Only 267 bronze busts reside in the Hall of Fame Gallery inside the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. They "immortalize" the greatest players, coaches, and contributors that this game has produced. Each week during the 2011 NFL Season we will sit down for a Q&A with one of these legends.
Lynn Swann, Class of 2001
Golf, working out and yard work, those are my hobbies and that’s about it.
LAST BOOK YOU READ:
It was a Tom Clancy novel; I read a lot of his books.
My favorite current movie hasn’t even come out yet. It’s called “Red Tails” and it will be out January 20. It’s a George Lucas film about the Tuskegee Airmen and it’s a great action/adventure film.
My mother’s fried chicken and her homemade rolls.
FAVORITE NFL TEAM AS A CHILD:
The San Francisco 49ers.
FAVORITE NFL STADIUM OTHER THAN THREE RIVERS STADIUM:
The Los Angeles Coliseum.
WHY DID YOU PICK NO. 88?
I didn’t, the trainer picked it because at the time receivers had to wear 80 series numbers. Otherwise, I would have been number 22.
DID YOU HAVE ANY PRE-GAME SUPERSTITIONS?
WHAT’S BETTER ABOUT THE NFL TODAY THAN WHEN YOU PLAYED?
WHAT WAS BETTER ABOUT THE NFL DURING YOUR CAREER THAN THE GAME TODAY?
I don’t know if it’s better overall but certainly the fact that we practiced more than they practice now. It was better for a team and with the new collective bargaining agreement that says you only wear pads once a week and cuts down on what you do in practice, I think overall prevents a team from coming together faster and playing at a higher level consistently.
FAVORITE ATHLETE EVER IN ANY SPORT:
I don’t know that I have a favorite athlete of all time. Bob Beamon in the long jump I looked up to as a long jumper in high school and I thought he was a phenomenal athlete. Wilma Rudolph was one spectacular athlete and I got to know her very well in the 70s. So those are two of my favorites and they are obviously in track and field not in football or basketball.
TOUGHEST PLAYER YOU FACED:
Other than the IRS (laughing). There are some great defensive backs, and I don’t mean to say that anybody wasn’t tough, but the mindset I always had was that there was nobody out there that I couldn’t beat and couldn’t find a way to get open against. So I never really focused on one guy being the toughest, I always tried to find their flaws or how to turn their strength into a weakness for a moment anyway.
ONE PERSON WHO INFLUENCED YOU MOST IN LIFE:
My parents. Certainly my mom and dad have influenced me more than anyone else. Outside of my family though I’d say it was a guy named Wayne Hughes, who was a personal friend from California.
WHAT MAKES YOU MOST PROUD ABOUT YOUR HALL OF FAME CAREER?
My team. The fact that we were a great team and as a team they provided opportunities for me to be able to excel.
WHEN IF EVER DID YOU REALIZE YOU MAY SOMEDAY MAKE THE HALL OF FAME?
I think about five years after I retired when my name actually came up on the finalist list was the first time. Although having been on that list for 14 consecutive years, which is longer than anyone else, I had my doubts.
HOW DID YOU LEARN OF YOUR HALL OF FAME ELECTION?
The Wyndham Hotel in Tampa, Fla.
WAS JOHN STALLWORTH YOUR ONLY CHOICE AS A PRESENTER?
There were other choices but I felt that John was the right one and the appropriate one.
IF YOU COULD DO YOUR ENSHRINEMENT SPEECH OVER TODAY, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY DIFFERENTLY?
WHAT’S YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT OFF THE FOOTBALL FIELD?
Certainly my family and my work with Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America.