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Although his chances of getting elected seemed to be running out, Andre Reed received enough votes to reach the Hall of Fame in his eighth year as a finalist.
The longtime Buffalo Bills receiver was a big part of the team's success in the early 1990s, going to four straight Super Bowls from 1990-93. His 27 receptions in the Super Bowl rank second all time.
Michael Irvin commented on Reed's career before Saturday's announcement in The Morning Call:
"It's tough for a wide receiver to get in, but it should not be so tough for Andre Reed," Irvin said this week during Super Bowl Media Day in Newark, N.J. "It's ridiculous. Andre Reed's receptions led to four straight Super Bowls for his team. These were all meaningful, direct receptions.
"Don't tell me about a guy who has 1,200 or 1,300 receptions, but they were never on winning teams. I don't want to hear about that. They were superfluous plays, plays made when it didn't count. Andre Reed made plays when it counted. I hope it's his time. He deserves it."
Reed ended his career with the Washington Redskins and retired after the 2000 season, at the time ranking third in NFL history with 951 receptions, trailing only Hall of Famers Jerry Rice and Cris Carter.
Besides just his numbers, Reed dazzled fans with his ability to make plays after the catch, often turning short routes into long touchdowns. His exciting style of play helped him reach seven straight Pro Bowls from 1988-94.
Although a few players have passed him in the record books in recent years, he still distinguished himself in his prime as one of the best ever at his position.