Ken Stabler Does Not Belong in the Hall of Fame: Not Even Close

Ryan MichaelSenior Writer IIIAugust 9, 2009

As I'm watching the NFL Network's countdown of the top 10 players not inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, I couldn't help but passionately disagree with the notion that Ken Stabler had been snubbed from induction into the Hall of Fame.

While I realize that many people possess different criteria, I believe that we would all agree that a Hall of Famer should have played at a very high level for an extended period of time.

Did Ken Stabler do that?

You tell me after looking at his career production.

Ken Stabler (1970-1984):
2,270 of 3,793 for 27,938 yards, 194 touchdowns, 222 interceptions, 75.3 QB Rating.

The first thing that jumps out at me is the fact that he threw more interceptions than touchdowns.

For a player to be more consistent in turning the ball over than putting points on the board is not a sign of greatness.

We are talking about a different era but at the same time, we're not talking about the 1930's either. Throwing more interceptions than touchdowns was not the mark of a good (let alone great) season in the 1970's or 1980's.

But beyond the career totals, I think that it is important to look at individual seasons to get a gage as to how often Stabler actually performed at a high level.

His production can be found right here…

If you look at his career, 1973, 1974, 1976, and 1979 appear to be his only above-average seasons.

1974 and 1976 appear to me to be his only arguably "great" seasons.

I would argue that Ken Stabler played at a Hall of Fame level in two of his 15 seasons in the National Football League.

That, to me, is not a Hall of Fame body of work. Not even close.

Many people might disagree, and would argue that the numbers aren't telling the entire story.

If that's the case, I would like for someone to detail how Ken Stabler’s performance during any season (excluding 1974 & 1976) was not only exceptional, but performance of a Hall of Fame caliber.  

The reason why many people feel that Ken Stabler belongs in the Hall of Fame is because the Oakland Raiders were one of the most memorable franchises during the 1970's and Stabler himself was their quarterback.

He compiled a 96-49-1 record as a starter in the NFL so people associate the success of the Oakland Raiders' franchise with the man who played the quarterback position.

It's an understandable train of thought, but is nevertheless not an accurate reflection of the individual contributions of Ken Stabler himself.

So has Ken Stabler been snubbed from an induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame?

In my view, not even close.