Redskins fans are hoping that the second time's a charm when it comes to Joe Jacoby making it into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Jacoby is one of 15 Modern-Era Finalists for the Hall of Fame's 2017 class. Jacoby fell short of enshrinement last year, but the hope is that this year Jacoby gets the call that he so richly deserves.
Jacoby wouldn't mind a bit of outside help and influence to make it into the Hall of Fame, and he's getting just that, courtesy of two Redskins fans, who penned a fantastic letter on his behalf.
The letter – aptly titled "The Ultimate Player – Joe Jacoby" – lays out the highlights of Jacoby's stellar 13-year NFL career, and includes some quotes from current Hall of Famers, who endorse Jacoby's entrance into Canton.
The Ultimate Player – Joe Jacoby
For the Pro Football Hall of Fame
By Dan Hines & M. Mayne
Each summer, every football player starts the annual process of preparing to someday play in and win the ultimate football game – the Super Bowl. Over his 13-season NFL career, Joe Jacoby started in four Super Bowls, at two different positions (three at left offensive tackle, one at right tackle). His team won three of those Super Bowls with three different quarterbacks. Joe was a large part of the heart and soul (both on the field and in the locker room) of one of the best offensive lines in the history of the NFL.
Starting as a 22-year-old, long-shot, undrafted free-agent rookie in 1981, his head coach, Joe Gibbs, thought he was a defensive lineman. Coach Joe Bugel corrected that quickly: "…we put him at left tackle for one reason - to match up against Lawrence Taylor." And the rest is history. If selected to go to Canton, Joe would be the 15th free agent enshrined in the Hall of Fame. The Redskins would then be only the fifth team with two offensive linemen in the Hall.
Joe is the prototype of the modern-day power offensive left tackle: big, strong, and quick enough to protect the quarterback's blind-side against the top-speed pass rushers, and yet agile and fast enough to lead runs around the right end. Joe set the standard for the power-tackle play.
During his 13 years in the NFL, Joe played twice a season against Lawrence Taylor, Randy White, Harry Carson, Charles Haley, Leonard Marshall, Carl Banks, Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Harvey Martin, Jerome Brown and Clyde Simmons. In playoff runs, Joe played against the likes of Chris Dolman, Howie Long, Cortez Kennedy, Bruce Smith, Richard Dent, Dan Hampton, John Randle, Lee Roy Selmon and Derrick Thomas.
Here are some quotes on Joe:
Lawrence Taylor (HOF): "Jacoby was one of the lineman that always gave me trouble, because he was so big, and so quick and so long; the hardest thing for me to deal with. A very tough player, we had such great battles. For a bigger guy, he was able to move, so although I was more athletic, he could really hold his own. The HOGS were all excellent players, but certainly Joe and Russ (Grimm, HOF-2010) were the anchors of that line. To do it, for as long as he did, on such a high level, it's a surprise to me that he's not in Canton already."
Randy White (HOF): "Joe blocked down on me a number of times and he was like a damn tank. I know that Harvey Martin had the utmost respect for Joe. The Redskins had a heck of an offensive line, but Grimm and Jacoby were the anchors. I think Joe should be in the Hall of Fame. If I had a vote, I'd vote for him."
Coach Bill Parcells (HOF): "Joe was certainly up there among the best. Joe had a lot of toughness and he was a pretty smart player. We had difficulty fooling him. There were some very, very good speed rushers back then and Joe did well against them. He was pretty good in the running game, too. Joe was a very, very critical part in the championships (the Redskins) won."
Russ Grimm (HOF): "The man played left tackle in a right-handed stance…unheard of in today's game, but still had the quickness and strength to dominate the position. Durability, toughness and the heart of a champion. Loved playing beside him, trusted him as a friend and will always be like a brother. He deserves to be in the Hall."
Coach Joe Gibbs (HOF): "I really feel in my heart that this guy belongs in the Hall of Fame. He was one of our mainstays in one of the best offensive lines to ever play. Joe went to four Super Bowls. He's a leader. He meant a lot to our football team. He played one of the hardest positions in football - left tackle - and he played against some of the best people in football. Now I'm hoping that this guy has all the credentials and everything that it takes to be in the Hall of Fame. I just hope that we're closer now, and we get it done."
Joe is a modern-day era player who should be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The history and story of the NFL, the Washington Redskins, the HOGS, and the position of offensive tackle cannot be written or told without including the standard bearer, Joe Jacoby.