It was a great day for the Chicago Bears on February 8th, 2024. That was when it was announced that two team legends got the amazing news that they would be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Devin Hester, the greatest return man in NFL history, got in on his third attempt. It is another reminder that there are many ways to change the game beyond playing offense or defense. The far more emotional moment came when Steve McMichael, the legendary defensive tackle from the 1985 Super Bowl championship team, finally got the news from friend and beloved teammate Richard Dent.
The moment was especially emotional for McMichael. He’s been battling ALS for a long time. Almost every bodily function has abandoned him, and many fear he may not have much time left. Getting him into Canton was a dream his wife, family, and friends passionately fought for. Now all he has to do is hang on a little longer until this coming August to get that coveted gold jacket. It will be interesting to see who he and Hester end up choosing to induct them. There will be no shortage of candidates.
Steve McMichael and Devin Hester were never questionable.
Both had iron-clad cases for the Hall of Fame. It’s only a shame it took voters this long to see sense. McMichael was one of the most dominant defensive tackles of his era. He has the fourth-most sacks of any player at his position in league history (100.5), played on arguably the greatest defense ever, and won a championship. There wasn’t anything else he could’ve done. As for Hester, he redefined what it means to be a return man. Teams literally had to gameplan on special teams because of the threat he posed. That had never happened before. He retired with over 11,000 total return yards and 20 combined touchdowns.
You can’t talk about the eras those two played in without mentioning their names. Never mind the fact both Steve McMichael and Devin Hester were unforgettable characters. They made watching football not just exciting, but fun. In the end, that is what it’s all about. Entertain the fans while winning a lot of games. One can only hope more like them inhabit Halas Hall in the near future.