On a day when I would like to give Jerry Jones credit for making a good call by placing Drew Pearson in the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor, I find myself instead a little miffed that it took him so long to do so.
As the sole Keeper of the Keys to this highest honor bestowed by the team on any of its players and coaches, Jones has contributed to the NFL Hall of Fame committee’s oversight of Pearson by not bestowing upon the man the credit he deserved years ago.
By today’s standards, Drew Pearson’s numbers were not flashy. But by the standards of the 1970s—the era in which he played—they were outstanding.
So much so that he was named to the NFL’s All-Decade team for the 1970s. Pearson had 489 receptions in his career, which is enough to rank him second all-time in Cowboy history. He also scored 48 touchdowns, good for third in team history, and amassed 7,822 yards, also good for third in franchise history.
Pearson perfected the sideline catch. Few have ever caught passes while dragging that second foot as well as he did. He was the recipient of Staubach’s famed Hail Mary pass in the 1975 playoff game against the Minnesota Vikings.
Back in January, during Super Bowl week, Drew’s quarterback, Roger Staubach, the greatest Cowboy of them all, was quoted as saying, “Drew Pearson is a Ring of Honor player if there ever was a Ring of Honor player and Jerry has told me that too. I’m hoping whenever we continue the Ring of Honor … that Drew will be right there. I would be surprised if he wasn’t.”
Tim McMahon of ESPNDallas.com offers the theory that it was pressure from Roger Staubach that finally prompted Jerry Jones to pull the trigger and place Pearson into the Ring of Honor. He mentions that Jerry owes Staubach a huge debt of gratitude for heading up the effort to land the 2011 Super Bowl in Arlington.
MacMahon writes, “Pearson has butted heads with Jerry throughout the years, whether it’s been because of business disagreements or the blunt criticism of the Cowboys that makes the Original 88 such a great fit on ESPN 103.3’s postgame coverage. If it takes Jerry scratching the back of a business partner to finally put Pearson in the Hall of Fame, so be it.”
Amen, Tim. Amen.
Now, let’s get to work on Darren Woodson. He is my next choice for the Ring of Honor.
Who is yours?