Folks, we made it. Football is back.
And I don’t wanna hear it, either, so save your nonsense.
I don’t care that it’s “just the Hall of Fame Game” and that we probably won’t know one player on the field tonight and some of these guys won’t be on a team in a few weeks.
I don’t care that it’s a glorified flag football game, doesn’t mean a single thing in terms of a team’s overall outlook, and literally the only objective is to get out healthy.
Football is back. The King is back. Ridiculous in-game live betting is BACK (yep, you can gamble on this game).
The offseason is officially over. Tonight, the Jacksonville Jaguars and Las Vegas Raiders usher us into the most glorious time of year, and we’re gonna celebrate the heck out of it!
That’s right … we have the five top plays from the Hall of Fame Game over the last 20 years locked and loaded for you! Let’s dive in.
Jeremy Shockey bulldozes defender in Giants debut
For those of you not old enough to remember, Jeremy Shockey was Gronk before Gronk was Gronk.
Sorry, it had to be said.
Shockey came into the league with a ton of hype coming from the University of Miami’s absolutely loaded 2001 team, and he didn’t disappoint.
This hit was certainly a sign of things to come for the four-time Pro Bowler and two-time Super Bowl champ.
Clarence LeBlanc returns interception 99 yards in 2002 Hall Of Fame Game
Bet you didn’t think you’d get a Clarence LeBlanc reference today, but here we are.
LeBlanc spoiled the Houston Texans’ franchise debut back in ’02, sealing the Giants’ HOF game win with a 99-yard pick-6 with just under two minutes left.
Along with Shockey’s brutal hit, this game also featured rookie David Carr throwing a touchdown pass for the Texans, and future Bachelor host (yep, who would’ve thought) Jesse Palmer throwing for 247 yards and two TDs for the Giants.
Sean Taylor introduces himself to the NFL
Perhaps Taylor’s most famous highlight came when he absolutely destroyed punter Brian Moorman during the 2006 Pro Bowl Game, but people often forget he was a walking highlight reel from Day 1.
Making his NFL debut in the ’04 HOF game against the Broncos, Taylor – Washington’s first-round pick – picked off fellow rookie Matt Mauck twice, the second of which turning into a pick-6.
This game also featured the return of Joe Gibbs to the Washington sidelines for the first time in 12 years and a game-winning field goal.
Nothing says drama like a game-winner in the Hall Of Fame Game!
Cowboys LB DeVonte Holloman gets Hall Of Fame Game pick-6
Yes, this is just another pick-6, so why does it make the list?
Well, for one, because I said so. But, more importantly, because this 2013 game between the Cowboys and Dolphins was the last time the HOF game was held on Aug. 4.
I know – it’s a stretch. I’m really trying here.
Anyways, here’s Holloman picking off Matt Moore and racing back for a Dallas score.
Tennessee Titans run the perfect fake punt in iconic Hall Of Fame Game moment
You didn’t think I’d forget about the Hall Of Fame Game moment, did you?
The Titans called the perfect fake punt 13 years ago, and, for some reason, they decided to unleash it in the most meaningless game of the season.
Regardless, everything about this play is perfect … from the Oilers throwbacks to a punter racing 40 yards untouched for a score, to Al Michaels calling a preseason game, it was all perfection.
Happy Hall Of Fame Game Day, folks! Football is BACK.