FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Jerry Rice could arguably be the easiest choice ever for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Even though his selection to the Class of 2010 was a formality Saturday, the enormity of the situation and the emotion involved was still felt by Rice.
Rice was speaking on stage with hosts Rich Eisen and Steve Young about his work ethic when the moment hit home.
“I think it came from my parents. What they instilled …” Rice said before being overcome by emotion.
While Rice fought back the tears, the several hundred people in the audience jumped in and applauded him. The moment was felt all across the room.
“I told him this would happen,” Young said.
Rice confirmed a question by Eisen that he was actually nervous for today.
“I never take anything for granted,” Rice said. “My parents, what they instilled in me, it was just hard work. Hard work and your appreciation for this game. And I love this game. I’m just so honored to be here, and be in front of all these legends, who made football the game it is today.”
— Frank Tadych