Marvin Harrison was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame Saturday evening. He began his speech with thanks to the fans that supported him even when times got tough.
“They never booed me, they never said anything negative. They always said don’t worry about it Marvin, You’ll get the next one,” Marvin told the crowd that had gathered in Canton Saturday night. He told the fans that he wasn’t used to that being from Philadelphia. “If you got the coin toss wrong, they wanted you to be traded the next day,” Harrison said
After thanking the fans, Harrison used his time to make sure and thank his teammates that made the night possible.
He started by speaking to Peyton Manning who, with Harrison, combined to become one of the most potent touchdown scoring duos in the NFL. In fact, they became the most potent quarterback-receiver tandem when they combined for over 86 touchdown passes surpassing the record previously held by Steve Young and Jerry Rice.
Harrison was known as a tough guy and a hard worker. He noted in his speech that the only arguments he had with his coaches would be when he would come out. “I wasn’t coming out of a game, and I wasn’t coming out of practice,” Harrison said.
He thanked Jim Mora, who was known as a grinder of a coach, for being one of his best friends. Mora had been impressed by Harrison’s work ethic saying that he almost never saw someone that worked as hard as Harrison.
There was a heartfelt moment when he spoke about his grandmother. He credits her for giving him his toughness and for making him the man that he became.
He spoke about his life after football. He said that coaching his two sons and being able to raise them made his decision to retire a no brainer.
Along those same lines he thanked his final head coach for teaching him lessons that he would be able to use once he did retire. He said that the most important lesson that Tony Dungy taught him was how to be a father.
He thanked Bill Polian who drafted him, and would refer to him as a Hall of Famer early in his career. Setting the stage for what would eventually become true.
It took Harrison three years of eligibility to finally be inducted into the Hall of Fame. After being named to the list of inductees he got into a small rift with Terrell Owens who many feel was snubbed by the voters.
Marvin Harrison was a big part of the success that came to the city of Indianapolis. The Manning-Harrison combination was a key cog to the Colts Superbowl victory in 2006. He would retire just two years after that Superbowl victory.
Harrison spent his entire NFL career with the Colts. Over his 12 years in Indianapolis he amassed over 1,100 receptions, 14,000 yards and 128 touchdowns. He helped revolutionize the wide receiver position in the NFL. He was named to eight Pro Bowls and six All-Pro teams.