Former Star Blasts Cincinnati Bengals, Pro Football Hall of Fame

Yet another former NFL great is getting ornery in his old age. In a new piece by the Athletic's Paul Dehner Jr., four-time Pro Bowl and one-time Super Bowl champion running back Corey Dillon aired his grievances with the Cincinnati Bengals and the Pro Football Hall of Fame over what he believes is an ongoing snubbing.

“I want it all,” Dillon told Dehner. “I am coming for it all. You know why? Because I earned it. I’m not one of these borderline guys sitting on my ass reminiscing, talking about, ‘Oh, if I had this, shoulda, coulda, woulda.’ No. I’m justified.”

Dillon believes his career merits a spot in the Bengals Ring of Honor, and he certainly has a compelling case. He slogged through seven thankless seasons for the team, accumulating a franchise-record 8061 rushing yards.

Unfortunately for Dillon, he isn't fondly remembered by Bengals fans or the power brokers within the organization. His squads failed to make a single postseason appearance, and he famously torched ownership and management on his way out. Given that fans decide the Ring of Honor inductees, it will be difficult for him to get a fair shake.

As for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Dillon faces a much steeper climb. His 13514 yards from scrimmage rank 46th all-time, and several running backs ahead of him haven't sniffed enshrinement either, including Tiki Barber, Fred Taylor, Steven Jackson, and Ricky Watters. Dillon's peak was also relatively modest: he was absolutely crucial to the 2004 New England Patriots Super Bowl-winning team, compiling a career-high 1738 yards from scrimmage, but that total only ranks 187th all-time for a single season.

Dillon can blame the haters for what he deems a lack of historic respect, but the harsh truth is he's in a bed of his own making. Mending some fences could eventually earn him some flowers in Cincinnati, but it isn't his attitude that's keeping him out of the Hall of Fame. He can fancy himself a victim of his brashness and honesty, but the harsh truth is he simply doesn't have a resume worthy of Canton.  

Photo Credit: © Craig Ruttle, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC