It’s been a little hard to get inspired lately. I mean, how many times can you write “this stupid lockout is driving me crazy and I’d like to knock Roger Goodell and De Smith’s heads together”? It’s been enough to do that on Twitter occasionally, I don’t feel the need to waste blog space.

Recently, though, I’ve been reminded again of an injustice that even frequent outbursts towards the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Twitter account just don’t quell.

Fact: It’s absolute bullshit that Jerry Kramer isn’t in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Side note: When I would show the picture below to anyone, taken in December 2007, I always said “The only thing that would have been better is if Jerry Kramer had been on the other side of me.” I meant it. Jerry and Fuzzy in a picture with me? Amazing.

As Alicia Kramer says (Twitter handle @JerryKramer4HOF), her Dad was nominated in “1974,’75,’76,’78,’79,’80,’81,’84,’87, and ’97. How many times can a person be a nominated?” I don’t know if that’s a record times to be nominated without making it in, but it’s a lot. Worse yet, it’s been how long since he’s been nominated?

It’s too many times over too many years for a player who by all accounts was a stellar guard, ahem, player – and a reason the Packers dominated much of the 60′s. The Ice Bowl alone does not a player make, but it certainly was a capstone to a great career (though he did play after that). Not only did Kramer play guard at a high level, but he was the placekicker for the Packers too for a time, and did pretty well at that as well.

So there’s his play. That’s one thing. And? The man has been a superb ambassador for football. When Instant Replay came out, it seemed to me that it redefined sports journalism because of its insight (insider view) and honesty. Sure, I assume that if I listened to the tapes made for the book (oh, how I wish I could listen to those tapes) that there was judicious editing so that readers didn’t get quite the whole feel of a NFL locker room, but enough got through that I picked up on the charm right away at age 7, when my Dad gave it to me; additionally my Dad didn’t have to worry I was going to learn a whole new (bad) vocabulary by reading it. Yes, a lot of what Jerry has written in his other books and spoken about has been Packers related. But his words and sentiments apply to many players and teams in the NFL and they show the type of good people that make up the heart of organizations that breed fan loyalty and love.

In addition, Kramer has been an advocate for some time now for retired players, those from another era, who find themselves suffering from health and financially related problems caused at least in part by the physical rigors and lack of financial reward or stability that was the old NFL. (Maybe it’s the new NFL too, for some players. But I digress.)

I know I’m prejudiced, because he’s from Idaho. I’m not the first person who has brought this up. And, yes, he was my father’s favorite Packer. (And mine, tied with Korey Hall.)

But in anyone’s book this omission from the halls of football royalty should be a travesty. I don’t think I exaggerate when I say he’s a national, Idaho and Green Bay Packer treasure. I would love to be able to see Jerry get to see himself enshrined in Canton during his lifetime.

As Kevin Greene said in the Super Bowl to CM3, “It is your time.” It’s time for Gerald Louis Kramer to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Please, Packer Nation, help Alicia to do whatever necessary to make it happen.

 

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  • Mark

    I think it’s also bullshit Dave Robinson isn’t in either.

  • Colleen

    Agreed. Totally.

  • http://www.pocketdoppler.com BigSnakeMan

    Unfortunately, and certainly unfairly, I believe Kramer is paying the price for having so many of his teammates already inducted. There seems to be a reluctance on the part of the HOF to honor any more players from that team. I’m afraid that if it hasn’t happened by now that it never will. And that would be a shame.

  • http://www.pocketdoppler.com Ceallaigh

    Jerry was everywhere at the Superbowl. He was getting out of a car when I was in line for the very dignfied porta-potty. Figured it wasn’t a good time to say, “Hi Jerry!” But, hey, it was Jerry Kramer, and even with a full bladder, I had the warm fuzzy of seeing him.

    But Jerry made the entire weekend for my friend Dave, who I was never able to meet up with in Dallas and only heard the story after the fact. Dave is 35, used to play guard himself at one of the UW schools. Jerry is his absolute favorite player. He has picture of Jerry from his playing years proudly on his office wall next to the framed picture of Lambeau. He has a picture of that famous play in the Ice Bowl (that would not have been possible with out Jerry’s abilities)

    Anyhow, Dave went to the Super Bowl. He wore his Kramer jersey to the game, and was floating high riding that amazing feeling that the Packers had just won and was leaving the stadium. As he was heading out with his friend, Jerry walked up to him and said, “Nice jersey, kid.”

    It made Dave’s entire life! Now in addition to all his packer stuff on his office wall is a photo of Jerry and him grinning ear to ear.

    Hell yes, Jerry Kramer needs to go to Canton.

  • someyahoo

    According to an NFL Network “Top 10″ show, Jerry Kramer is the most deserving player currently not in the Hall of Fame.

    Jerry Kramer has been a HOF finalist 10 times, which I believe is the most of anyone not in the Hall of Fame.

    Jerry Kramer is a 7-time All-Pro. A consensus All-Pro 3 times.

    Jerry Kramer was a member of the NFL’s 50th Anniversary team. He was the only guard named to the team. He is the only player named to the team who is not in the HOF.

    There are only 5 other players who were finalists for the HOF 10 or more times. All of those players are in the HOF. 2 of these 5 players also played for Coach Lombardi. So, there appears to be a kind of “Lombardi backlash effect”.

    From KC Joyner’s book “Blindsided” (where some of this information came):
    The writers have given Kramer every other honor they have at their disposal. Holding him out of the Hall at this point just doesn’t seem right.

  • Anita

    Right on!! And great story, Kelly. “Nice jersey, kid.” LMAO.

    It’s downright criminal that he is not in the Hall, but I do think that the reason is more, as BSM said, the reluctance to have TOO MANY of Lombardi’s Packers inducted, not because of any weakness in Kramer’s game, or any flaw in his character. It’s still the biggest line of bullshit I’ve ever heard.

    I’m hoping that the success of the HBO documentary, “Lombardi,” shown for several months this winter, where Jerry Kramer was one of the main voices, will stir up some interest. I mean, can you imagine if Vince were alive? I doubt Kramer would be excluded if the Coach had anything to say about it. The most iconic play of the 1960′s Packer dynasty would not have happened if Kramer didn’t see, and then exploit, the weakness of Jethro Pugh.

  • BrewTownBoozer

    Agreed. I think it will eventually happen. Like BSM said, he is paying the price of having too many HOF teammates. Unfortunately, I think Kramer is going to get his award posthumously, after everyone realizes how good he actually was.

    Hopefully blogs just like this will stay vigilant until the goal is accomplished. Well Done.

  • Anita

    I just hope it doesn’t become a Ron Santo situation. He passed away last year never getting to realize his dream of being inducted into the Baseball HOF. Kramer needs to go in while he can still get up on the podium and tell everyone that “It’s about damn time.”

  • foundinidaho

    Well, everyone, since we feel so strongly about this, how DO we help Alicia get this done? Bombard writers? Start a Facebook page? Keep tweeting the HOF and chewing them out? I’m open to ideas.

  • http://facebook mitch dennis

    colleen your da would have love that artical good onya mate

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