NFL speed trailblazer "Bullet" Bob Hayes will finally get his due as he is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this weekend
The Pro Football Hall of Fame inductions that are held every year in Canton, OH are special for a number of reasons. Each year, the small town in middle America welcomes the National Football League’s best, making “The Place Where Football Legends Come to Rest” feel alive.
Of course, every year's induction class is special. This year’s group is no different, with names like Bruce Smith, Rod Woodson, Derrick Thomas, Randall McDaniel, and Ralph Wilson Jr.
The crown jewel of this year’s Hall of Fame induction class, in my opinion, will be a player who truly revolutionalized the game of football forever.
Ever wonder why football announcers are always enamored with talking about “world class speed,” and why NFL scouts are just as obsessed each year about potential draft picks forty-yard dash times at the NFL Combine?
The NFL's obsession with speed has gotten so crazy over the years that teams were reportedly contacting current Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt about football, even though the Jamaican had never played the game.
The NFL's “need for speed” can be directly attributed to an athlete named Robert Lee Hayes, who was affectionately known as “Bullet Bob” during his heyday with the Dallas Cowboys from 1965 to 1974.
“This guy revolutionized the passing game and forced them to come up with the zone defense, just like Wilt Chamberlain forced them to change certain rules in basketball,” Hall of Fame defensive back and former teammate Herb Adderley said.
Hayes arrived on the pro football scene in 1965 and was already a worldwide star after achieving Olympic glory at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. The “World’s Fastest Man” won a gold medal in the 100 meter dash.