The College Football Hall of Fame announced its 2021 class on Monday, and two of its members played for the Bengals in their professional careers.
Arizona State defensive back David Fulcher and USC quarterback Carson Palmer will be immortalized in Atlanta.
Fulcher played for the Sun Devils from 1982-1985. The Bengals drafted him in 1986 in the third round with the 78th overall pick, and proved to be quite the steal.
In 1986, Fulcher was a member of the NFL All-Rookie Team. He went on to play in three straight Pro Bowls from 1988-1990. Fulcher’s best season was in 1989, when he had eight interceptions and four fumble recoveries. He was named a First-Team All-Pro at safety that season.
Fulcher played for the Bengals from 1986 to 1992. After seven years with the Bengals, he played one last season with the Raiders.
Over his seven year career, Fulcher intercepted 31 passes, which is still third all-time in Bengals history.
Palmer was a more dominant player in college than Fulcher, and was probably an easier pick for the Hall of Fame.
Palmer played for the Trojans from 1998-2002. He won the Heisman Trophy in 2002 after leading the Pac-10 in every statistical passing category. When Palmer left, he was the record holder for career passing yards and passing touchdowns.
The Bengals picked Palmer first overall in 2003, and most Bengals fans can remember the story from there. He put together a great season in 2005, which ended in a devastating knee injury against the Steelers in the playoffs. As good as he was for the Bengals, he grew to dislike the franchise, so he retired after seven years in Cincinnati.
Like Fulcher, Palmer played for the Raiders after seven years with the Bengals. Unlike Fulcher, Palmer went on to have success after leaving Cincinnati, most notably in 2015 when he went to the Pro Bowl after leading the Cardinals to a 13-3 record. He retired after the 2017 season.
In seven years with the Bengals, Palmer threw for 22,694 yards, 154 touchdowns, and 100 interceptions.