Dr. Z takes a look at the prospects for next year's Hall of Fame candidates.
Not that the class of '07 is composed of stiffs. They're good players, but going down the list, the strongest candidates I can find - [tackle Bruce] Matthews, QB Randall Cunningham, guards Randall McDaniel and Steve Wisniewski, safety LeRoy Butler, tackle Erik Williams -- are not, to my mind, Hall of Famers, at least compared with the people who have lost out in recent years.
The Big "E" is on the list, but I have to agree, he won't get in. He was never the same player after the car wreck.
But Dr. Z has another Cowboy in mind for the Hall of Fame.
My candidate No. 2 is someone I've pushed as a modern and now as a senior: Cliff Harris, the Dallas free safety. There are two kinds of free safeties. First, those whom I call range-safeties, Willie Wood of the Lombardi Packers for instance, and Paul Krause of the Vikings, people who covered a lot of ground, whose interceptions were high. Then there are killer-safeties, tops among them the Raiders' Jack Tatum, whom Al Davis termed "an obstructionist." No DB ever hit harder, but he didn't have the great coverage skills. Harris was a killer-safety type who could cover. He started as an NFL cornerback. He was probably the best combination of killer-safety and range-safety who ever played.
The DMN has an interview with former safety Michael Downs.
Inside linebackers coach Vincent Brown gets some ink on the Cowboys website.