15 NFL seasons, 227 games played, 128 sacks (plus 8 unofficial in 1981), 8 interceptions, 28 defensive fumble recoveries, 6 time Pro-Bowler, 5 All Pro team selections, 6 seasons with 10 or more sacks, and 1 Superbowl victory. Sound like a Hall of Fame NFL career? Apparently the Hall of Fame Selection Board feels differently. It is the opinion of these petitioners that Rickey Jackson is being unfairly penalized for playing in one of the smallest markets in the NFL and one of the historically most underperforming NFL franchises, the New Orleans Saints. The decreased exposure during his career has left him on the outside of the Hall Of Fame looking in. Jackson has been on the official ballot for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the past 9 years, but has never been voted a finalist. He was a cornerstone of the Saints' famed "Dome Patrol" linebacking corp, which the NFL Network ranked as #1 in NFL history. His 28 defensive fumble recoveries rank 2nd in NFL history behind only Jim Marshall's 29 of the Cleveland Brown's and Minnesota Vikings. His 128 official sacks ranks 10th all-time, 28 sacks ahead of 2008 inductee Andre Tippet by comparison, who played in the same era as Rickey Jackson. He missed only 4 games in his illustrious career, 2 of those due to an auto accident, which left him with a wired jaw. He played the remainder of that season with his jawed wired shut while finishing with 7.5 sacks.
Whether you're a Saints fan or not, if you are a football fan with a sense of football history, what it means to be a good football player, and what it is to be a Hall of Fame player, please show your support for Rickey Jackson by adding your signature to this petition.
We, the undersigned, encourage you, the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Board of Selectors, to select Rickey Jackson to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. After 9 years of waiting, we feel you have overlooked one of the premier players at his position and of his era in the National Football League. We ask that you compare his statistics to those of Lawerence Taylor and Andre Tippet, players in the Hall of Fame who played during the same time frame. We are not saying these players do not deserve their Hall of fame status, they truly do, we are only stating that Rickey Jackson does as well.
We thank you for taking the time to consider our petition and the opinions contained within. We, as NFL fans, have the upmost confidence that you will move forward with the process of electing Rickey Jackson, #57, to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
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