New York Jets running back Curtis Martin will officially be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame today, capping a remarkable career marked by consistency and durability. Curtis Martin's on-field accomplishments are plenty, but they are accentuated by his off-field demeanor, the class with which he has always conducted himself. Curtis Martin turned football into a way out of a tough upbringing and parlayed that into an NFL Hall of Fame career.
Curtis Martin will officially become a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame today, presented by his mentor, legendary head coach Bill Parcells. Bill Parcells treated Curtis Martin to some tough love early on in his career when the two were with the New England Patriots, and Curtis Martin rewarded him by becoming one of the greatest running backs in NFL history.
Maurice Carthon, Patriots running backs coach when the team drafted Curtis Martin, described Martin as almost too good to be true. It still resonates today, a star player so humble off the field. It's part of what makes Curtis Martin special, beyond all of the impressive accomplishments of his NFL career.
Curtis Martin Career Accomplishments
- 1995 Offensive Rookie of the Year
- Five-time Pro Bowl Selection
- Five-time All-Pro
- NFL Rushing Leader in 2004 (Oldest player to ever do so)
- 2001 Ed Block Courage Award
- 2005 Bart Starr Man of the Year Award
- New York Jets all-time leading rusher
- Fourth all-time on NFL career rushing list
- One of two players to ever rush for 1,000 yards in first 10 NFL seasons (Barry Sanders)
While the numbers and accomplishments give a tangible way to grasp the accomplishments of a great running back like Curtis Martin, those who played with him or coached him always mention his hard work and dedication first. The Jets signed Curtis Martin away from the Patriots in an attempt to change the culture, because Bill Parcells knew that as the team's best player, Curtis Martin would also be the hardest worker.
That's what will always stand out about Curtis Martin, although his numbers would be enough on their own. Despite how good of a player he was, Curtis Martin the person will always trump Curtis Martin the player. Congratulations Curtis Martin on making the Pro Football Hall of Fame!
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