Behind the Bronze: Tony Dorsett

10/19/2011

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.

Tony Dorsett, Class of 1994



Tony Dorsett's Hall of Fame bio>>>

HOBBIES:
I like to watch a lot of movies. I work out, which is a hobby of mine, keeping active. I enjoy spending time with my children.

LAST BOOK YOU READ:
"Age of Opportunity" is a book I've been reading about parenting advice.

FAVORITE MUSIC:
I don't really have a favorite but I listen to jazz.

FAVORITE MOVIE:
I'm a big fan of "The Godfather."

FAVORITE FOOD:
Soul food. I love chicken, I love pork chops, I love ribs. My favorite dessert is sweet potato pie and ice cream.

FAVORITE NFL TEAM AS A CHILD:
My favorite NFL team as a child was the Pittsburgh Steelers. Being from Pittsburgh. Also, the Dallas Cowboys. They were my two favorite teams. The Cowboys became "1A" and the Steelers "1B." 

FAVORITE NFL STADIUM OTHER THAN TEXAS STADIUM:
I'd said RFK Stadium only because the fact that we were hated quite a bit in that part of the country, one of our big rivals. And to just go into that stadium and silence those fans was a good feeling.

WHY DID YOU PICK NO. 33?
It was because of my older brother. I have four older brothers. They started off with No. 21. My brother before me had No. 33.

Watch: Tony Dorsett recalls his favorite NFL moment.

DID YOU HAVE ANY PRE-GAME SUPERSTITIONS?
Not Really.

WHAT’S BETTER ABOUT THE NFL TODAY THAN WHEN YOU PLAYED?
(Laughter). The money. Stadiums have gotten better. But, overall the amount of money the players make.

WHAT WAS BETTER ABOUT THE NFL DURING YOUR CAREER THAN THE GAME TODAY?
I think guys were more into it. I think guys today think they're owed something now when they get to the NFL and they're not as committed as guys a while back. I think the money is a big reason for that.

FAVORITE ATHLETE EVER IN ANY SPORT?
My oldest brother Tyrone. I watched him and he was just a tremendous football sensation. And, I wanted to be like my brother. Any other sport would be Muhammad Ali who is someone I was fascinated with as a kid growing up.

TOUGHEST PLAYER YOU FACED:
It's very hard to say one guy. A lot of times at my position, it would be linebackers who would be part of that answer. I could say Mike Singletary, Harry Carson, Lawrence Taylor. Those guys created a lot of havoc. I could go all the way back to Bill Bergey. As a group, those guys in New York, Harry Carson, Carl Banks, and LT, they were a handful. 

WHAT MAKES YOU MOST PROUD ABOUT YOUR HALL OF FAME CAREER?
When I came into the league and I saw the way guys worked out and how you had to train. I'll never forget looking at Roger Staubach and some of those guys as a rookie and thought if I made it on this team, I'd be the happiest person. I enjoyed playing with the guys I played with and being part of a team concept. Playing those great games, those great rivalries. I made a lot of friendships over the years playing in the National Football League. I just cherish those great moments and those things as a team that we were able to accomplish.

And the rivalries we had. Take the Washington Redskins; it wasn't just the two cities paying attention to that game, everybody around the country wanted to see who won. Dallas-Pittsburgh. Those rivalries were real intense.

WHEN IF EVER DID YOU REALIZE YOU MAY SOMEDAY MAKE THE HALL OF FAME?
I never even thought about it. As a matter a fact, when I was elected in 1994 I didn't even know I was eligible. I was on injured reserve in 1989 and I didn't know I even qualified yet. Then, I got thinking about it, my numbers were there. But, you never know.

HOW DID YOU LEARN OF YOUR HALL OF FAME ELECTION?
I think I was at home in Dallas and I got the call. But, what a feeling! You got a feeling that all the blood, sweat and tears, all the aches and pains, all the trials and tribulations, the ups and downs. It made it all worth it.

WAS TOM LANDRY YOUR ONLY CHOICE AS A PRESENTER?
Yes, that was my man.

IF YOU COULD DO YOUR ENSHRINEMENT SPEECH OVER TODAY, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY DIFFERENTLY?
I don't think I would say anything different. I think I covered everything I wanted to in my enshrinement speech.

WHAT’S YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT OFF THE FOOTBALL FIELD?
Being the father of four children. Being there for them. Being the son that I am, the brother that I am, the husband that I am, and the father that I am. I think I've done pretty good in all of those. I'm very proud of who I am, where I've come from and who I've become.

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