Found February 04, 2012 on
Fox Sports North:
Former Minnesota Vikings defensive end Chris Doleman is headed to the Hall of Fame.
Doleman was one of six players named Saturday in the 2012 induction class for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Former Minnesota receiver Cris Carter was one of the 15 finalists heading into Saturday and made the initial cut to 10, but didn't receive the final call he was looking for.
Doleman, the Vikings' all-time sack leader and fourth in NFL history with 150.5 sacks, will be part of the six-member group inducted in August. Joining Doleman are cornerback Jack Butler, center Dermontti Dawson, defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy, running back Curtis Martin and offensive tackle Willie Roaf.
"It's nice for somebody to notice your body of work as a player," Doleman said earlier this week. "It is a humbling experience, I guess. To be considered one of the greatest to have played. . . . You're in rare air."
Doleman, the fourth overall pick in the 1985 draft by Minnesota, is the 10th former Viking to join the Hall of Fame. It was the second time as a finalist for Doleman, who was also inducted into the team's Ring of Honor this past season.
"Certainly Chris has been worthy of this honor for a long time," said Paul Wiggin, former Vikings defensive line coach in a release. "His sack numbers are just a part of it. Even more impressive, he had what we referred to as a 'hat trick,' which was the sack, the strip of the ball and the recovery of the fumble; probably more so than anybody in football, including Reggie White.
"There's probably no player that had more speed combined with body lean as far as being an outside rusher. He had incredible balance and body control to be able to stay on his feet and arch himself back into the quarterback, which was how he was able to create so many fumbles and big plays."
During his 15-year career, Doleman played for Minnesota, San Francisco and Atlanta, making the Pro Bowl eight times. Doleman was drafted as an outside linebacker, but eventually became a defensive end as Minnesota transitioned to the 4-3 defense and finished his career seventh in NFL history with 24 fumble recovered and forced 45 fumbles during his career.
Carter has been a finalist five times, but has yet to hear his name as one of the final inductees. An eight-time Pro Bowl receiver, Carter is fourth all-time with 1,101 catches. His 13,899 receiving yards rank eighth and his 130 touchdowns receptions are fourth all-time.
"I can't fake who I am," Carter said earlier this week. "I can't make it up. I never won a championship. At the end of the day, as a man, I'm just waiting like everyone else who ever played this game. I don't like being in the situation where someone else is going to put the identity on your career. It seems like everyone is waiting to make an adjustment on my career based on the Hall of Fame. It's the system that we're in and I just have to deal with it."
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