The passing of Bengals legend Ken Riley is another sobering reminder that the Pro Football Hall of Fame still doesn’t include one of the NFL’s greatest defensive backs in its history.
Despite being fifth all-time in interceptions, Riley never got the nod from Canton. Along with his former teammate Ken Anderson, Riley is one of the best players in pro football history without a bronze bust in the Hall of Fame.
Former tackle Willie Anderson argued that the Bengals should honor Riley, among other Bengals legends, in their own way.
According to @ChickLudwig 53 @Bengals have passed away ! Mr Brown Please before you leave us We want this to be a part of your Legacy with us! We all know Uvalue History &I know about the things you’ve done for your players behind the scene who needed help! This would be huge!— Willie Anderson (@BigWillie7179) June 8, 2020
Anderson argues that the Bengals should have a way to honor the history of the franchise and those who were a part of it. The Bengals don’t currently have a ring of honor or a hall of fame like many other franchises.
The closest thing they have took place in 2017 when the Bengals played their 50th season. They honored some former players during a ceremony at halftime, but nothing more formal than that has been established.
Yes the 50 greatest player and Fantennial events were 1st class by the Bengals . But we have to do Events when the rest of the NFL is not doing events. The @steelers are known for this . Monday night football halftime they’re inducting someone into Steelers HOF . @Ravens do too!— Willie Anderson (@BigWillie7179) June 8, 2020
The Bengals have about 30 more years of history than the Ravens, so if they have a hall of fame, the Bengals can get one too.
If the Pro Football Hall of Fame refuses to honor Bengals legends, then the Bengals should do it themselves. Anthony Muñoz is the only player in the Hall of Fame that was primarily a Bengal despite some great players passing through Cincinnati.
Ken Riley, Willie Anderson, and Ken Anderson should be in the inaugural class if the Bengals instituted anything like what Big Willie is suggesting.