SAN FRANCISCO - The Pro Football Hall of Fame Board of Selectors meets Saturday here at the George Moscone Convention Center to elect the Class of 2016 and the family of the late Ken Stabler is expected to get the call.
Like Bengals all-time leading passer Ken Anderson, Stabler, the Raiders Super Bowl quarterback, comes from the pool of senior candidates whose careers ended more than 25 years ago. Stabler and Anderson were peers and now that it looks like Stabler is in, Anderson's left tackle thinks he needs to join him in Canton.
"One of the most accurate (and) the longevity," said Bengals Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz, ticking off Anderson's credentials Tuesday at an NFL Experience event.
While Stabler has a Super Bowl ring, Anderson has four NFL passing titles and two of them were in an era when defensive backs were allowed to maul Anderson's top guns, like four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Isaac Curtis.
"It has to carry some weight when as a defensive back I was on you, mugging you the entire time compared to I can't hit you (now) after five (yards)," Munoz said. "You are going to throw for 5,000 yards, you better if you are a top guy. He had (Steelers defensive backs) Mel Blount and Donnie Shell mugging Isaac and still throwing for a million yards."
Stabler's looming election is a double-edged sword for Anderson. His numbers in 16 seasons from 1971-86 are better than what Stabler did from 1970-85 and make the debate easier. But the senior committee likes to spread out positions, so it's going to be a couple of years before another senior quarterback gets the call.
Munoz figures if the Bengals had won Anderson's one Super Bowl start, a 26-21 loss to the 49ers, Anderson would have been in the Hall of Fame. But he thinks Hall voters put too much of a premium on winning a title.
"For a quarterback, for his legacy to be based on rings, I laugh," Munoz said. "I just said it's like (Tom) Brady against (Peyton) Manning. As a player I'd be pretty ticked off. OK guys, I'll just stay out of it and let those two guys play against each other. The example I use is (John) Elway. Great career and wasn't until late when he got a few pieces of the puzzle. To me, one of the great quarterbacks of all time was Dan Marino. He's one guy I would say is in my top five as far as if I started a franchise, but he never got a ring."
EIFERT GOOD TO GO:
The Bengals got good news Tuesday on tight end Tyler Eifert less than 48 hours after he left his first Pro Bowl in a walking boot.
After being examined by Bengals foot specialist Jim Amis, the club said he suffered only a sprained foot and after proper rest it won't cause him to miss any off-season activities.
Eifert said he jammed his heel early in the fourth quarter of Sunday's Pro Bowl in Honolulu on a pass down the seam he nearly corralled for a 35-yard touchdown catch from quarterback Jameis Winston, but saw the ball squirt out of his hands as he went to the ground.
On the previous play he made his first Pro Bowl catch, an 11-yarder over the middle.