Andre Reed: ‘You Represent What The Hall Of Fame Stands For’
Andre Reed, who spent 15 of his 16 NFL seasons in Buffalo, was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, along with Michael Strahan, Derrick Brooks, Walter Jones, Aeneas Williams, Ray Guy and Claude Humphrey.
Reed, a seven-time pro Bowler, finished his career with 951 catches, 13,198 yards and 87 touchdowns.
“It’s been a tiring week, but I’ll tell you: anybody would take (being) tired for this kind of thing,” Reed said on The Doug Gottlieb Show. “The thing that hit me (first) was the Gold Jacket dinner (last Friday). Hearing from other Hall of Famers, what it’s like when you go through the gauntlet of the other Hall of Famers and get up on stage and you take your jacket off and you put that gold jacket on – it’s just a different feel. It’s like no other jacket. There’s so much that not only goes into that jacket, but you represent what the Hall of Fame stands for and what those guys that shaped the game . . . stand for. That was probably the signature moment early in the week besides the actual enshrinement itself.”
Reed, 50, had to wait nine years before getting a call to Canton.
“I’m not going to lie. It was frustrating at times – probably about (six or seven or eight years into it),” Reed said. “But one thing that I tell a lot of people is that I was very humble about the situation. I understood the process and what the voters go through every single year. They put 128 guys on the ballot and they whittle it down to five guys. Anybody who puts 128 guys on the ballot, I think they all deserve to be in the Hall of Fame. I was just very humble about the situation. My mom and my family, they were more crazy about it than I was. But like I said, I knew what the process was about, what kind of things went on with it.”
“But patience has always been a virtue in my life,” Reed continued, “and I even said that two night ago in the enshrinement ceremony. It’s pretty special, man. Very special time in my life, very special for my family. I can’t say enough about all the other guys – all the Hall of Famers and the class that I went in with.”
Indeed, there’s probably only one moment in Reed’s Hall of Fame week that he’d like to have back. Talking to New York Magazine, Reed made disparaging remarks – which he thought were off the record – about Jon Bon Jovi and Johnny Manziel. Reed believes that Bon Jovi, who is part of a Toronto-based group that wants to buy the Bills, might one day move the team out of Buffalo. Reed also said that Manziel will be a bust in the NFL.
Reed publicly apologized to both.
“I’m not going to back down from what I said,” Reed explained, “but I never knew that the guy would put it in the magazine and it would blow up like that.”
In discussing Bon Jovi, Reed said he merely wanted to show his support and allegiance to Buffalo.
“My voice is just for the fans,” he said, “to show them that I cared about where I played and how many years I played there and what that team has done for me and the fans have done for me. I’m just a voice for them. Whatever I can do, I’m going to do to make their voice a little bit louder.”