NFL Hall Of Fame Class Of 2011 Includes Shannon Sharpe, Deion Sanders, Marshall Faulk

Shannon Sharpe is now an NFL immortal after his Hall of Fame induction.

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Shannon Sharpe Gives Emotional Hall Of Fame Speech Centered On Grandmother

From the outset of his NFL Hall of Fame Speech, Shannon Sharpe told everyone that he couldn't fit his entire speech into an 8-10 minute span. "No chance," he said. Proud and excited of his NFL career, this was the "culmination" of that career.

Sharpe wanted everyone to know why he succeeded from such an obscure background: determination, dedication, discipline. He never listened to those who said he couldn't make it, because he believed he could do it.

Sharpe had a litany of thank yous to hand out. The first person he thanked was his remedial reading and Spanish teacher and then followed that with his high school teacher. He went on to single out Hall of Fame Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway before segueing to his family.  He apparently embarrassed his mother when he mentioned the white suits she bought for he and his brother Sterling.

Acknowledging his brother, Shannon said he was the only Hall of Famer who was the second-best football player in his family. Had a neck injury not ended Sterling's career, they could have been the first brothers elected into the Hall of Fame. "You are my hero, my father, my role model," Shannon said of Sterling.

Sharpe became emotional when he spoke about Mary Porter, his grandmother. His grandmother raised Shannon and his brothers and sisters. She laid a foundation in him to want to improve his life. "You need to walk 20 years of my life" to learn how much Sharpe wanted to leave his hometown.

It was a "five-alarm fire" inside of him to want to be the best and improve his lot in life. And he ignored people and hurt relationships along the way to reach this point in his life, but he wasn't here to apologize for it. He was able to give his family a life they never would have if not for his unrelenting drive to succeed.

He closed his speech with this: "I know my grandmother's proud. I know my family's proud."

Congratulations, Shannon Sharpe, you are an NFL immortal now!

Cross-posted at SB Nation.

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Shannon Sharpe Enters NFL Hall Of Fame After Prolific Career As Feared Tight End

Shannon Sharpe will be enshrined into the NFL Hall of Fame on Saturday as a member of the Class of 2011. The former Denver Broncos tight end retired as the career leader at his position in receptions, yards and touchdowns.

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John Elway, Floyd Little Headline Broncos NFL Hall Of Famers As Shannon Sharpe Enters Canton

When Shannon Sharpe's bust in unveiled on Saturday evening, the prolific tight end will become the sixth Denver Bronco to enter the NFL Hall of Fame. But that's by the Halls definition. If we consider only those who played the majority or at least a significant portion of their careers with the Broncos, that number is narrowed down to four. Those names are easy to recall: Sharpe, quarterback John Elway, offensive tackle Gary Zimmerman and running back Floyd Little.

(Willie Brown played the first four years of his career in Denver (63-66), but played for the Raiders until 1978. Tony Dorsett played for the Broncos in 1988 and then retired. And don't even include Jerry Rice, who never played a regular season down with the team).

John Elway was the first overall pick in the 1983 NFL and forced a trade to the Broncos after his selection by the Colts. After a rough start to his career, Elway led the Broncos to five Super Bowls, but he didn't find that winning touch there until his final two seasons, winning back-to-back Super Bowls to end a storied career. He won 148 regular season games, threw for 51,475 yards, passed for 300 touchdowns and will forever be remembered for "The Drive" and his helicopter spin against the Packers in the Super Bowl. The nine-time Pro Bowler was inducted in 2004.

Gary Zimmerman joined Elway in Canton in 2008. He was a tackle's tackle. He was a rock solid anchor on the Minnesota Vikings' offensive line from 1986-92 before joining the Broncos via a trade late into the 1993 preseason. He played in 169 consecutive games at one point, but he was one of those guys who toughed out all of the pain that he piled up during the course of a season. He helped the Broncos to their first Super Bowl in Jan. 1998 and was named to three of his seven Pro Bowl appearances as a Bronco. He was selected to the the 1980s All-Decade and the 1990s All-Decade team.

Floyd Little had to wait a long time to receive his bust in Canton, but that came in 2010. He was the Broncos first-round pick in 1967, sixth overall, and over the years acquired the nickname "The Franchise." He has been rightly hailed as the player who kept the Broncos alive in Denver. He rushed for 6,323 yards in nine seasons, gaining 1,133, a career-high, in 1971. That was when 1,000 yard seasons meant something. A threat out of the backfield, Little gained 2,418 receiving yards.

And now Shannon Sharpe joins those three famous Broncos in Canton.

For more on the Broncos, check out Mile High Report.

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NFL Hall Of Fame Class of 2011 Includes Shannon Sharpe, Deion Sanders, Marshall Faulk

The 2011 NFL Hall of Fame Inductees were announced on Saturday night and former Denver Broncos tight end Shannon Sharpe was elected into the class of 2011. Along with Sharpe, cornerback Deion Sanders and running back Marshall Faulk were inducted in their first year of eligibility.

Sharpe played 14 years in the NFL, 12 with the Denver Broncos. He won two Super Bowls with the Broncos and one with the Baltimore Ravens. He racked up 10,060 receiving yards and his 815 receptions were a position record at the time of his retirement following the 2003 season. He made the Pro Bowl eight times. Sharpe was always known for his words, always there to make a quick quip or provide some colorful commentary.

He joins John Elway, Gary Zimmerman and Floyd Little as the fourth Denver Broncos player to be enshrined in Canton. He is also the eighth tight end to make the Hall of Fame.

Sanders played 14 years in the NFL from 1989 to 2005. He began his career with the Atlanta Falcons until he moved to the San Francisco 49ers in 1994. After one season there he spent the next five seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. After the 2000 season with the Washington Redskins, Sanders retired from football until the 2004 season. He spent 2004 and 2005 with the Baltimore Ravens. At his best, Sanders was an elite, shutdown corner with 53 career interceptions. He accumulated 6,492 all purpose yards as a returner. He was well known for his "Primetime" persona.

Marshall Faulk is perhaps the best dual-threat running back. In his 12-year career, Faulk totaled 12,279 rushing yards and 6,875 receiving yards.

The others elected were defensive end Richard Dent, linebackers Chris Hanburger, Les Richter and Ed Sabol, the founder of NFL Films.

Head over to Mile High Report for more on Shannon Sharpe's election to the Hall of Fame.

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