One of my favorite things about Super Bowl week outside of the coverage along with the game is learning who will be going to their new team for life. The Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Legendary wide receiver Cris Carter has often referred to this as “football heaven”. I look at all the names I grew up watching who have become owners of the infamous gold jacket given to the inductees. Brett Favre, Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Marvin Harrison, and Tony Gonzalez to name a few offensive players. The defense also has its fair share as well. Brian Urlacher, Ray Lewis, Brian Dawkins are some who are enshrined. Another defensive star is set to join the club. Troy Polamalu is officially a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

Troy is one of the most exciting football players I’ve ever seen play the game. When facing the Pittsburgh Steelers, the defense always got attention. You just never knew what number 43 was going to do. For years, former Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau did many things to utilize the strengths of Troy. I remember an interception of his back in the 2008 AFC playoffs against the Chargers. Philip Rivers got the ball Vincent Jackson who dropped it.  Number 43 was there to make a one-handed interception. He’d come in at the last minute and literally jump over the line of scrimmage to make the stop. Troy was so instinctive as a football player. You could just never get a feel for what he was going to do, but he was always near the football.

Ben Roethlisberger stated that he’s lucky to be a teammate of his, not an opponent. Troy is one of the greatest all-around safeties I’ve had the pleasure of watching. He won two Super Bowls in his career. He’s also a member of the College Football Hall of Fame. Now, he’ll be in Canton forever. Last year, Ed Reed went in. Troy follows him a year later.


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