited six years, Michael Irvin, like Harrison, got in on the third try.
So, did the Pro Football Hall of Fame voters mess up by putting Harrison in ahead of Owens simply because he’s waited longer than Owens?
Marvin Harrison had the good fortune of playing with a Hall of Fame quarterback in Peyton Manning while they both were in their prime years.
Here’s a glimpse at their careers:
13 seasons with the Colts
128 touchdowns (fifth all-time)
14,580 yards (seventh all-time)
1,102 catches (fourth all-time)
Eight 1,000-yard seasons
One season leading the NFL in touchdown receptions
Two seasons leading the NFL in receptions
Three-time first-team All-Pro
15 seasons with the 49ers, Eagles, Cowboys, Bills and Bengals
153 touchdowns (third all-time)
15,934 yards (second all-time)
1,078 catches (sixth all-time)
Nine 1,000 yard seasons
Three seasons leading the NFL in touchdown receptions
Five-time first-team All-Pro